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A Powerful, Yet Often Overlooked Tip To Improve your Rankings (and it's free)

By Robin Nobles
Posted Monday, September 20, 2004

With the growing importance of Google this month, you should be thinking about how to garner more quality links to your Web site. Google ranks your page not only on its content, but on other factors such as how many links across the Web point to your site, how popular the linking sites are, and whether they contain content related to your own.

It's often recommended that you submit your site to Yahoo and Open Directory, not only for the traffic they can directly provide, but also for the increased link popularity you'll receive. WebPosition provides guidance on how to perform these critical submissions while achieving the best results.

What is not common knowledge is the importance of submitting your site to another important content site: About.com. When doing searches on Google, you'll notice that About.com articles pop up fairly often. About.com has long provided rich, custom-built content on hundreds of topics. In addition, the site enjoys thousands of links to its site, causing it to score highly in terms of link popularity. Consequently, sites that are linked to from About.com not only receive additional free traffic, but receive a boost in link popularity, and in turn, an improvement in their rankings.

Many Web marketers often overlook About.com, since it has no single, formal submission page. Instead, the secret is to gain the favor of the About.com "Guide" in charge of compiling the content for the area that relates to your Web site. To do this, simply navigate to the area of their site that your Web site's content is best suited.

By clicking on the link to the Guide's name in the top left corner of the page, you can obtain a bio of the person and generally their contact information. Pay close attention to whether the person has any stated preferences to how Web sites or new content should be suggested.

Avoid making your e-mail to the Guide sound like a commercial. They are looking for quality content, but they are by no means obligated to include yours if you turn them off. To improve your odds, review the type of content that the guide has chosen to include or link to. Then, if you have written an article or page that would add value to the existing content that the Guide has, then suggest that the Guide link to your article. Give the Guide reasons for why it would enhance the quality of their site. Do this while being polite, to the point, and keeping things low-key and friendly. Do it right, and you may be surprised how easy it is to gain entry into such a popular Web site.

About the Author
Robin Nobles is the Director of Training of the Academy of Web Specialists, which teaches online training in search engine marketing. She is also a trainer with Search Engine Workshops, which presents on location workshops in search engine marketing at various locations across the country. Please visit our site for more information about online training and other resources.
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