Not all backlinks are created equal. Use this article as a guide to becoming the ultimate backlink builder and send your business to the top.
If you've been assuming that all backlinks give you the same benefits, this article is for you. Not all backlinks are created equal, and if you're not getting the right backlinks, you may actually be damaging your business.
Back in the day, it was easy to be a successful backlink builder. You could write a bunch of random articles, post them on an article submission site, and rest easy knowing you had a new external link aimed at your website.
This is no longer the case. Google has released a series of updates, penalizing sites that engage in shoddy link building strategies. Sure, the right links can help you grow your brand, revenue, and Google rankings. But the wrong ones can give you a big fat penalty, which can be difficult to recover from.
Read on to learn how you can become the ultimate backlink builder and grow your business this year.
What You Need to Know to be a Top Backlink Builder
Building backlinks used to be easy. Many people used private blog networks to achieve higher page rankings. And then Google released the PBN deindexing update, and websites that had used that technique ended up tanking in the search results.
The truth is, there are no longer any corner-cutting techniques available for link building. Instead, you need to have a dedicated backlink strategy and build your links the right way.
Effective link building is now all about popularity and trust. Which means if you want to be a successful backlink builder, you need a scalable, strategic link building strategy.
Developing a Link Building Strategy That Works
In order to become a pro backlink builder, you need to first have a thorough understanding of what Google wants.
Google's aim is to organize all of the information in the world, making it both useful and accessible.
If you're aiming to build a solid link profile without getting penalized, you need to work closely with Googles goals.
That means providing unique, high-quality, helpful content.
Check Your Content
First, consider whether your content is well-organized. When people visit your site, they shouldn't be wondering what they should do next. Instead, your site should be intuitive and easy to navigate.
Next, it's time to examine your content. If you're not publishing useful information, other sites won't want to link to you. They want to send their readers to information that will make their lives better, which is why you need to have a strong content marketing strategy.
Your content strategy is the difference between an SEO campaign that gets great results, and one that falls flat.
It doesn't matter how well-optimized your site is, or how many backlinks you get. Without excellent content, those backlinks are unlikely to come from trusted, high-authority websites.
Here are some tips for your content creation:
Know your reader: Develop content for the people reading it
Make it useful: Answer questions, solve problems
Ensure it's unique: Avoid regurgitating the same old blog posts- bring a different angle or approach
Include a CTA: Encourage readers to share your content, link to it, or read another blog post
One of the reasons why so many people find link building difficult is because they're not producing shareable content.
If you want to be a pro backlink builder, you need quality content that people will naturally link to. A single great blog post can help you get many high-quality backlinks.
Consider Link Quality
High-quality backlinks are much more trustworthy and relevant compared to traditional links.
If your website is about horseback riding, and your latest link is from an article directory, Google won't consider it to be relevant to your site.
But if that link is from a site related to horseback riding, like a tack store, horse food company, or a horse-related discussion board, your rankings will improve. Plus, your site will be valuable and relevant to your visitors.
Before you consider a website for a backlink, it's important to know its domain authority. There are a number of websites that can show you these statistics, or you can use the Moz Bar, which shows you this information within the search results.
You should also consider your trust flow. This metric is from Majestic and looks specifically at the quality of the backlinks a site has. The higher this number, the better. Choose backlinks from websites that have a high trust flow, and your SEO rankings are guaranteed to improve.
Once you've produced a piece of content that you're proud of, it's time to get those backlinks.
First, consider the sites that are linking to your competitors. Also, look into websites that may not yet be linking to your competitors, but probably will in the future.
Most websites and blogs will have a contact page, so you can reach out to their owners via email.
Here's how you can do this well:
Know who you're emailing
Blog and website owners get many emails every week. And plenty of them will start with "To Whom it May Concern". Never do this.
A study from Experian found that personalized emails are 29% more likely to be opened. They also have a 41% higher click through rates compared to emails that have no personalization.
If you're aiming to form a relationship with another blogger (and gain a valuable backlink) the least you can do is know who you're emailing.
Remember: You're asking them for a favor.
A simple "Hey Sally", or "Hi John" is ideal.
Give Them Something
You want access to their audience, you want a backlink, you'd like a tweet. But what do they get out of it?
If you want to be a great backlink builder, you need to give people value.
Otherwise, you're just asking them to do things for you. And you're going to have a very low success rate.
If you've created a truly outstanding and unique piece of content, key influences may appreciate being given a heads up.
But you need to define what makes your content so great and clearly articulate it within your email. Don't just send them a link- pique their interest and encourage them to read your content.
Let's face it, it's pretty hard to resist looking at a blog post if you know that either you or your business are featured.
You can use:
Feedback about what they've taught you
A quote from their talk, podcast, or article
A positive experience you had with their company, service, or product
If they look good, they're going to want to share it with their audience.
Use Social Proof
Can you prove that you're not the only one who thinks your content is awesome? You can use social media to show that other people love your blog post or article.
Was it tweeted by someone famous?
Did it get hundreds of comments?
Was it upvoted by tons of people on Reddit?
Any of the above can help your email stand out, and make it more likely you'll get a backlink.
Have a Good Excuse
There are a few common reasons that people use when they're emailing for backlinks.
But one of the most common is the "I wrote a similar one." When you email someone who has published a post and tell them that you've written something similar, it shows you haven't studied the person you're emailing.
You may be interested in a different opinion on this topic
You didn't mention this one important point
You linked to this content, but I have a much better resource on this subject
Ask for the Link
Of course, being a great backlink builder is about actually asking for links. But you need to do this well.
Avoid just asking for a backlink. This is a good way to end up in their spam folder.
Instead, ask for an opinion, and suggest they mention your content to their followers if they like it.
You've created a great, personalized email, and sent it. But for some reason, you haven't yet followed up.
We're all busy. And often, people read an email with the intention of replying but forget to. Even the best backlink builder has to deal with unanswered emails.
Solve this problem with a short, polite email to follow up. You'll be surprised by how many backlinks you get.
All you need is a sentence or two. Mention that you're following up, know they're short on time, but would love to hear back.
Find Broken Links
If you notice that a resource from your niche has moved to a new URL or gone out of business, you can replace them.
If you find a site with a broken link, and you have relevant content that the site owner can use instead, reach out to them. It's rare that they would ignore the broken link, and they're likely to add your link instead.
Guest blogging has been a popular way to get backlinks for a long time. And it's unlikely to go out of fashion anytime soon.
When you're hoping to write a guest blog, the same rules as above apply. Avoid links from low authority sites. Do your homework, and find sites that will give you high-quality links in return for your post.
Conduct an Interview
People love reading interviews from thought leaders in any industry. And many people will be flattered and happy to do an interview with you.
Once the interview is completed, ask them to link to your website. Repeat this a few times with other thought leaders, and you'll soon have access to a wide audience.
Ready to become a ninja backlink builder? If you'd like help with your next project, get in touch today to learn how we can grow your brand.