It amuses me these days how the concept of linking to another website is like asking a webmaster to kill their own mother. I wish I was joking with that analogy, but I’m not. Just earlier this week, a webmaster e-mailed me wanting to link to Poker Affiliate Bible because he appreciated the advice here, and what specific anchor text I’d like. So I told him, and I thought that was that until I got this awful e-mail:
“Where can YOU link to ME?”
People are so concerned these days with phrases like “outgoing PR Link Juice”, that they are forgetting the basic fundamentals the internet was built on. I’ve been running websites since 1996. (Started off with Geocities, god bless its soul). You know what websites had back in the day then? Animated Gifs. Lots of em. Java Applets. They slowed down your page big time, that was always fun. And frames. Oh man. Frames. 1999 was the peak of frames, and it was a great year as it was the year Comic Sans MS on websites basically bit the dust.
There was also links. People would have link pages. If I was a wrestling fan and I wanted to know some good wrestling pages – I wouldn’t “google” it. I wouldn’t “stumbelupon” it. There was no DIGG Circles back in the day. I wouldn’t have it retweeted via twitdash by a twoot who likes to twit. I’d find it on some guys link page, because this was the fundamentals of what the internet was built on, and because people would put up websites NOT to jump up in search engines, but to give their website visitor a whole bunch more websites to try out other than their own.
And is that so bad?
Is it so bad to link to someone elses website because you like it? Or even better – because it’s relevant to your current visitors? Hey I don’t know the google algorithm maybe it is! Maybe big bad google is gonna come to my website, see me linking to a relevant site, and say “FUCK HIM. Pardon my French….but FUCK HIM” and steal all my PR, drop me down in the rankings and you’ll never hear of good ol Dealer Dan again.
But hey guess what – I’m going to run the risk of that by linking to websites that will actually help you guys become better poker affiliates, and I’ll do this on a regular basis. Let’s start with a guy called Randy Ray. He used to do the SEO for Pokerstars, and he now runs PokerSEO.org. Asides from being a down to earth, very friendly guy, he’s also an expert on search engine optimization. If you want to know about search engine optimization for poker, then Randy’s site should be one of your first bookmarks. It’s a subject I haven’t covered too much in detail but that he talks about specifically.
People always ask me “What’s the secret to making money online?”. To me, there IS no secret. Don’t get stressed about page layout, excess code, W3C validation, meta tags, competitive keywords, google rankings, pagerank, and the millions of other things that most webmasters worry about on a daily basis. When I create a site, my plan is to always create the best website possible for my target market. I want my visitors to come, and get what they want out of my website. And if they can’t get what they want, then I should be able to offer them places elsewhere to go. Make your website visitor happy and satisfied first – the rest will follow.