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Link building maintenance is the latest sub-specialty of the search engine specialist. It used to be that the major hurdle most businesses faced was getting a website created and launched. In the dawning days of the Internet, just having a site catapulted a firm’s marketing savvy factor over the wall, positioning them as daring early-adopters. And then the Internet actually caught on, and business owners soon realized their websites needed to be more than a single static page they designed and wrote themselves. With the advent of Google came a new quest – to make it to the top of page one for the search engine results, and along with it, a new skill set was developed: search engine optimization and marketing.A large piece of SEO/SEM is link building, and just like brushing your teeth, this is not a task you can do once and be done with it. A link building strategy is a long-term deal. Essentially, the way link building works is a lot like feeding a stray cat. Google’s bots are the cat, and your links are kitty food you leave in strategic places online to get Google to purr, rub against your ankles, and mark you with the honor of being on the first page. Just like with a stray cat, it can take a while for the bots to notice the food you leave out. But once they find it, they start expecting it on a somewhat regular basis. Night after night, the cat comes looking for food. But cats (and Google bots) being finicky as they are, have some mysterious and seemingly arbitrary rules about what they’ll eat, how often they want to be served, and where they’ll eat from. Displease them, and you’re likely to find yourself in the bottom of a cat litter box (except with Google, it’s called “The Sandbox”) where you’ll be lucky to ever see the light of day again.There’s a delicate balance called for in link building maintenance. By publishing content and creating backlinks too often, you risk being spurned as a spammer. The penalty, much like being skeeved by a cat, is banishment. By failing to publish sufficient new content and creating backlinks too slowly, you risk handing the top spots on Google for your keywords to your competitors on a silver platter. Cats aren’t known for waiting patiently for what they want. They just move onto the next person who’ll feed them. Your regularity of link building maintenance is just as important as where you put those links. It used to be that unrelated sites could swap links and shoot to the top of the search engine results. Site owners and webmasters spent thousands of dollars buying links from indiscriminate sites – the more links, the better. Now, Google’s much more particular about those links. If they’re not on relevant sites, they are worthless, and even harmful.An expert in link building maintenance must remain committed to staying current with the trends in the SEO/SEM industry. While Google’s ways can be mysterious, one thing is clear: moderation is better than overload. Neither neglect your link building practice, nor go into overkill – either one can fling your site into oblivion.