Improving Your Ranking by Getting Linked
While matching a visitor's search criteria might get your page among the results, one of the key factors in bubbling your page to the top of those results is its popularity, as measured by the number and importance of similar pages (outside your site) that link to it. In short, if you get other sites to link to your site, your page will appear higher up in the rankings.
To improve your ranking by getting linked:
Ask sites with similar content if they would link to your site.
Join Web rings of sites with similar content.
Offer to exchange links with sites of similar content.
Make sure to submit your site to major as well as specific search engines.
Don't create bogus domains and then link to your page from there. Search engines can spot this scam from a mile away.
Links from authoritative, high-traffic sites of the same topic are more valuable than links from less authoritative, less visited, or more generic sites.
You can find out who links to you by typing link:yourdomain.com in Google.
Note that the wording of the link and the keywords on the originating page can be almost as important in determining how and whether a page gets listed as the keywords on the page itself. (For more details, do a search for googlebombing.)