What is Link Building?
Not an easy task
As any link builder will tell you, link building isn’t the easiest of jobs, nor is it the quickest. Finding links that will add real value to a site can be a very slow process, one that requires a lot of time and patience.
If we really wanted to we could talk about link building for hours, it’s a field that has many aspects to it, many of which are often the topic of conversation in many online marketing blogs and forums.
When you sit down and start deciding your link building strategy you will quickly realise that there is actually a real lack of good quality link opportunities, so there is bound to be a huge amount of competition for those few great ones, so the key thing to remember before you start is perseverance!
There are of course a multitude of angles from which you can tackle link building and not all of them are honest, but I think it best to leave the discussion of those less honest tricks for another blog.
- Blog posts are a great way of both building internal links and attracting outside links. If you produce good quality posts that contain interesting and helpful information, the chance of people naturally linking back to your site is increased, meaning great links! This method does take time and a little creativity but is definitely worthwhile and not just link building wise.
- Guest blogging is another great way of getting good quality links; it involves having content that you have created posted onto other sites. As you are able to choose the sites, you are able to ensure that your material is posted on to good authority sites that will lead to high value links. Although this can be a great link building tactic, it is not an easy one and if you don’t have the ability to create good posts, bloggers are unlikely to allow you to post on their sites.
- Resource pages are sites that contain products or services specific to certain fields. If you can find relevant resource pages, these can provide good link opportunities which shouldn’t be missed, just so long as you ensure that the site is relevant and contains good links to useful sites. Again getting links on these sites isn’t easy but with plenty of effort and patience it is achievable.
- Competitor research is a key part of link building; it involves analysing your competitor’s links and attempting to get the same ones, personally I use open site explorer from Moz for this. Of course you have to spend time identifying the good quality links and steering clear of the bad ones, and it won’t always be possible to get the same links, but it would be foolish not to spend time carrying out this strategy.
- IfPeople you know have websitesask them for a link! This is by far the easiest form of link building so make sure you take advantage of any contacts you have, but of course be sure that they are trusted and quality sites.
- Internal linking is a strategy that is easily forgotten or not counted as link building; don’t overlook it! It not only helps with your sites link profile, but also ensures that all pages on your site get value which can only be a good thing. Internal links alone are not going to make a dramatic difference, but they are definitely worthwhile.
- Linking out to other sites can be a very good strategy but it is not guaranteed to work. If you occasionally create links on your page to other quality sites you are more likely to build relationships and thus increase your chances of getting links from those sites in return. Even if you add these links and get none in return, improving relationships with others can never be harmful!
- Broken link building is a very popular form of link building which involves finding links on websites that no longer work and suggesting a link to your site as a replacement. The topic of broken link building is an extensive one that we will perhaps save and go in to detail on another time, but it is a great reward for doing something helpful and often it doesn’t take too long to actually get your link if the webmaster is willing.
These are just a handful of the most effective link building strategies, but as I have already said in this post, good link opportunities are not easy to come by so no matter how well you execute your strategies, don’t expect things to happen overnight (if at all in some cases).
Trust and Diversity
You need to aim for trusted websites, this means websites that have good authority because the more trusted a site is, the higher it will rank and the higher ranking a site that links to you is, the more likely it is to help you rank better.
When I talk about diversity I am talking about two things; having your links on as many different domains as possible and having your links on as many different types of domains as possible. This is good for your site for several reasons, but with regards to link building the more unique links to your site, the more trusted your site will be.
All things considered, link building is difficult, tiresome and at times disheartening, but if you have determination and dedication you can do it…if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.
The truth is that if you can get just a handful of great links to your website it can make a huge difference and all of your efforts will have been worth it!