Boosting your Page Rank (PR) is an organic way to improve your search engine results. Backlinks are the backbone of building a strong PR but can be challenging to obtain. Posting to directories and submitting articles does help for sure. However, many times the backlinks they give you have a tag called “nofollow” associated with them. This means that the search engines won’t give these links as much weight. Purchasing backlinks from a “backlink farm” does also work but the quality of the links are poor and they quickly fizzle-out. Then you find yourself buying more links to replace them. The PR of the backlinks matters more than the quantity of them. You can have 100,000 PR zero links and your page would still be a PR zero. However, you get one solid PR 7 (very hard to get) and you could very quickly become a PR 4.
As mentioned, it can be a challenging task that you may need to execute over an extended period of time. Having something unique and of value on your site is the best way to organically attract new traffic and backlinks. For a few examples, the ‘sticky’ item may be informational, a promotional offer, or industry related tools, etc.