From My Desk To Yours – 34th Edition

Credible Linking DOs and DON’Ts
By: Penny, EzineArticles Managing Editor

For a visitor, clicking on a new link is like skydiving for the first time – there’s always a little risk. Will they land safely after launching from your article, or will they break their neck on your landing page?

Don’t lose focus on your landing page and don’t lose credibility by driving traffic to a subpar site. Credible Linking is more than making sure your site is up and running.

Evaluate the quality of your landing page by considering the following:

  • Is the landing page relevant to the corresponding article’s content?
  • Is the intention of the URL and the landing page transparent?
  • How easy is the landing page and overall site navigation?

Before you pat yourself on the back for answering yes to the above questions, know that credible linking is more than just meeting the bare-bones guidelines of quality.

Learn how to add value and avoid blunders with the DOs and DON’Ts of credible linking below.

DO

  • Do Share Your Unbiased Opinion – A good product review article links to more information on the product or other similar product reviews objectively, i.e. no personal agenda. This helps your audience greatly in gathering information and builds trust.
     
  • Do Link to Valuable Pages Both Inside and Outside Your Own Site – Your landing page should add a huge amount of value to the visitor’s experience – each page should offer fresh, unique content. A site made up of a few short pages that just link to one another and contain little real information provides no value, decreases credibility, and causes your visitor to click away from your page.
     
  • Do Monitor Your Site’s Load Time -Remove elements from your landing page that significantly slow down the time it takes to load and place them elsewhere. A visitor will not sit and wait for 30 seconds while your page loads
     
  • Do Check Your Site in Various Browsers – Check the appearance of the landing page with the most common browsers: Firefox, Internet Explorer, Chrome, etc.

DON’T

  • Don’t Link to the Same Article on Your Own Site – The reader just finished reading the article, they don’t need to see it again on your site. That would be like if an art museum hung two identical paintings side by side in the gallery. Show the reader you have more to offer. Use your landing page to share NEW information about yourself and your expertise.
     
  • Don’t Break Any Promises With Your Landing Page – If you promise there’s going to be a free PDF or audio training file downloadable on your website, it should be readily available on your landing page. People aren’t going to stay on your site or sign up for your e-newsletter if they can’t find what they are looking for.
     
  • Don’t Ask “Are You Sure You Want To Leave This Page” 5 Times – When a reader is ready to leave your landing page, they shouldn’t have to run through a gauntlet of windows popping up to confirm they are sure they want to exit the page. They’ll only get frustrated and turned off by the hoops they have to jump through just to leave your site.
     
  • Don’t Bury Your Content in Ads – A reader will not wade through banks of advertisements and attempt to find content like a needle in a haystack.
     
  • Don’t Use Other Brand Names to Prop Up Your Own Brand – Comparing products is okay, but make sure your landing page has content that is specific to that brand. Discussing one brand and then linking to a similar brand is misleading.

Start following these guidelines today to ensure your links provide the best possible user experience for your audience. By doing so, you’ll build trust and credibility, and your readers will always be come back for more.

26 Comments »


1
Andrea writes:

Nice and informative. Plenty of advice to help me and love the bit about when ready to leave.

Comment provided August 19, 2011 at 10:21 AM

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2

Penny,

Oh, thank you for using the phrase, “Are you sure you want to leave this page” five times!

When I was new to the internet I honestly would just shut my computer down because I couldn’t get out of town quick enough. I don’t like those pop-ups at all – especially the ones that keep on popping!

Thank you for always helping us make it better.

MJ

Comment provided August 19, 2011 at 4:53 PM

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3
steven prospero writes:

how does EzineArticles and the readers of the blog feel about the link directing you to a stand alone sign in squeeze page with no other outbound link unless you enter in your name and email address and agree to go on a “Mailing List”?

Comment provided August 19, 2011 at 5:47 PM

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4
STRAIGHTALK writes:

I found a list similar to this one few months back and I add that it really works when we slow down and take a good look what what we want accomplished.. Thank U though for sharing & keeping me in que!

Norman Flecha

Comment provided August 19, 2011 at 6:50 PM

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5
Rajiv Sighamony writes:

Monitoring site’s load time is definitely important, and many site owners forget this very simple fact.

Comment provided August 20, 2011 at 1:53 AM

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6

Hi Penny,
I’ve recently added to the services I offer on my website and have launced a new article marketing campaign for it too. However, Ezine editorial team keeps reporting ‘link broken’ for the new batch of articles I submitted, though I’m getting new visitors, work requests and more daily from the same link. I’ve even sent in a screen shot of the so-called broken link to the team. Do the Eds check URL links through other browsers too – like you’re advising members to do? Then they should find my links are working. Please help me resolve this issue. Thanks!

Comment provided August 20, 2011 at 7:15 AM

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7
ashish india writes:

Great post. Thanks for the share:) I agree with your points. Landing page is an important factor of your marketing strategy and a good landing page also builds credibilty.

Comment provided August 20, 2011 at 5:01 PM

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8
M Francis writes:

Good tips… What I get from it is- treat your customers with respect, and as intelligent individuals.

Comment provided August 20, 2011 at 8:40 PM

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9
Karen writes:

I do agree with all your dos and don’ts as well as the point brought up by Steven Prospero. I feel frustrated when I can’t read any information on a page except a sign asking for my email.

Comment provided August 20, 2011 at 9:39 PM

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10
craig writes:

Thanks. I particularly find that the speed of opening a page is quite important, it’s a challenge I had when I set out on IM.

Comment provided August 21, 2011 at 11:31 AM

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11
Richard Farrar writes:

Great article , all of your dos & don’t added together will make a lot of difference in your blog site . Thank You for putting them down in print . Richard

Comment provided August 21, 2011 at 10:20 PM

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12

Great article,Thanks for your sharing!

Comment provided August 22, 2011 at 2:22 AM

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13
Linda Smith writes:

It has already been said for me. Thanks

Comment provided August 22, 2011 at 8:10 PM

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14
Kieran Gracie writes:

Thank you for these excellent points. For me the most important is about not linking to a page that is almost the same as the one just read. Pretty obvious but one that I have overlooked and must correct.

I always thought that the anchor text in the link should be indicative of the content in the page at the receiving end of the link, and just concentrated on that.

Comment provided August 23, 2011 at 4:35 AM

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15
Dee Dawber writes:

Hi Penny
I have no objection to a link that tells you to sign up for a free report if you know you have to sign up before you click the link.
I do hate pop ups with a vengeance, one product reduced $10 for every pop up so the product went from $47 to $7. What a waste of time and what a loss of credibility.
Dee

Comment provided August 31, 2011 at 9:54 AM

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16

Dee,

Agreed! A pop-up that doesn’t seem to go away is the equivalent of walking towards the exit of a retail store and having a pesky salesman ask you 3-4 times if you’re sure you didn’t find what you needed. You just don’t see that happening offline. :)

Comment provided August 31, 2011 at 10:03 AM

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17
waynmac writes:

Hi,

Excellent advice ….. it dosen’t hurt to be reminded that our vistors experience is so very important!

Comment provided December 9, 2011 at 4:58 PM

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18
RandiMarie writes:

After reading this article,I had to go back and take a second look to see if my website line up was following the guidelines that you have listed here.

Comment provided December 9, 2011 at 5:58 PM

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19
Ferb WL writes:

I love it and its pretty funny when i read that a small popup window ask before they leave (Excluded for blog) and include for sale site, a sale should definitely has this because they build nothing but selling one particular products if the finder found not interested then they just leave, but they can’t find anything beside that. so popup window is things must have in selling site.

Thanks for your tips and Please to let me quotes your ideas.

Comment provided December 9, 2011 at 9:57 PM

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20
Benjamin Raji writes:

Thank you so much for the revelation!
I have been frustrated so many times when I could not be allowed by sites, to get out when I wanted to. The pop ups repeatedly said “Are you sure you want to leave this site?” several occasions and I remembered saying to myself, “Is it a crime to have visited this site? I end up just shutting my computer down in frustration. I never wanted to see that site again hence, I thought they punished me for coming to their site instead of encouraging me to come back again. Your tips about quality Landing Page has really given me so much education and I am going to tweak my site very often to implement your teachings.
Thanks!
Benjamin

Comment provided December 10, 2011 at 7:18 AM

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21
Kanute Fleming writes:

Thanks for your article!
Those pop-ups are very annoying, and make me very determined to leave the page as soon as possible!

Comment provided December 11, 2011 at 11:03 AM

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22
Luanne writes:

Penny, Thanks alway for your constructive tips– I very much recommend EzineArticles.com to others, too, as I know you give great guidelines.

Comment provided December 11, 2011 at 7:14 PM

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23
kiki kalesi writes:

Yes loading time is important, and if one visitor want to leave from your page you don’t stop them with annoying messages

Comment provided December 14, 2011 at 7:44 AM

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24
Harry writes:

Some of the facts were right. But don’t make a rule that you do not allow promotion of squeeze pages. I think that squeeze pages are very vital in the online direct response world.

Comment provided December 16, 2011 at 6:45 AM

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25
Mike Borlovan writes:

Excellent article! I’ve learned some very good points to make sure I’m implementing on my websites. About the pop-up, I hate them! Especially when they pop-up several times.

Comment provided December 16, 2011 at 11:19 AM

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26
Rajesh Bhardwaj writes:

Good informative post. Hope I may get faster approval of my articles now and my visitors will get good experience on my website.

Comment provided March 30, 2012 at 12:34 AM

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