Building Successful Backlinks
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There are many different marketing strategies that a business can employ to better connect with their consumer, and finding the most effective method depends on a variety of different factors. For example, the demographic of your target market could mean the difference between a successful cloud marketing campaign and a failed one, as for some audiences paid advertising or word-of-mouth may work better. However, the marketing technique that has grown exponentially in use in recent years is Search Engine Optimization (SEO), the methods of which can help you to boost your website’s rankings on the primary output page of search engine results.
Search Engine Optimization is crucial for driving more traffic to your website from organic online searches. If your website isn’t listed on the first page of a search engine’s output, it is likely that you won’t be exposed to any naturally curated traffic. There are a number of different ways to boost your SEO, from content marketing to using successful backlinks, and these are broken down into onsite and offsite SEO strategies.
On-site vs. Off-site SEO
On-site SEO involves methods such as optimizing your site to include any keywords that are most likely to be searched by a potential customer. These keywords need to be used effectively across your site pages, including titles and subtitles, tags, and within the main body of content text. The reason why this is so important is that the internet is an endless library of data, and search engines can only extract a small amount of information per website in order to analyze which sites most closely match the search of an individual; this information is then used to create a primary results list. Therefore, it is crucial to have a clear understanding of which keywords are most relevant to your business and to find ways to incorporate them naturally into your website.
If your website includes a very limited amount of information, this type of on-site optimization is a very short term solution to boosting your search engine indexing. This is because once your on-site information is optimized, there is very little you can do except for updating your keywords as and when is necessary. However, content marketing strategies, such as the incorporation of a blog into your website, are particularly useful for continually boosting your SEO ranking: the more content that you can include in your website, the more keywords you will be able to include within the text. Employing SEO content writing services, in particular, is useful for ensuring that you are using the most effective on-site methods to boost your search engine rankings.
Alternatively, off-site SEO approaches also provide a proactive form of search engine optimization, which you may want to consider introducing into your marketing strategy. Not only do search engines look for keywords and phrases to identify your website’s content and relevance, but they also look for how your website is interlinked with other highly-ranked resources. These ties between different websites can be formed through shared connections, known as backlinks.
What are backlinks?
Backlinks are, simply put, hyperlinks that connect back to your website from other pages. For example, if a blogger were to link your company’s website in a product review, it would go some way towards increasing your page’s rank within search engine results. Many people ask “How many backlinks do I need to rank highly in search engine results pages?”, but in truth backlinks depend more on quality than quantity for success; the more reputable a website is that links back to your business, the higher search engines are likely to boost your ranking.
In a lot of ways, backlinks work like reviews: the more positive reviews you get from offsite referrers, the more likely Google is to consider your website a useful resource, and the higher your ranking will become. Ideally, you’ll want to receive new backlinks monthly, or at least regularly, so that search engines are aware that your content is still relevant. While there is no set limit on how many backlinks from one website you can utilize, it is best to spread backlinks across a wide variety of influential webpages for your backlinks to bring you a more competitive edge.
Finding competitive backlinks
Earning appropriate and successful backlinks is an essential part of off-site SEO, and some backlinks hold more weight than others. In general, there are considered to be two categories of backlinks: ‘do follow’ and ‘no follow.’ Followed backlinks from high-authority websites are the most desirable backlinks, as these suggest a vote of confidence from a well-respected site that bolsters the authority of your website and content. These types of links are also more likely to be clicked on, meaning that people will use the hyperlink to be taken to your website page, which is the most desirable outcome for boosting website traffic. However, even if you only earn a no-follow link from a respected site, just having this mention can still be of benefit to your website and your SERP (search engine results pages) ranking.
It is important to be aware that while most backlinks will have a positive impact on your website to some degree, there are some extremely undesirable backlinks that could actually decrease your SERP ranking or leave you blacklisted by search engines altogether. Sites that Google, and other search engines, believe to be low quality or rooted in spam are often penalized, and any association that you have with these sites could also end up with your site being penalized as well.
Depending on what connections you have, it can difficult to find other respectable and trustworthy websites to include backlinks to your business, which is why it can be useful to use a link building service. By outsourcing this task to people who have undergone backlink training and are skilled in networking with bloggers and website owners, you will be more likely to connect with influential websites that are ranked highly by search engines, helping to boost your website visibility.
Types of backlinks
The types of backlinks that are favored by search engines change all the time, so it is essential to be aware of the most effective link methods. In the past, having your business listed in an off-site directory was one of the most effective SEO methods preferred by searched engines such as Google. However, when these types of directories started being exploited for higher SERP ratings, Google changed its algorithm to reduce the approval placed on these types of methods. You may find it useful to carry out backlink analysis to ensure that your website is only associated high-quality backlinks, as well as to keep track of all associated websites so that you don’t find yourself asking “How many links do I have?”
Unrequested editorial links
Overall, links given merely out of respect for your website and content without any other motivation are the most desirable to obtain; an editorial link included under the discretion of a website owner is earnt through nothing more than the perceived authority of your website, which is why these links are the most well-respected in terms of both search engine optimization, and consumer trust. However, in order to gain these links, you need to give website owners a reason to want to associate with you and your business. More than anything, this type of link relies on you creating good quality, well sought-after content that appeals to a wider audience.
Outreach link building
As an alternative option to waiting for your content to be discovered by a third party, one of the most common link building practices is to create backlinks manually by reaching out to website owners and bloggers and asking them to link back to your website or content. You will need to give them some kind of incentive to want to link back to your website, whether that means creating working partnership with them or just appealing to their interests by producing high-quality content that they can benefit from being associated with. As finding bloggers to work alongside can be difficult, you can seek the help of a blogger outreach agency who can assist you by introducing your brand to a wider variety of audiences, and put backlinks in place from high-authority websites.
These types of links are still widely used, but can sometimes be penalized by search engines. A non-editorial link tends to hold less weight for SEO, as they are more freely given and not monitored under the discretion of a respected site owner. For example, links included in unmoderated blog comments, unfiltered directories, and advertorials are all considered to be ‘black-hat’ techniques that are penalized by Google and other search engines.
Black-hat and white-hat techniques
In order to keep your SERP rating high, it is important only to employ SEO techniques that comply with search engine guidelines. This is because search engine algorithms are all created with the ability to recognize and flag problematic SEO techniques, or illegitimate links that they consider to be spam.
If you are found to be using too many black-hat techniques, it could lead to you becoming delisted by a search engine altogether, so it is important to avoid these methods at all costs. For your reference, black-hat techniques include:
- The use of unrelated keywords: Keywords that are just placed within a website for the sake of driving in traffic are often flagged by Google, due to their misleading nature.
- Overuse of keywords: When keywords are placed within a text unnaturally, search engines may flag this, even if the keywords are relevant to your business.
- Hidden text: Hidden text is a common black-hat technique where small or invisible writing is used to add in extra un-related links or stuff keywords into a body of text in an effort to boost its ranking.
White-hat techniques are much more effective in the long term, as they won’t be flagged by search engine algorithms as not meeting the guidelines. In essence, sticking to the guidelines simply means creating relevant and interesting content, using transparent links with relevant anchor texts, and using legitimate links between your site and others.
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