Some forums use the tag “rel=nofollow” on their links, especially the link in signatures and posts.
This tag tells search engines not to follow those links, rendering them useless from a purely SEO standpoint.
Of course, those links are still extremely useful if the forum gets a significant amount of traffic. People will see your posts and visit your links, so they are still important.
Still, if your main purpose is to get backlinks, you need to check the links on each forum to make sure the links do not have the “rel=nofollow” tag on them.
You also need to check the forum rules carefully.
Rules regarding signatures and links in posts vary widely from forum to forum, so it’s important to check every forum carefully.
A forum signature is a small section of text (and sometimes images) that you can set to appear at the end of every post you make. Some forums allow links in signatures, and some don’t. Others allow certain types of links, but not others.
In your signature, you should link to your site, making sure to follow the rules regarding signatures. Don’t call attention to your signature in any way, because this is a good way to get banned. Even if you don’t get banned, you could end up alienating people who begin to see you as an opportunistic spammer instead of a potentially trusted authority.
Forum marketing is a bit time consuming. It’s easier if all you’re looking for is backlinks, but if you want to make the most of it, you should still try to get people to visit your site.
This will require you to post friendly, knowledgeable messages on a somewhat regular basis. If your posts are too short, or are off topic, people won’t begin to respect you.
Forum marketing can be very powerful if used correctly. You have the potential to get a lot of quality traffic on top of your backlinks if you’re willing to put in the extra effort to make yourself known and respected on the forums you post on.
If you’re in it for the backlinks, you can post less. Just be sure to keep your posts on topic, respond thoughtfully, and always be as friendly and respectful as possible.
Also remember to follow the rules carefully. It takes a bit of time and effort to post on forums. If you get banned, all of the links you have accumulated will disappear, and your time will be wasted.
You can find high-traffic forums in many niches here: Big-boards.com
This site lists over 2,000 forums in many different niches. If you can’t find a forum in your niche here, then try searching for some of the following phrases in Google:
- “your niche” forum
- “your niche” message board
- “your niche” bulletin board