Google is notorious for not reporting the actual links pointing to a site. Don't rely heavily upon that information to gauge the inbound links. You should also use MSN and Yahoo to get a better evaluation.
As far as free directories/article submissions, I agree to a point. I wouldn't spend a ton of time submitting to hundreds of free directories and article submissions. I would include them in the linking strategy. That's just my opinion.
#Above commands shows number of backlinks for that site in Google.
just type "sitename" in google search box then I see 50-60 links.
Here 2 cases are possible:
#If you are searching "www.site.com" then you will get back total links for that site in Google means how many times term "www.site.com" is appering whether it is appering between the text or as a clickable link.
#If you are serching only "sitename" then it will return how many times term "sitename" is appering it can also appear within the text or within a clickable link.
writing an article to free article directory may not be a good idea as google will reject it as a link after sometime and same goes to free submission directory.
I want to say that writing article and submit them to article submission sites is not bad (but 1 or 2 articles per week).