Link building is an SEO tactic that can be a challenging process, requiring quite a bit of necessary time and effort to be implemented correctly. Despite its demanding nature, link building has certainly proved to be a tried and true fundamental white-hat SEO tactic for years now and likely for many more years to come.
Don't believe the hype: Link building is anything but dead.
In a February, 2014 Google Webmaster video Matt Cutts stated that, "...backlinks, even though there's some noise and certainly a lot of spam, for the most part are still a really, really big win in terms of quality for search results." Meaning that link building is still a crucial step to be made by any company seeking to be seen in the SERP's.
Here are 7 tips and tricks to help you ensure that your business is building links properly.
Research, Test, Publish
Any research conducted by your company can be useful to others in your niche. Don't be fearful of putting this information out there as it is going to be found anyway, but by publishing it yourself you reap the clicks and benefits. Studies on how users interact, shop, make purchases within your industry, or anything else that is data based is content gold. These kinds of posts are highly linkable because people love reports on data findings. Also be sure to publish A/B tests that worked in favor of your site, case studies that may have increased productivity or morale around the office, or anything else that your audience may find useful or informative as great content is sure to acquire backlinks.
Not only are you looking to utilize images for the content that gets posted, but you may want to also establish an image gallery of copyright free stock photos. This way you have a gallery of images available for use, granted that it is linked back to the origin. Since images are truly the backbone of digital content, this can have a myriad of benefits.
Boilerplates and Bios
A boilerplate briefly describes your company and company's mission in just a few sentences and is usually found at the end of a press release. Optimize this precious space wisely as it is typically included if the release gets attention and used by another source. Be sure that you are getting your brand out there. Additionally, make executive bios and interviews accessible on your site, complete with optimized links.
Internal links provide passage from one section of a website to another by providing clear avenues to relevant content for both the user and Google-bots. One of the finest ways to link to additional webpages on your site is by optimizing the homepage to act as the authority of relevant and useful information. But don't simply stop there, create additional backlinks by thinking locally. Explore the nearly limitless supply of local resources such as the city directory or local chamber of commerce as they are likely to happily link back to you.
Get Involved in the Community
Not all of your link building needs to be digital. Think of community connectivity as the old school way to generate links; it may not be a digital tactic, but depending on your business, it could be immensely powerful. Get involved with your local commonwealth by:
Hosting or sponsoring events that are relevant to your industry as they are sure to draw attention
Holding a contest or giveaway; the allure of a free prize is enough to draw in a lot of people and is a memorable way for a brand to present itself
Working with charities you are passionate about as a way of giving back. Donate time, money, or even promotional efforts to help spread the word. This one is quite likely to get your company mentioned, but remember, it's just about helping out others who are in need, not necessarily the links. That's just the icing on the cake. If you make charitable efforts all about your own gains, it will likely backfire. Give for the sake of giving first and foremost.
Crowdsource, Crowdsource, Crowdsource
Survey experts in your field and compose the findings in a blog post. Again, content featuring data findings is highly linkable, and if you are asked to participate in a crowdsourced article you will receive a link there too. Another great way of crowdsourcing is to participate in a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) as this is a fantastic tool for building a community. Also be sure to write testimonials and reviews for products that you do in fact use and are willing to endorse as you are likely to receive a backlink here as well.
It is quite obvious that link building still plays a pivotal role to remaining relevant in today's constantly evolving SEO landscape. Putting forth the required dedication to implement this tactic properly is a must if a company intends to succeed with their SEO strategy. The most valuable thing to recognize when building links is to keep your customer top of mind.
What are some of your favorite sure-fire link building strategies? What tactics have you used that have yielded positive results for your business?
About The Author:
Tina Courtney-Brown, Digital producer, online marketer, community manager, and multi-faceted writer Tina Courtney-Brown has been managing cross-functional teams for online businesses since 1996. Tina has assisted many clients in maximizing online production and marketing efforts, and is one of the Web's foremost webmaster and tech news blogs. She's produced and marketed innovative content for major players like Disney and JDate, as well as boutique startups galore, with fortes including social media, SEO, massively multiplayer games, community management, social networks, and project management. Tina is also a certified Reiki practitioner, herbalist, nonprofit director and spiritual counselor. Learn more at her personal website