This week I was asked about the “value” of a link on the home page compared to being on the links list (where included on a blog’s sidebar, for instance). And of course I replied that a link from a home page will always be considered more important than a link elsewhere, but such questions make me a little cross, I have to say.
Of course we want our website to be offered to the person looking for us/our service, but it too often seems to be the main focus; that considering that if they do get to the “top of Google”, are the resulting visitors going to then what you want them to do?
That’s not to say that you shouldn’t make it simple for the search engines to understand what your website and/or blog is about, but when the primary concern is the value of links from elsewhere, that’s not likely to be helpful in the long run.
The point of any website is to provide information, for whatever reason – to entice, to inform, to share – the SEO is simply a method that helps the search engines know what you’re about.
I think the value is best considered from your visitor’s point of view – is the link of value to them as they read, or not? Is a list of links to sites you consider worth a visit useful for them? Or might that even have a detrimental effect on how they perceive you and your site?
Applying simple and obvious techniques, such as a link being on what is referred to as “anchor text” that is more akin to what is being searched for (i.e. WordPress Help instead of www.blogmistress.com or even our website) makes sense (and no, having those 3 links is not likely to be a good thing, more likely the opposite) and is something we should all be doing by now as standard, not as some special SEO action.
So – sometimes, perhaps actually most of the time, step away from the SEO and get on with providing what your visitors, readers, customers want. And if you don’t know what that is, give me a shout and I’ll take a look, suggest what you need and who is best to help you.