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As we wrote on our inbound linking page, in Google’s algorithm, an inbound link works like a vote—a vote for that page’s trustworthiness, importance, and subject matter.

So most people know that inbound linking should be a central part of every search engine optimization campaign, but, because black hat SEOers have abused the system (stuffing anchor text, link farming, etc), Google is not tolerating any shenanigans.

And yet, despite Google’s no-mischief policy, there are still white hat strategies that work. Here are few little-known (and legitimate!) tips that will help you rank higher in the search engines’ results pages:

1. Links higher up in the code are more powerful than links lower in the code

Through a series of tests, the folks at Moz.com have concluded that a link (anchor texted with a specific keyword) high in the HTML code, directed at another page, can actually help that page outperform a page that has that specific keyword in the front of the title tag. In other words:

Page A:

  • Link, at the top of another page on that site, directed to page A (anchor text: “keyword”)
  • Title tag: x, y, z, “keyword”

Page B:

  • Title tag: “keyword” x, y, z

According to Moz.com, Page A > Page B

Fact: Links high in the HTML can help overwhelm on-page elements.

2. External links are more powerful than internal links

Google has long held that what other people say about you is more important than what you say about yourself, but because of a few algorithm changes, this is more true now than ever in link building.

External > Internal

3. Keywords in HTML text are more powerful than those in alt attributes tags

This is not to say that we should throw out alt attribute tags–they still have their place. Instead, remember which is more important to Google.

Fact: Text > Alt Attributes

Written by: Daniel Griffith on July 11, 2014

Daniel is an Author, Designer, and Entrepreneur. With over 10 years of industry experience, Daniel utilizes his unique blend of mathematics and poetry, engineering and creative thinking to solve both technical and business challenges.

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