Backlinking is the #1 goal when implementing smart link building techniques, and on of the root evaluation parameters in Google’s search result algorithm.
In fact, Google has stated that links, along with high-quality content, share the #1 spot in their search algorithm, taking the lead over hundreds of other vectors that establish site ranking across the internet.
Obviously, if you’re website’s rank is important to you (and, of course, it is) it’s vital to know how to create dynamic, search-engine-friendly, lead-generating backlinks that benefit both yourself, and the sites that are linking back to you.
Here are four of my favorite link building techniques:
Never pay for links as it’s a violation of Google’s terms of service.
A backlink is created when one website links a page, post, image, or other content to another. Sometimes referred to as “inbound links” or “incoming links.” backlinks are an important part of any link building strategy, and a key to successful SEO.
1. Link Reclamation
If it’s broke, fix it.
Link reclamation is your first (and simplest) link building step. There’s no point in pounding the virtual sidewalk looking for new links, until you know that the links you already have are in good working order.
Free link-checking browser extensions like My Links (Chrome) or LinkMiner crawl through your website and identify both valid as well as broken links. Fixing broken links is not only good for SEO but helps avoid the risk of frustrating your visitors with dead-end links and error messages.
You can use these same extensions to check the outbound links posted on other high-value websites; specifically, ones that post on topics related to your own.
Send a message to the person running the page, politely informing them of the broken link, along with a link to one of your own related posts as a quick and easy replacement.
2. Guest Posting
Start with people you know, who have blogs where your content will be relevant and valuable to their readers.
Use anchor text and key words (of course) but don’t stuff your content to the point that it’s obvious or annoying. Just like on your own site, your best results are always going to come from your best work, posts that trade value for the reader’s time.
If you know the site owner, don’t be afraid to ask for a brief (1-2 sentence) introduction/testimonial from them, leading into your post. A loyal following is much more likely to read the entire post and follow links, if someone they are already following (and trust) recommends it.
2. Forum and Blogposts Comments
Once you’ve guest posted on those “low hanging fruit” sites, branch out to niche user groups, chatrooms, Facebook groups, etc., and engage with their members.
Ask and answer questions, be helpful, and just generally become that guy (or gal) who everyone’s happy to see, before you start promoting your own site. People who like you, are far more likely to visit and engage on your site.
Be advised: due to flagrant trolling and abuse, many groups don’t allow outbound links in posts, but you can add always add your URL to your profile.
3. Testimonials & Reviews
Testimonial link building is a win for everyone.
Not only are you helping a niche-related company build customer trust, but you will often get a backlink (or include one in your review), increased traffic, and new followers who feel a “trust by association” after reading your testimonial.
Don’t just leave a “Great Product!” review, either. Go in-depth on what features you like and why, how the product is better than its competitors, etc.
Get the SME (Subject Matter Expert) cred before the reader even clicks on your link!
4. Start a Blog
When it comes to link-building techniques, this is the top of the mountain!
Having a well thought out, informative, and value-adding blog is the fast-track to becoming an SME in your niche.
Some general tips for blogging:
Post regularly: at least weekly and get a number of relevant posts published quickly after you launch. A single blog post is not a blog. You want multiple pieces of content (cross-linked of course) available to make it clear that you offer valuable information on your subject.
Stay focused: it’s great to have the occasional personal anecdote or bit of humor to humanize your site, but the majority of your content should be aimed at offering innovations and solutions on your subject of expertise.
SEO and link building techniques in Charlottesville and elsewhere continue to evolve from year to year, but the basics remain the same.
Link building remains an important and valuable method of expanding our audiences, and these five simple, effective techniques can and will help your page rank higher in searches, bring new readers to your page, and help establish you as a valuable resource in your chosen niche.