Even though link building has seen its rise and decline over the years, it still plays one of the most important parts in ranking your website on Google.
Because it can be done (almost) for free and, if executed in the right way, can send new traffic your way and help you reach that number one place on SERPs. Link building builds authority and tells the search engines that your website is to be trusted. If you get links from powerful sites, you’ll become someone worth mentioning and linking back to.
Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it?
However, the one thing you should keep in mind is that finding link building strategies that work is not easy. You need to steer clear from low-quality websites (never, ever, opt for anything low-quality!) and getting links there, and you need to figure out what’s best for you and for your business. It won’t be easy, but once you do, your efforts will pay off.
There’s a number of link building strategies you can use to your advantage out there and I’m going to mention 13 of them in today’s blog post. Remember: these tactics will not only help you get high-quality links, but also write great content and establish valuable relationships with other people in your industry. More useful SEO tactics that you’ll benefit from can be found in our previous blog post: 10 Actionable SEO Tricks To Use In 2017.
So, without further ado, let’s dive right in!
What is it? One of the most used strategies that works for (mostly) older websites.
How does it work? You find sites that have broken links, write to their owners, and suggest they replace those broken links with your own resources, services, or pages. All you need is a tool that will find those links for you, such as ScrapeBox.
Why use this tactic? Not only do you get a backlink that will make your business better, but you also add value to someone else’s website. It’s a win-win! Just keep your content similar to the content that used to be on that broken link.
What’s great about this strategy is that you can actually use it without finding a broken link. You can write to webmasters and ask them to feature whatever it is that you’re offering on their websites. The tricky part? Convincing them to do this. You need to be able to make a strong case and write a persuasive email.
What is it? It’s a certain page on a certain website that has a large number of helpful links and resources related to a particular topic.
How does it work? You find the best possible websites that offer value for your target audience and compile them in a single page. If your target audience features bloggers, then your resource page will contain links towards tips and tricks on how they can grow their readers’ base, make money from their blogs, etc.
Why use this tactic? Aside from being extremely helpful and bringing new traffic your way, resource pages are usually created by reputable websites. This means that you will become (if you’re not already) a known expert in your industry and people will be more likely to link to your website in the future.
Bonus point: Your resource page can contain (internal) links to your own website/blog!
Of course, if you’re not really looking to build your own resource page, you can always try to get featured on one. Bear in mind that whatever content you want to pitch needs to be highly informative and valuable—otherwise, those credible, powerful websites won’t be interested.
What is it? A way for you to use your already written content to get brand new links.
How does it work? It’s pretty straightforward, really. You take a look at your Analytics to see which of your posts (or subpages) performed well in the past and then you come up with a strategy to re-write them so that they fit your current needs better. You can even add a new infographic or another type of visual content to freshen up your articles.
Why use this tactic? Because it requires less time than you trying to find something completely new to write about if a link building opportunity comes up. Plus, it’s a great way for you to get new visitors to your website without having to put too much work into it.
Remember: getting links that lead to your home page and mentions on social profiles is fantastic, but if you really want to make it you need quality content right there on your website. So, use whatever you can and make your content linkable.
What is it? It’s a tactic that you don’t want to miss out on when it comes to link building and SEO. This is the type of content that will never NOT be useful and pretty much awesome.
How does it work? You interview various industry experts and influencers on a certain topic and put all of their opinions in one post for everyone to see. All you have to do is be committed enough to find the right people to answer the questions you have for them.
Why use this tactic? Because this is one of the best ways to get links plus it doesn’t cost you anything (you don’t even have to write the content for it) and you get to collaborate with a number of experts. Those same experts will most likely share your roundup to their own social accounts/blogs/websites, thus giving you the juice you need.
Keep in mind that when reaching out to these influencers you need to be extremely specific about what you need from them. Chances are that they don’t have the time to read novel-long emails. If you don’t manage to get people to participate, you can always take something they’ve already written and then mention them in your post.
What is it? A link building strategy that requires you to exchange links with another website—they link to you, you link to them.
How does it work? You find websites you want to get links from and then you trade links with them. It’s as simple as that.
Why use this tactic? Because it not only helps you get links to your website, but also grow partnerships and relationships with other websites/agencies/etc. Reciprocal link building has been around for quite some time now and it has proven as a valuable strategy for a number of businesses.
There’s one rule to reciprocal link building that you should remember: if the site isn’t high-quality and link-worthy, don’t trade with it. However, since people willing to link back are usually those who need to build their own profiles, you’ll probably stumble upon a bunch of low-quality websites along the way. Try to avoid them as much as possible, because low-quality links cannot be good for your business in any way.
What is it? A strategy that’s been around for ages and that, if done well, can drive a huge amount of traffic to your website/blog.
How does it work? You write a blog post/article for a website other than your own. This post needs to be informative, unique, creative, valuable, and information-packed if you want a credible, authoritative website to accept it.
Why use this tactic? On most websites, webmasters usually place a short bio of the guest poster in question, where you can leave a link to your own website. Some might not even mind if you put a link in the post itself, but most of the time you get the link in the bio. Aside from that, guest posts build brand awareness and help you establish yourself as an expert in your field.
Guest posting isn’t easy. It requires a lot of effort and time, plus some people might not even be willing to put up your post on their website. However, if you manage to do it, you will be able to reap the benefits of your work and establish new connections.
What is it? It’s a way for you to promote your business and get a link back to your website.
How does it work? You find bloggers willing to review your product/service in exchange for a gift. Now, the gift doesn’t necessarily have to be wrapped with a bow on it. You can offer a trial period for your software (which you don’t normally have), an eBook, or a product of yours, and get a lengthy, informative review of what you have.
Why use this tactic? Like I mentioned above, this strategy not only helps you boost brand awareness, but also develop connections with bloggers and get a backlink. Sure, it might cost you something (a product or a discount), but what you get in return is far more valuable.
What’s important to remember is that you do not ask for a link directly in your email—this goes against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. Send the product or trial to the blogger and let them decide if it’s worth reviewing.
What is it? Reviews (see above) are actually similar to this strategy, seeing that you give something for free in return for something else.
How does it work? You offer something to someone else in exchange for a link (but you don’t ask directly for it, remember?). Freebies include templates, icons, photos, tips & tricks, and even guest posts! You can lend a helping hand to someone who needs it and see what you get for your effort.
Why use this tactic? Because it pays off in the long run. If people see that you’re willing to help them out by creating something useful for them, they will link back to you and say nice stuff about your website!
The one downside to all of this (reviews and freebies) is that it can lead to bad coverage, too. A blogger or a journalist can simply decide that they don’t like your product/service and write something bad. However, this shouldn’t discourage you from trying out this tactic.
What is it? We all know what Wikipedia is and how it works, but did you also know that you can use it for link building? It is one of the oldest and most authoritative websites out there, so getting a link on Wiki is definitely something worth investing in.
How does it work? While it’s easy, you need to be clever about building links on Wikipedia. There are three opportunities for you here: dead, broken, or unique links. I’ve already talked about dead/broken links in the text above, but I haven’t mentioned unique links. What you can do is find an article that’s right up your niche, update its content, repair links, and add new (unique) ones.
Why use this tactic? Even though virtually anyone can edit Wiki articles, the traffic coming from it does matter. As I said before, Wikipedia is one of the most authoritative websites in the world, so putting yourself out there can mean a lot for your own website.
What you need to know is this: all content on Wiki passes human moderation first, so don’t put low-quality content in articles just for the sake of your link. You won’t get approved that way. Instead, find or create something relevant that will add value to the article and insert your link along with it.
What is it? A a content-driven link building strategy (technique) that helps you get the best out of both (content marketing and link building) worlds. The term was coined by Brian Dean of Backlinko.com.
How does it work? You find a top-quality piece of content with a number of links and then build up on it. Basically, what you do is make an improved, better version of something that’s already great. You can improve the content, design, or make it longer—it’s up to you, but you have to make it more valuable.
Why use this tactic? It’s in human nature to look for the best possible versions of something. If people see that you know what you’re talking about and have proof to back your story up, they will link back to you.
Brian Dean himself talks about how he managed to double his organic traffic in just 14 days and this is proof of his work. As you can see, the SkyScraper technique does work!
After you’re done updating this fantastic piece of content, you’ll need to reach out to all the right people and promote it. You can use e.g. Ahrefs.com to export all the websites that linked to your competitor’s content (I used Neil Patel as an example for my competitor who has a lot of links, but hopefully yours won’t) and then contact them and tell them you have a more up-to-date or in-depth version of the article. Not everyone will respond, but there are those who will.
What is it? This is a relatively new tactic that can get you valuable link juice. What you do is use sites/resources that have changed domain names, shut down, or moved.
How does it work? You make a list of the websites/resources with changed names etc. and then you find the list of sites linking to them. You let those websites know that their links are outdated and provide them with a link of your own that offers something of value to them.
Why use this tactic? Because people who you reach out to will be grateful for the heads up and will most likely let you put your link on their website. It’s, without a doubt, a fantastic way for you to get links.
This is a tactic similar to broken link building, yes, but the difference lies in the fact that none of these links are actually broken (i.e. error 404). Most of the time, they simply point to an old URL and get redirected to a new location or show the text “page no longer available”.
What is it? A post that features links to some of the best industry-specific articles of the week/month/year. If you’ve got great content, you can easily get a link on one of them.
How does it work? You find websites that publish link roundups, get the author’s contact email, and tell them all about your post. It’s extremely important not to be pushy in your email, but simply suggest why your post is a good fit for that particular roundup.
Why use this tactic? Being featured on a “best of” list is a fantastic way for you to get new followers/visitors and let them know that you’re an expert on a certain subject/in a certain area. Plus, you get to become familiar with other authors and expand your network.
Again, this might take a bit of work on your behalf, seeing that you can’t just offer low-quality content, but I promise it pays off in the end. If you have valuable content to offer, people will want to link to it and read it. In the example above, I was featured without having to deal with outreach, but the point is this is what a link roundup looks like.
What is it? This is a tried-and-tested strategy that definitely works and helps you acquire links towards your website.
How does it work? The first step is to create your very own infographic with outstanding content and design. Next, you need to find websites you’ll reach out to. They have to be within your industry in order to accept your infographic, but what you also need to do is promote your infographic wherever you can.
Why use this tactic? People love visual more than words sometimes, which is why infographics are such a beloved content and link building strategy. They can either be a winning combination of more useful blog posts or simply brand new content that delivers, but what matters is that people want to put infographics on their websites because they’re informative and fun to look at.
Your infographics don’t have to be complicated (take a look at the one we created above); in fact, they can be pretty simple especially if they are value-packed. Plus, a simple infographic will make it more easier for you to react to a certain piece of news and create the said infographic faster. Focus on an effective design and educational content, and you’re good to go.
If you’re looking to promote your brand, boost your traffic, or get new followers, you can pick one of these link building tactics or even more of them. What you shouldn’t forget, however, is that whatever you do, it needs to breathe quality.
People often assume that link building is an easy way for them to get traffic, but they tend to forget that it takes as much effort as doing SEO or social media. If you don’t do it right, you can get a bad reputation fairly quickly and get penalized by Google.
Let’s face it: nobody wants that.
Link building strategies require planning, brainstorming, research, and quality content, but if you do everything right, you will be able to push your business forward and make a name for yourself.
Remember: never settle for low quality. No matter what.
I hope some of these strategies will inspire you to do link building for your own website, in the right, Google-friendly way.
A passionate and skilled content writer with an M.A. in English Language and Literature. Experienced in SEO (with a focus on SEO copywriting), content marketing, and social media. Helps startups and established businesses achieve the best possible results when it comes to content and marketing, in general.
Jun 11. 2017
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