Building links to your site is one of those things that is far from glamorous.
… It can be downright mind numbing at times…
But it is one of the primary reasons the sites ranked above you are there.
So the question is, do you want to complain about how boring it is, like a little child, or get on with the task of building your business?
A strong backlink profile is crucial for any business trying to get customers through the search engines. Unless you have the budget to spend a ton of money on Pay Per Click.
I like to think of SEO as paying off a mortgage to own a house, and PPC as renting.
Some great methods you may want to think about are:
- Guest Posting
- Building Hub Articles
- Web 2.0 Mini Sites
- Business Citations
- Commenting On Industry Blogs
- Supercharged Linkbuilding
If you’re a writer (ie you enjoy writing), the best method for building quality links to your site is through guest posting.
To do this, you approach a website owner and offer them an article written by you that they can publish on their site.
At some point in the article there will be a link back to your site, possibly in the blurb.
The key to this is to follow that site for a while and see what they talk about. Make sure what you offer the owner is your highest quality work tailored specifically to their site and audience.
If you leave comments on those blogs (see below), the owners will start to get to know you. Especially if you leave insightful comments.
Then you won’t be a stranger when you see an opportunity to offer them an article.
This works so well because you’re getting usually a pretty solid link from a site with a fair bit of authority and relevance.
At the same time exposing your work to a wider audience. So make sure it’s your best work.
Done right, you’ll get far more benefit than merely the link.
If you’re wondering where PBNs fit into the equation, we consider them a variation of guest posting.
Think about it – you’re basically just acting as the blog owner and the guest poster at the same time. In fact, the most effective PBNs should look like an independent blog.
When I wrote this article in 2012, I spoke about Squidoo and Hubpages, which were hugely popular at the time, but have since basically shut down.
The strategy is essentially using web 2.0 sites for their “hub” articles.
You build an authority base on those sites by publishing great, useful content.
The more you create and engage, the better return you’ll get. Think of them as social media for article marketing.
One of the best examples in 2016 is Storify (see our Storify profile here).
You can easily bring in resources like articles, videos or pictures, into Storify’s editing area. With a bit of clicking and dragging you have your article outline.
Add your text commentary, hit publish and you have a hub article.
The key with these is that they are built on 3rd party, high Domain Authority platforms.
Linking out to lots of useful resources is encouraged on a hub article. Make sure to include a link to your site inside there.
Web 2.0 Mini Sites
Originally I had Article Directories in here.
But that was 2012 and times have changed.
I recommended to only work with a few of the major article directories, like Ezine Articles, Buzzle, iSnare and Go Articles.
That worked fantastically back in the day, but the way people use the web has changed. As a result, article directories are deserted.
They’ve lost visitors, so Google stopped favouring them, as they should.
The method I and many others have used to replace that are what I call “Web 2.0 Mini Sites”.
These are areas on web 2.0 platforms like WordPress, Blogger, Google Sites and Weebly.
Weebly has recently gone to a paid model, which is annoying. But I think it will protect the integrity of the platform long term, so I’m happy to pay for it.
The idea with a Web2Mini is to focus on one small aspect of your industry. Or focus on a small location for it.
Build out at least 5 pages which would be helpful for someone looking for information on that aspect or location.
The more pages, the better. But you start to run into IT debt the more resources you devote to it.
Link from the most relevant page on the Web2Mini to the most relevant page on your Money Site.
If you’re doing Local SEO for a client or your business, you should get the business listed in as many of the top local directories as possible.
This means Yellow Pages, Yelp, Foursquare, Truelocal (not recommending them any more because their schema is sketchy, their site doesn’t render properly and links behave strangely), Bing Local, Facebook Local, etc.
Fill out the business listing as much as possible. Use all the real estate you have.
If you’re in a competitive industry in Australia, paying for the lowest level of Sensis can sometimes be a good idea, as you’ll get (nofollow) links to your site from Yellow Pages, White Pages and several other sister sites.
Commenting On Industry Blogs
I’ve dealt with this before and it is still one of the most popular articles on this site.
It doesn’t take much to leave a comment. Make sure it adds to the discussion and you’ll often find it gets approved.
Blog commenting has been dealt a harsh hand, I feel. Justifiably so, because it was spammed to death.
But as writers, we want our audience to engage back, or it feels like we’re talking into a void.
Many of the comments will be nofollowed, and that’s absolutely fine. The point is to have links from within the industry going to your client’s site.
It’s not normal for a website to only have dofollow links using its main search terms for anchor text.
You need to add those blog comments, placing the website in a part of the web surrounded by other sites more popular in the industry.
All the above is great, but the step most people leave out is the last one.
You need to build links to the pages linking to your site.
I could get into detail about how spam filters and trust rank work, but that’s for another time.
Suffice it to say that if you aren’t linking to the pages that are linking to your site you’re wasting most of your effort.
If you link to your clients’ Tier 1 links you’ll keep those links in Google’s index.
At the same time, particularly for the Web2Minis, you’ll boost the power of Tier 1, which will have a flow on effect for the money site.
This is the basis of Domain Authority Stacking by Jimmy Kelley, which I’ve reviewed before:
If you don’t link to those pages, they’ll quickly drop out of the search engine index, largely negating all the work you did to craft it in the first place.
You’ll always have some lower quality articles (or can outsource some from places like Upwork or iNeedArticles).
Use those to build links to the pages linking to your site. Post them to lower authority article directories, free blogs:
- LiveJournal, etc
Send social signals to them from:
Building links to the pages linking to you creates a powerful network of sites all linking to your site.
You’re basically building an impenetrable moat around your rankings.
Anyone using tools to check your backlinks often won’t understand how you can be ranked higher than them with less links.
The secret is that you will have higher quality links than them.
There’s many more ways to build links to your site, but these are the main ones you’ll use in most circumstances.
I’ve used them to garner a lot of first position rankings. Many people only ever need to use these.
Go forth and build links.
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