10 Actionable Link Building Tips to Boost SEO
You want to get your website noticed and you’ve found some on-page ways to boost your SEO, but now it’s time to go a little further with link building…
So, what is Link Building?
The short answer is simply getting inbound links to your website. Simple right? Well, not so fast. There’s a lot of different factors that go into having a successful link building strategy.
So in a bit more detail: What is link building? Well, try picturing it as an election. Even if you are qualified (or optimized), you still need endorsements to prove that you are a reliable candidate. Inbound links to your site are your endorsements, but not all endorsements are the same. Some “endorsements” can carry much more weight depending on prominent they are.
Now… You have put in all the effort to make an amazing website, so take the next step with these simple link building tips to push your website to the top of search engine’s list!
1. Strive for Relevant Anchor Text
In an ideal world, the anchor text for the link pointing to your site would include keywords that are relevant to your site. Search engines use this text as a hint to the topic of the page that you are being referred to. If you have a bunch of keywords in the anchor text, it should boost your SEO.
Images as Anchors
Search Engines can’t understand images as well as users can, so images don’t carry as much weight when it comes to improving SEO. On the other hand they can still bring in traffic if they are interesting and intriguing enough.
2. Rank Matters
If link building is like an election, and links are like endorsements, it would make sense that some links are much more valuable than others. For example, an endorsement by John Doe will carry much less weight than an endorsement by Donald Trump. Start gunning for well established and authoritative sites to refer back to you, and watch your SEO soar.
What Goes into Page Rank
- Number of links referring to the site
- Page Rank of those links
- Number of links on the originating page
3. Make Sure it Counts!
Links to your website don’t help much if they don’t improve SEO, so make sure that they are indexed, and search engines are using the links you have worked hard to get. Also, watch out for links that are classified by search engines as “no follow” links.
- Social Media sites are generally “no follow” links (Google+ uses follow links)
- Links in comments sections are generally “no follow” links
- Check if a page is indexed using tools like Google Page Index Checker
Google+ is extremely useful for SEO purposes and uses “follow” links
4. Aim for Trustworthy Sites
Search engines use cues to determine whether the references on the page are relevant. When you are launching a link building campaign, you should cater your efforts towards sites that are considered trustworthy sites.
- Educational sites (.edu)
- Newspaper’s Sites
- “.org” sites
- “.gov” sites
5. Submit Blog Posts to Other Blogs
Submitting you own blog articles to other blogs is an easy way to control the links that are directing back to you, but the key is getting blogs to use your content. With that said, you can’t just load your blog article with links and keywords just to get the SEO benefits, it has to be entertaining. Another tip would be to offer your site to a blog’s reference page. Look for blogs that are relevant to your business and talk to them about the getting on a list of links if you are able to provide them value.
How to Get Noticed
Write good, relevant content!
- Make your content easy to read and accessible
- Aim for popular content (keep up with trends)
6. Reach Out to Guest Bloggers
A great tactic to use in your link building campaign is to reach out to guest bloggers and convince them to write about you. Bloggers won’t just write about you for no reason, so give them a good reason to write. Make sure you have add value to them and offer a unique selling premise.
Get Bloggers Blogging
- Offer a discount to the blogger
- Create a contest for guest bloggers
- Offer giveaways for writing about you
7. Give Your 2 Cents in Online Discussions
Keep an eye on forums that are relevant to your business, to answer questions or comments. The key to successfully using this tactic is to provide a valuable response or else it will be dismissed as spam. Forums sometimes provide “no follow” links, but they are not as common as they are in comment sections. By providing a user with a relevant answer you can not only get the SEO benefits, you also create a new potential customer! Similar to forums, linking in a question and answer site is another great link building tactic.
How to Get Started
- Identify relevant forums
- Use signature line to insert a link
- Provide value and bring in customers directly
- Use sites like Yahoo Answers
8. Leverage Your Own Sites
As mentioned before, link building can be difficult and frustrating when it is out of your control, so take advantage of what you do control. Brainstorm to think about any pages that you can put links in to boost your SEO. Instead of hoping that the link is using relevant keywords, you can go in and anchor your link with whatever keyword text you hope to optimize for. Also, make sure to link to other pages within the website.
- Your company blog
- Other sites you control
- Your Google+ Profile
9. Use Link Bait
Link bait is posting something with a back-link that is so interesting that it attracts people who share it. The more it is shared, the more back-links you get to your website. Link bait won’t work every time, but it’s a simple link building tactic to implement and it could help boost your SEO.
Give These a Try
- Free Giveaways
- Conduct an Interview
- Post a joke or funny video
- Post a cute picture
10. Check Your Competition
When you think you are out of link building ideas, turn to your competitors and see what they are doing. Your competitors are a good benchmark to compare yourself, because you generally have the same ultimate goal. You can reach out to other sites that have already shown that they are willing to connect. Try using a SWOT (Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) to analyze the link building strategies and implement them to improve your SEO!
Link building can be hard. Even if you are optimized very well for a keyword, search engines may skip over you, if you don’t have any references, or links back to your page. Make sure your website is getting the attention it should by using these link building basics.