co Launch Your Linkage Campaign, Build Your Small Business Website |

Linkage is no doubt the most important component of building Internet exposure for your small business website. Google, Yahoo!, MSN and other search engines determine the ranking of your site, in large part, based on how many people link to your website.

Launching a linkage campaign means you’re serious about requiring links and you’ve made a plan. There are less than scrupulous ways to achieve links, but there are also methods to acquiring good links–and search engines will take notice.

Small businesses need to focus on building a reputable online presence.

What most people don’t know is that there are many benefits to a linkage campaign that reach far beyond simply gaining links.

The Benefits of a Linkage Campaign:

• You find other similar sites, which lets you know who your competition is.
• You find out what other businesses are doing right–and wrong.
• You are introduced to the web community and can begin online networking.
• You can find and connect with partner programs and other promotional avenues.
• A linkage report is stored as an HTML file and becomes your map to other key sites.

Behind each link is a website, and behind each website is a media contact. Over time, you start to communicate with each other, may even meet each other at a convention, and these connections can alter the course of your career. You never know what may happen in the future, and keeping lines of communication open benefits everyone. Hey, you never know when you might be looking for a job!

Start solid and strive to add 3 new links a week. Send simple emails, appropriately referred to as “link letters,” and compliment their site–and ask to be added as a link and tell them you’ll reciprocate. Create a links page on your website. Then, follow up–no one likes being used. Consider an email update or exchange of an e-newsletter as a courtesy call–remember those? When a sales person would actually stop by and chat? It’s the same principle.

Your linkage campaign is based on consistency. As a small business owner, you give yourself a huge advantage by linking with others and utilizing this great networking tool.