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Hello, this is Richard Jacobs from Speakeasy Marketing. Today, I’m going to talk to you about the importance of back links pointing to your website and how to get them, how to get good quality ones.

Now, this is a tough topic because Google is always fighting spam and there are always people out there that are trying to get hundreds and thousands of links and run things called link forms and try to spam Google to get their websites at the top of Google search. Everybody’s trying to do it, it’s a big old arms race and one of the major weapons in the arms race is links. A link is that clickable text, where you click on it and it takes you to another website or another page on a site. So, the reason why Google’s algorithm, a search engine’s algorithm looks for links is because it sees them as votes of confidence in your site. So, if you’re a bankruptcy attorney in Minnesota and you’ve got links from the Minnesota State Bar and you’ve got links from NASCAR, the organization for bankruptcy attorneys, and you got links from other attorneys in your area, Google’s going to see those links and say, “Wow, this site, these really powerful organizations the lawyers have voted for it because they link to that site, so I’m going to show it for more of my search results. I’m going to give it higher position, better ranking and I’m going to have it shown for more keywords”. The net effect to you is that you’ll get more visitors to your site and more calls and more clients which is the name of the game for everybody out there.

It sounds nice, it sounds easy to say but links are incredibly tough to get especially in today’s environment. The reason is that Google has created a culture of fear, it says, “Oh, you better not pay for links or we’ll penalize your site, and you better not spam our algorithm or we’ll kick you out and we’ll penalize your site and get rid of it”. There’s all these threats of losing all your traffic and I would bet a lot of SEO companies you’ve talked to have told you different things about it like, “Oh, we’ll get you 500 links for 500 bucks”, or, “You shouldn’t bother to go for links, it’s a bad idea. You shouldn’t go for article links; you shouldn’t go for this kind of link”. There are a lot of misconceptions about this out there, so I want to dispel them.

I’m going to tell you some of the links that are not useful for you to get, one is reciprocal links where I link to you and you link back to me. This is one of the earliest ways in which people would get lots of links to their site, Google sees that now and they just don’t give you any credit for it. One overarching thing actually is Google really punishes people for bad links. What they do is they just put a pillow over the face of the link and smother it, meaning it gives you no value. It looks like it would give you value but it gives you none. That’s far easier than penalizing you because penalizing you will make you mad, it’ll make you think about suing Google or calling them up and screaming at them. It’s far better that they just smother the links that you have and have it give you no credit and therefore you get no results but you never really know if it’s a bad link or not and what Google is doing or not.

That’s how they like to operate, it’s kind of covertly like that and not tell you what’s going on. So, again, very rarely you’ll get penalized unless you do things in-excess. Reciprocal link’s not going to help you and won’t hurt you. Some people will get really high page rankings; it’s a metric that Google has that tells you the strength of a website. They’ll go to places like China, Russia, India or anywhere overseas and they’ll get links from these really powerful sites that pay a fee for them. These links are bad links and they’re obvious to Google’s reps that may look at your site, they’re obvious to Google’s algorithm. These kinds of links Google will penalize you for, they’re not relevant, they make no sense; why would someone in Russia link to you? It makes no sense.

That’s an obvious thing that can cause you a problem. So, other links that are out there, links from article directories, these article sites on the web, they used to be great. They would get you a lot of what’s called link juice and link popularity. Now they do nothing for you, like easing articles, articles base, that kind of stuff. So those are pretty much worthless, again not going to hurt you unless you have hundreds and thousands of them.

Another bad thing is again, if you engage in one of those places that says, “Get me 500 links for 500 bucks”, well, you know why it’s bad because if you paid me 500 bucks to get your 500 links, my incentive is to get you the cheapest, crap, easiest links I can get you. It doesn’t matter if they’re relevant or not, so you’re going to get a lot of garbage. One should think of getting links as a diet, if you eat all skittles and M&Ms and sugar, you’re going to feel sick and you’re going to be really unhealthy so the same thing with bad links, you’re just going to feel sick, your site’s going to be sick, it’s not going to be healthy, not going to get you any traffic. You want to have really good stuff in your diet and good links.

What are good links? A good link is relevant, so you as an attorney want to get a link from legal related sites. Non-competing attorneys are a great source, it makes sense they’d link to you, legal directories, getting in the news for anything about the area of law you practice. State Bar Association if they’re linked to you, other organizations in your practice area if they’re linked to you or provide you a profile. There’s the Yahoo directory and there’s the bunch of legal sites where you can get links but you’ve got to go to all of them. It takes time and those links will help you and especially links from non-competing attorneys. It makes total sense for them.

Non-relevant links like a link from a flower shop, a link from a bakery, a link from China, Russia, India, it makes no sense to you as a human being looking at it. You can’t figure out why this place links to that place, then it’s irrelevant and it’s not going to help you and in the long run will hurt you. That’s the kind of stuff you want to avoid and the relevant stuff you want is the stuff I mentioned. The sites that are the most powerful will be obviously respected authoritative sites out there. So again State Bar Association, very respected high authority, almost impossible to get, new sites are great and that kind of thing, non-competing authorities.

How many links do you need? No one really knows but as you get more of them and a pace of two or three good ones a month is plenty. You can’t stuff them in too fast because Google sees that and they’ll penalize this. Why magically would this website get 100 links all of a sudden or a 1,000 links all of a sudden? It makes no sense, so you want to get them slowly over time but you want to get them. I’ve seen sites performing really well with as little as 20 or 30 really quality links. It may take more than that but it may not. If you’ve got a history of with thousands of really crappy links, it’s like having a lot of fat, it takes time to get that fiber or to get that fat out of there. Good links will be against the backdrop of being diluted by a lot of bad ones. So, that’s the story with links but again, don’t let anyone tell you, you shouldn’t get them, don’t let anyone tell you that if you just write good content, magically people will link to you. That’s what a lot of people would like to tell you. It’s just not the truth.

You need links. You can have oodles of content, hundreds of pages but if you’ve got no back links, you’re not going to get anywhere; it’s like walking on one leg in a race. You can only hop so fast before you fall over, you need two legs so you need content links to do it. I hope this clarifies it for you and if you’re looking for a system on how to get good quality links, relevant ones consistently month in and month out and to analyze your links to make sure they’re good and to give you a plan on how to move forward, contact me Richard Jacobs at speakeasymarketinginc.com or call 888 225 8594.

 

About Richard Jacobs

My name is Richard Jacobs, and I’ve discovered quite a bit about the plight of solo practitioners and small, 2-5 attorney firms like yours these past 10 years.

I’ve come to understand the unique challenges in marketing ethically and effectively that attorneys face because I have:

  • Helped over 180 attorneys author their own practice area book and become the ‘implied expert’ in their practice area
  • Helped hundreds of attorneys successfully navigate Google’s search algorithm changes, growing their websites from 2 potential clients calling a month to 4+ calls per DAY for some clients.
  • Interviewed and promoted over 507 attorneys nationwide, in practice areas such as:
  • DUI / DWI
  • Family Law
  • Criminal Defense
  • Bankruptcy
  • Auto Accidents
  • Social Security Disability
  • Slip & Falls (Premises Liability)
  • Real Estate
  • Estate Planning / Probate
  • Wage and Hour Claims
  • Expungements / Post Conviction Relief

Before you decide to invest in your marketing, it makes sense to first request your complimentary, custom, no obligation video website review.

Richard is the author of 5 books published on Amazon, Kindle and Audible.com

Richard is available for speaking engagements on direct marketing for attorneys and has recently spoken at the following legal conferences:

  • PILMMA (Personal Injury Lawyers Marketing & Management Association)
  • Las Vegas DUI Summit – Private event for DUI attorneys
  • New York Boutique Lawyers Association
  • Perry Marshall & Associates Marketing Academy (Marina Del Rey, CA)
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL)