This article will explain the importance of link quality, and its application to link building. Everyone may have a different understanding of what “quality” is on terms of links, but essentially that is your decision entirely. If you have an existing site, that you need to build links for, use this as a reference check list to ensure that you are link building properly. I am going to review the key 6 areas. Let’s start:

Is the page linking to you indexed in Google and is the cache version fresh?
Why is this essential? Google has a cached page of any indexed page on their index. So basically, this should be your starting point for any link partnership decision. You need to verify that the page the link partner is proposing for exchange, is actually indexed and that the cached version is of the page is fresh in their records, within 20 days old as a benchmark. This will show that the page in question gets crawled often. PageRank of the page is secondary in comparison to this primary check.

Is the page linking to you on topic? Is this a themed link?
There is a big difference between the types of links you can get. These type of link are very targeted and carry a lot more weight over generic or unrelated links. This is part of what explains why some sites with much less links that their direct competitors are able to outrank them for particular terms. Quality links from themed sources is the main reason for that. Focusing on just “popularity” and inadvertently ignoring “reputation” is a mistake a lot of search marketers make.

Is the Title tag of the page linking to you on-topic? What about the text?
The title tag of the page linking to you is of great importance. When that is combined with text that is on topic with the page which is being link from, and other factors, the link value is increased greatly for the link. So as you can understand from this, is that co-relation of these factors makes a better link.

Where is your link on the page located? Navigation, gutter, footer, body?
Location of your link is another strong factor to consider. The most beneficial location is considered to be within the body area of content. Any repetitive areas like navigation, gutter, footer, etc would normally not carry as much weight as the main body area. “Run-of-site” links fall into this group. There is a preference for the first paragraph, but the middle or bottom within body content are also good.

How many other links are on the page? Home Page vs. Link Page PR gap?
PageRank gets automatically diluted in relation to the amount of links on the page. Google guidelines currently suggest a maximum of 100 links per page. So here you want to make sure the number is as small as possible. I recommend targeting 20 links per page maximum on average to have room to allow those pages link growth. Also, what is the difference between the main page PR and the subpage were you are getting the link from? In the best cases, your link will be one point under the home page value. If it isn’t, you can consider other options with your link partner.

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