Backlinks are exceedingly important to boosting a website’s SEO efficiency and one of the most important metrics in increasing online visitors.
Backlinks are websites that link back to your site. They’re vital in helping grow your organic search traffic.
If you’re a digital marketing agency, think of it as fingers pointing your direction when someone asks who to call for the most innovative and foolproof web design, internet marketing and SEO help.
The formula is simple: The more authoritative websites that link back to you, the higher your Google ranking. The higher your Google ranking is, the more traffic your website receives.
The key is finding ways to get quality backlinks to your site. Below are the five best backlink strategies that have proven reliable in increasing SEO results.
5 winning backlink strategies:
1. Guest posting
Guest blogging for other websites is one of the most effective ways to reach new audiences and also create authoritative backlink opportunities for you.
Publishing articles or blogs on other popular websites will get your content in front of a new audience and give you more exposure that ultimately results in more leads. This strategy not only gets you a quality backlink but also builds your brand and can enhance your social media following.
Guest blogging is an ideal way to expand your reach by leveraging your relationships.
And it’s a win-win for both sites: One gets free, high-quality content to share with their audience and the other receives an authoritative backlink that will increase your SEO rankings.
The key is to identify appropriate websites to target when guest-blogging. In other words: How you can get the most bang for your time.
An obvious target is to guest blog for well-known industry publications. Look for any within your field that accept guest contributions. Go browse their sites and see if they’re already posting articles and blogs from guest contributors.
Also, make sure you’re scoping out your competitors’ sites. If a site is already publishing guest content it’s more likely to also publish your content. If you find an author who shows up as a guest-blogger on multiple sites you can use a Google search of that author’s name (“by author name”) to see what sites you could also target for submissions.
You can find websites that accept guest articles by using a Google search with a combination of key words, such as “write for us” or “submit an article” or “become a contributor” or “guest posts.”
You can perform similar searches on social media, such as Facebook and Twitter, to find other guest-posting opportunities to build your backlink portfolio.
Make sure that when publishing guest posts on other sites you link to your social media profiles to leverage your brand even more.
2. Business directories
One of the quickest and easiest ways for new sites to establish strong backlinks is to get your business listed on web directories.
Directory backlinks should be one of the first steps for new sites because they’re a guaranteed way to get authoritative backlinks without much effort.
Business directory backlinks will also help build trust for your website and give it domain authority. Your brand awareness will also grow with each listing, providing instant returns without any heavy-lifting.
There are hundreds of directories you can use, including many that are industry specific. Many directories offer free listings and some offer paid opportunities. Maximize the free listings first before pursuing others. For many it’s just as easy as finding the directory and submitting your information. That will then serve as a way to send referral traffic to your site.
3. Broken link building
We’ve all experienced broken links on even the most reputable and well-maintained websites we frequent.
Broken links serve as a major deterrent for a site’s traffic and profitability. Remember how frustrated you were the last time you reached a broken link on a website? It’s a good bet that you didn’t stay on that site much longer.
Broken links are common throughout the web because sites often move their content around and can lead to pages that no longer exist, leaving users with the irritating experience of reaching a 404 error page. This also leads to inefficiencies for search engines that crawl and index websites.
Broken link building is a way to fix a website’s problem and can in return give your site valuable backlink opportunities.
To take advantage of this strategy you first have to find broken links on other websites and then offer that site the chance to fix their broken link with a link to relevant content. Of course, that will be content on your site.
This is a win-win for both sites. You’ve fixed a problem for another site while also providing a valuable backlink opportunity for your site. You don’t even have to create new content because you could use content you already feature on your site.
One way you can easily find broken links on web pages is to download and install the Google Chrome plugin called Check my Links.
4. Become a source
One of the best ways to get a quality backlink is be used as a trusted source in a news article or other online content. Position yourself as an expert in your field and reach out to writers and bloggers.
Think of this strategy in the same way you would your public relations approach. Whatever way you’re using to bring attention to your business through the media could also help you build relationships with media professionals and, in turn, become a source for them in their content.
For example, if you have a digital marketing site and that’s a current story topic for a journalist you could be a relative source for that journalist to use in their copy. And, they could give you a backlink back to your site from their site.
A priority for you should always be getting backlinks on websites that have editorial standards, thus are viewed as more authoritative in Google rankings.
Use your public relations department – if you have one – to leverage their relationships with area media. Or, hire a journalist who already has those connections and can not only provide contacts and help you build relationships with the media but also churn out high-quality, relevant content for other backlink opportunities.
Here’s another helpful way to become a source for journalists: Sign up for Help A Reporter Out (HARO). This service connects journalists with sources in a daily newsletter.
Also, send relevant press releases to local media about your company’s accomplishments. Bloggers and journalists are constantly looking for new information, so make it easy for them. It could pay off big for your business.
5. Compile a resource
Most internal links on your site will feature your original content as part of informational pages and blog posts. But the content you use to earn backlinks doesn’t always have to be original.
Instead, you can compile a resource, like an ebook or webinar, for your audience. Think of this strategy as another service you’re providing in your niche industry.
Put simply: You create something of value and then give it away.
The key is to create resources useful to people who visit your site. They’ll link back to the resource when they use them in their blog posts or other content on their sites.
For example, if you have a plumbing business and you’re looking for ways for other plumbing companies to provide backlinks back to your site a good idea would be to create a list of the top 50 wholesale plumbing parts companies.
This would provide other plumbing companies with a valuable directory for them to help lower their costs. And the list would give you many opportunities to earn backlinks from your competitors and even from those 50 companies you’ve highlighted because you’ve also done a service for them by creating a directory that pushes their products.
That’s a win-win-win in the end.