Setting up a LinkedIn profile is an excellent way to build valuable links back to your site. You can optimise the anchor text and add unique content to give profiles additional authority.
For those that have been hiding under a rock, LinkedIn is a popular business networking tool that helps you connect with fellow professionals in your chosen sector. Anyone can set up a profile detailing their work experience and employment history.
You have the opportunity to link back to your domain on three separate occasions which can only be a good thing (especially from a site with a PR of 9). The links are nofollowed (not that this matters in my opinion) but they are still picked up in Google Webmaster Tools and all main link analysis tools.
Every business should set up a company account. LinkedIn profiles are very strong and can often appear high up in Google search results. Setting up a profile will help with brand protection and give you another way to dominate brand related rankings. You also get three links back to your site, a variety of citations and the opportunity to network with your target audience.
Having appropriate anchor text can help search engines understand the context of a specific URL on your domain. You wouldn’t want to be too aggressive with this technique – 30% keyword 70% brand name tends to be the ‘anchor text sweet spot’.
LinkedIn provides the perfect opportunity to use anchor text, see below:
If you run a medium to large company it would be worth getting each employee to set up their own staff profile. Not only will this include additional links back to your domain but it will help search engines understand the size of your company. Each profile will include valuable citations which can also contribute to search engine rankings for your brand.
As with any backlink content is king, LinkedIn profiles should have lots of unique content and be updated regularly. An easy way to keep the account fresh is to populate the profile with a stream of regular blog posts. Similar to Twitter you can strengthen the profile by building up a list of credible connections.
If you encourage employees to set up ‘staff profiles’ this will provide search engines with valuable citations and help you gain credibility. The links may not be followed but the use of anchor text is well worth employing in your overall strategy.
Working in new media for over 8 years, Oliver Ewbank has worked for a range of brands including eBay and SportBusiness.com on SEO, PPC and Social Media Management. He has won awards for his SEO work and been featured in a number of publications, including Virgin online.