10 Ways to Reinvent Your Link Building
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Link building is an effective way to earn authority and build visibility online. With the right amount of creativity and determination, your link profile can lead to a steady stream of search engine traffic, email subscribers and – ultimately – more sales for your business.
However, with so many websites using the same techniques, establishing yourself as a leader in your niche is not as easy as it once was.
Earning high-quality backlinks from trusted websites requires creativity and determination. Still, sometimes the methods you’ve been using successfully for years will stop working. When this happens, it’s time to shake up your strategy.
Luckily, there are a variety of link building methods that don’t require large amounts of money, time or resources. So if you want to make your site relevant again, here are 10 ways to reinvent your link building.
Brainstorm new ideas
Before you start switching up your link building, you need to get the whole team together for a brainstorming session. It’s important not to dive into anything before you’ve clarified:
- What’s not working
- Why it’s not working
- The purpose of your link building (to build site authority, increase brand awareness, find more referrals?)
- Possible solutions
Throughout the brainstorming process, you should keep one eye on the competition. Checking out your competitors is a cost and time-effective method of identifying new link building tends. You may also stumble across new contacts, outreach methods or content ideas.
You can automate the process of checking competitor links by setting up Google Alerts or SEMrush reports.
To change your link building strategy from the ground up, you can:
- Use a different search engine than Google, such as Bing or Yahoo.
- Search in different Google categories such as images, news, and videos.
- Play around with different keywords and search terms: make a list of at least 20 potential keywords for your niche. Remember that ranking for a keyword will be useless if there’s no one searching for it. You may wish to use a keyword that’s part of your business name. Studies have shown that business names featuring keywords rank 1.5 X higher than those without.
- Use a different link prospecting tool.
- Change your surroundings: get out of the office or try coming up with new strategies at different times of the day.
When brainstorming, always draw back to why you are building links in the first place. Don’t view it as yet another sales strategy. Be specific about your link building goals.
Focus on your brand
Marketing experts talk often talk about “brand immersion” when working with clients. Whether you’re building links for your business or someone else’s, you need to have a keen understanding of the brand, including:
- Niche market
- Target audience
Don’t assume everybody knows what the brand is and what it does. They don’t – that’s what branding is there for. If you want your links to be relevant and position you as an authority in your market, you need to stay consistent with your brand.
Streamline your link requests
Sending link requests should be a core part of your link building strategy. The most common outreach method is via email.
Your email should also include the following details:
- Clear subject line
- The site owner’s name and website URL
- Your name
- The URL you want them to link to
- A short description of your site
- Your email address and phone number
Remember that most people have an attention span of fewer than eight seconds. Therefore, this is all the time you have to make your point. Make sure the purpose of your outreach is clear from the start, and don’t fluff it up with unnecessary detail.
Improve your content
According to Google Search Quality Strategist, the two most important signals for ranking websites are link building and quality content.
Luckily, the two practices go hand-in-hand: the key to earning quality inbound links is to make sure your content is engaging. The average person spends less than 59 seconds on a web page. After that, if they re not interested, they’ll bounce.
If you want to keep your audience hooked, you need to create powerful, valuable content. Content should be skim-friendly, visually appealing and written in clear, concise language that can be understood by an eight-year-old.
List posts receive 74% more links than any other content type, so these can help you increase your inbound links.
It’s a well-known fact that high-quality content also helps your site rank in Google. This is because Google’s job is to deliver valuable content to its users. Google is focused on the ever-evolving user experience (UX).
“Google’s main priority is user experience, so developing a positive UX is the simplest way to stay ahead of algorithmic and industry change.” – SEO Kristopher Jones, SEO expert.
Remember that ranking high in Google takes time. The ultimate goal is to secure links that immediately drive relevant traffic and conversions to your site.
Build interactive data
When executed with proper outreach, it’s possible to earn better quality links by building interactive data into your content.
Interactive data visualisation is not just visually appealing; it’s often the most engaging, memorable and effective communication tool. Why? Because you’re allowing your audience to educate themselves, rather than merely presenting them with the facts.
Social platforms like Twitter and Facebook can be highly effective link building tools. While you shouldn’t ask for links without building relationships first, you can connect with others in your industry and expand your outreach.
Through social media, you can:
- Share content
- Boost SEO
- Work with influencers and PPC marketers who can promote backlinks to your site.
- Focus on building good relationships with bloggers and influencers in your niche so that they endorse your brand.
- Follow competitors on social media, comment on their activity and try to engage their audience.
Get in the press
Press releases are a powerful way to earn links. However, these days space on news platforms is competitive. You won’t get press for nothing – you need to do something newsworthy and publicise it.
Again, you should nurture your relationships with professionals who can get you into the spotlight. Become familiar with editors, journalists and contributors in your industry. Engaging with them online gives you access to their audience. Plus, if you a have value to share, nurturing these professional relationships can be mutually beneficial. Just start off by asking for links though. You have to give a little in return.
You’re probably aware of the link-building benefits of blogging, but do follow a content marketing strategy? Do you blog consistently enough, on other sites as well as your own?
If your answer to this question is no, then you should start contributing to other sites in your niche. Writing for publications your audience know and trust is not only great for backlinks, but it also adds to your credibility.
This is backed up by link-building statistics. According to multiple surveys, guest posting has seen a 112% increase in interest since 2005.
To find relevant websites for guest posting, you should start with the following search terms:
“write for us” [niche or topic]
“submit guest post” [niche or topic]
“guest post guidelines” [niche or topic]
Ideally, you should find websites where you can put a “dofollow” link within the article. Reports show that links in footers and sidebars aren’t worth as much as links found in the middle of a page’s body content.
What’s the difference between a “nofollow” and a “dofollow” link?
”nofollow” is the tag added to a link that tells search engines not to count it as an endorsement. For SEO purposes, you want to get “dofollow” links whenever possible.
You may also consider sharing content via other channels, such as podcasting or YouTube. Starting a podcast is a powerful way to reach a large audience. For this to be effective, you’ll need to produce valuable content to give people reason to link to you.
Republishing old blog posts with new images and content can boost organic traffic by 110%, so don’t be afraid to re-share relevant posts.
Monitor your backlink profile
Without monitoring your backlinks, you have no way of growing your link-building strategy. It’s important to see which sites are providing your backlinks you so you can build on those relationships. This way, you know what you’re doing right and where you need to rethink your strategy.
Other websites might not tell you when they provide a backlink. Therefore, monitoring your backlink profile is the only way to keep on top of your link profile.
You can also use software like Monitor Backlinks to keep track of keywords as well as backlinks. The data you see here is a great place to start your keyword research.
Are you an expert in your industry? If so, then publishing unique, difficult-to-find data is a great way to earn links to your site.
Publishing the raw facts isn’t enough in itself, however. You have to go beyond that stats and offer your own insights. Anything quotable is a bonus. As an expert, your opinion will be highly valuable to other bloggers and contributors in your market.
With so many different approaches, link building can feel overwhelming. However, if you’re not getting the results you want, it’s time to take a step back and evaluate your efforts.
Google now puts more emphasis on positive user experience than businesses trying to improve their SEO. This means you need to focus on building backlinks through genuine relationships and methods.
Spam is no longer acceptable, and negative SEO can get you penalised by Google. Therefore, you need to focus on improving your organic search by building an authentic online presence and creating evergreen content. These 10 tips will help you do just that.
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