Link Building Guide: A Definitive Campaign For SEO Success
Link building plays a pivotal role in ranking your website higher in search engines. And to achieve that, it is certainly not very difficult if you follow everything that needs to be followed religiously. This link building guide will help you chalk out your link building strategy.
Disclaimer: This note is just to give you heads up that this post is a little longer than articles you might have read. So be patient and read through this article.
When you are building links, it is always advisable not to constantly check whether you are getting any links back to your site. It is a sheer waste of time. Instead, spend that much time in building links. Because it gets difficult to keep working on link building campaign when you can’t measure the results immediately. That’s where taking stock of progress you are making with your link building campaign comes in. I have listed all the things in this link building guide that you will need.
In the earlier days, it was pretty easy to find sites that are linking back to your website by running a simple search query—link: yoursite.com, but that doesn’t work anymore as Google has stopped showing sites that link back to your site or have reduced the number of sites that are pointing back at your website.
You must be wondering, “Why is that so?”
It is because Google doesn’t want you to know the number of sites that are linking back to your site for reasons that are unknown to me as well. Therefore, link building and tracking as to how many links and from where these links are being linked to your site is an important activity that a blogger or business owner needs to do once in a while. But don’t to do too often.
Link Building Guide: Basics of Link Building
Even before we talk about how link building activity is carried out, it is necessary that we understand the basics. It won’t be unfair to say that link building is an art and the SEO’s job is to be an artist. It is obviously important to know how many ways you can build links. So I have categorized the link building activity into four major types.
Natural Link Building: People who read your blog post or an article link back to your site because they like what you write about. Natural link building is the best way to get backlinks directed to your site. You don’t have to do anything here, except writing good and in-depth content, which is worthy to be shared across different platforms.
Outreach Link Building: You outreach to like-minded bloggers and professionals requesting for links, submitting articles on directories, or hiring a back linking agency to do the job.
When you outreach to bloggers, it is your job to ensure that you explain them properly as to why link building is beneficial and how it can benefit both of you. A few of the commonly used tactics include filling out forms for submissions, writing emails to the bloggers who have more subscribers than you, and much more can add up to your link building campaign.
Resource Page Link Building: In resource page link building, it is important that you pay attention to page authority. The other thing is to see where these links are linked out whether they are linked out to pages filled with quality content or pages with commercials.
Unlike other pages, resources pages are meant for linking out to different resourceful sites. So you don’t have to do a lot of email writing to persuade. It is because the more resources they have on their site, the better it is for them. People here would ask you for a suggestion: if you know of a similar site you may want to include, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. So how do you go about searching for resource page links in your niche where you can include your link.
You simply type the following formula and you will find resource pages in your niche.
Once you have keyed in the above formula and hit the search button, you will see a million plus websites. You just have to look for the sites that end with links. That is where you will propose a link proposition and capitalise on it.
Self-created Link Building: One of the common ways to self-created links is to search for blogs that are popular amongst users and reaching out to them with a proposition of writing a guest article on a topic of their niche. Other ways include: guest book signings, blog comments, and user profiles.
The above link building activity doesn’t generate too many links and the links that you receive are of lower value, but these links will still impact the number of visitors that come to your sites. So don’t ignore this option completely. Since Google has started penalising sites with such links, it is better to go ahead with this option very very carefully.
Since Google has started penalising sites with such links, it is better to go ahead with this option very very carefully.
To get you started and provide you more resources to ensure that you are through with your link building campaign, I have listed a few reliable and ‘must follow’ resources.
- Contextual Link Building
- How to Promote a Website Through Link Building in 10 Easy Ways
- A Model for Link Building: Beyond “Great Content”
Once you know what is link building and the type of link building campaigns, it is extremely important to know how you carry out this important task, which has the power to make or break your website.
Here are a few pointers that will help you along the way.
Building Quality Links
When there were no other alternatives to promote content, link building was a primary task of the bloggers and SEOs. And Google wasn’t the only search engine to count links as votes, but it began to heavily rely on link analysis to factor websites with more backlinks.
Link building in earlier days was a major off-page optimization activity, which became quite popular until Goggle and many other search engines brought in an array of algorithms to analyse the data. Despite these tools, link building continued to reign the search engines and was considered the most important external signal for search engines.
So how do you build quality links? And the simple answer to this question is to write quality, in-depth, and resourceful content.
Search engines count all the links that are directed to your website, except the links received through other forbidden methods like form submission.
Links of better quality get more weight. So what is a quality link? But backlinks that you receive from sites that are popular and are known for the quality content are considered better links that you should aim to get. Beside, backlinks that you get from similar niche sites also count more.
Link Text/Anchor Text
Sites like Google and Amazon have millions of links pointing at them. Yet these sites may not rank for a keyword like “health”, because they rank for something else.
Anchor texts are words within a link that describe another website. Someone pointing at you for a keyword like PPC clearly means that you are an expert and know quite a lot about PPC that anyone can benefit. Sites that link out to you may any word depending on their write-up and the topic they are writing about.
Number of Links
Everyone who has been in blogging for some time knows very well that getting more links can help you add up to your SEO success, more so if you are getting more links from different sites.
Link Buidling Guide: Tips and Tricks
Before we dive into another topic, let’s quickly go through these “must follow” tips that will get you started on your link building campaign.
Tip 1: Don’t expect to get a 100 % information correct from these sites on the links that are linking back to your website. I have listed a few link tracking sites for your reference so that you can choose the one that best suits you.
Tip 2: Don’t try to compare data from all these sites, you will be hugely disappointed because these sites won’t measure the backlinks that you have pointing to your site the same way. Each tool will use its own algorithm and method to track backlinks. Choose one wisely.
Tip 3: Keeping eye on metrics is okay, but don’t do it too often. Instead, try checking once in two weeks or a month. You can instead spend that much effort in link building and increase the chance of getting more links with every passing day.
Tip 4: Is checking your competitors’ backlinks all right? I would encourage you to do that once in a while as it will tell you how many backlinks they have and what are their sources from where they receive these backlinks. Identify the common posts and topics your competitors share and if they are getting links back to their site. Based on your research, you can consider compiling them together and write to them and ask if they can link back to your site.
Tips 5: Sites that we use to track backlinks offer a subscription plan. Unless you are running a business or an agency, don’t get into subscribing these at all. But you are a consulting firm and want to show your clients where these backlinks are coming and how these are ranked in search engines, you should definitely consider this.
If you follow these tips religiously, you will definitely make a better decision.
Link Building Guide: Tools
Here are a few tools that can help you track backlinks.
LinkDiagnosis is a free tool for inspecting backlinks that are pointing to your site. It is important that you open LinkDaignosis with Firefox browser. And to do this, you will have to install a plugin for Firefox. Once you are on the landing page of LinkDaignosis, it will prompt you to add a plugin.
Once you have keyed in your site’s name, the tool will fetch all the data related to links you have received. As said earlier, these tools don’t show all the backlinks that you have pointing to your site. However, the tool will give you a good insight into a number of links you might have received.
You can check the overview of backlinks, along with the anchor texts used, the Page Rank of the page linking back to your sites, and so on. Moreover, you can also see the page from where the link was included. This will help you see the quality of the sites that are linking back to your site.
This is another easy-to-use tool, which is a subscription-based tool. However, this tool also allows you to use their free version. Unlike other tools, this tool will prompt you to sign in before you can use it. Once you have signed in and have created your account (you can login in using your existing Facebook or Gmail account), you are all set to explore, but before that you need to use Site Explorer and key in your domain name to see what shows up.
A few of these tools allow you to visit any specific page on a site and see where the backlinks are coming from for that specific page. I used moneysavingexpert.com as I have been following this website for quite some time.
Here is what showed up.
The indicator on the site shows that there is a significant drop in backlinks. One of the reasons for this vertical fall could be that the site had too many low-quality backlinks and that these were removed eventually.
If you scroll down a little bit, you will see the number of phrases used on this site.
Besides, this tool will also show you the number of dofollow and nofollow sites linked out to your site.
If you desire to see who is linking to your site or to your competitor’s site, you will have to subscribe. I just looked at the subscription plans and they are pretty expensive. So decide for yourself if you want to go the subscription plan.
Google Webmaster is another tool that allows you to get data related to your site, including backlinks, dofollow, nofollow, and many other details. Unlike other tools, this tool does not allow you to enter any other site or your competitor’s site because you have to verify your account. As I have mentioned earlier, do not check your backlinks too often because that is a waste of time.
I would rather suggest you do it once in a month. After a month’s interval, you can see the number of backlinks increased on your site. It would be so exciting to see so many backlinks linked out to your site, isn’t it?
So always try to ensure that you spend as much time as you can on link building activity. There are many tools that you can use to see data related to your site. I would like to know what strategies you use to build backlinks. So please share your thoughts. I would like to know what strategies you use to build backlinks. So please share your thoughts.