Six Ways To Improve Your Link Requests

Link building, one of the most important strategies in obtaining a search engine presence, can be done in a variety of ways and tactics. Here are 6 considerations you should make, when taking on a “natural link building” strategy and sending out link requests.

1.) Try To Use A Real Name
And if you can’t get a name, use more than just “hello”. Be professional and courteous in your initial email message. Sometimes, picking up the phone and calling the business or organization first, to establish who to direct a professional correspondence to, is the best bet, especially if you highly value the link opportunity.

2.) Write a Meaningful Subject Line
Since they don’t know you, it’s 99% likely your email address is going to appear in the “From” section. If you use “hello” or “Hi” or “link request” or “read this!” in your subject, it’s sure to get deleted or caught in a spam filter before you even have a chance. Remember, recipients scan the subject line in order to decide whether to open, forward, file, or trash a message

3.) Establish a connection in the first few seconds of your email message
After the initial “Thank You for taking the time…” make sure to immediately present your value proposition or “statement of worth” when the reader scans the message. In addition, consider the following factors for creating a quality email message:

  • Make certain you state how you found the website
  • Identify specifically why there could be a relationship
  • Identify what you expect from a standpoint of an outcome
  • Be as quick and concise as possible

4.) Cross Your “T’s” and Dot Your “I’s”
If immediate impressions matter for drawing in the email recipient’s interest, misspellings and bad grammar are sure to lose it. Do yourself a favor and spell check/grammar check your email before sending it out.

5.) Be Professional, Polite and Specific
The last overall link request tip is to be professional, polite and courteous in your messaging, as well as providing the specific information required for completing your link request. Try as hard as possible to not have to send repeat email messages back and forth. Make sure to include your link title and web address, website name and address (if different) and applicable descriptions and contact information.

6.) If You Can’t Create a Meaningful Connection Between Your Website and The Link Opportunity, Don’t Send The Email
In other words, give the recipient a reason to give you a link. If you can’t pinpoint a specific page on your website, and how that specific page is valuable to the readers of the specific page you are requesting a link to, stop sending the email and start creating some content that will get you that link.

Parting Thoughts on Link Strategies
Finally, here are four excellent link building strategy resources, listed in the order of “time it would take to read” and money required to purchase.

  • A Linking-Campaign Primer – written a while back by Eric Ward (2001 – when was that?), but this brief tip sheet still holds a ton of value as it relates to what you need to prepare for and consider when creating and investing time in a link building strategy
  • Five Link Building Strategies That Work – fresh for 2007, Copy Blogger gives the reader 5 link building strategies that incorporate the latest website trends and information. Make sure to read the comments as well, they’re just as valuable.
  • 131 (Legitimate) Link Building Strategies – from Search Engine Watch in 2002, this long list of link strategies, ideas and tips is a must read, but it does take a few minutes to digest and includes a lot of cited sources and reference material.
  • If you have $29 bucks laying around, and like link building, I would recommend grabbing a copy of SEOmoz.org’s The Professional’s Guide to Link Building. I had the original post bookmarked, so I had a chance a while back to get a sneak peek. It was definitely a good read and (like the majority of SEOmoz material) would be worth the money if you are serious about link building.

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