Assuming an appropriate amount of on-page optimization has been done, and a sites structure is good, how does a small local business acquire links without resorting to purchasing them?
The numerous free directories are obvious candidates (DMOZ, local.google.com, local.yahoo.com, superpages.com, infousa.com, botw.org and others).
Beyond these, where else can I acquire legitimate links?
A couple of my competitors are ranked higher than I am because of what looks like bogus (purchased or traded) links. Is my only option to produce content on my site relevant to our business and hope that my content gets linked to? I believe I could do so, but it would be very time consuming and I have a business to run!