If there’s one SEO practice more prone to sketchy, black hat temptation than the rest, it’s probably link building. Link building can be so helpful and positively boost the ranking of a website, and that’s what makes people want to automate their link building strategy to get instant results. The consequences of automated link building far outweigh the benefits, and there are plenty of ways to obtain the high quality links you need without resorting to any sketchy practices. Here are two of the most effective link building strategies you can incorporate into your link building this year to get the results you need.
1.Create Linkable Assets
We do this at HigherVisibility all the time. Creating linkable assets refers to the creative process of coming up with content ideas that will appeal to others in a way that generates links. Let’s say, for example, you’re an online boutique selling women’s clothing. For that kind of business, a linkable asset might be something like an infographic about 10 staple items to have in your closet by the time you’re 30, or a guide to finding the perfect dress for every body type. It’s a piece of content that offers utility and value to users without being too self-promoting, enough so that other websites think, “Hey, this is a great tool for my users, I’ll gladly post it on my website.” Infographics, resource guides, visual content, tutorials, and other such products can serve as linkable assets that get you the high quality links you need for healthy link profile.
2. Panels, Interviews, “Ask the Experts”
One way to get as many links as you can from a single piece of content is by incorporating multiple people in your posts. Panels, interviews, and roundup are all ways to do this. Most people are receptive to being featured in an article by someone affiliated with their industry, so getting people together isn’t all that difficult. Start by coming up with a content idea, and then putting together a group of people you could ask questions about the topic. Once you draft your content piece, put together a plan to promote the post, including having those featured in it sharing it across their platforms. Again, most people are eager and willing to share posts in which they’ve been featured.
3. Unlinked Brand Mentions
If another website is already mentioning you in an article or post, there’s no reason you shouldn’t have a link back. There are a number of tools you can use to track when your brand is mentioned, but our favorites at HigherVisibility are Google Alerts, Mention.com, and Moz. When you get an alert that your brand has been mentioned, reach out to the website or individual who posted it and turn those mentions into links. Over time, turning your brand mentions into links can add up and result in positive rankings.
4. Broken Link Building
If another website referenced your website and linked to a page that’s no longer in existence, that’s a broken link, and it’s a problem for your SEO. It also reflects poorly on whoever has the broken link posted, because users aren’t being directed to a high quality page. Start by finding your broken links using tools like Moz or Ahrefs. Once you find the broken links, reach out to the webmaster and offer them a more updated link to use instead.
5. Grab Links from Lower Quality Content
A little hustle goes a long way when it comes to your SEO link building strategy, which is exactly what snatching links from lower quality content is all about. Let’s say you’re reading a blog post about the latest and greatest SEO practices, and you click on a link that takes you to a super unhelpful 200 word blog post about the history of paid search. If you have a crazy awesome post about the exact same thing, reach out to the webmaster who linked to the lower quality link. All you have to say is, “hey, I see you linked to this page, but I have a much more thorough resource you could link to that might benefit your users more. Check it out!” Most of the time, people are apt to link to whatever will best serve their users.
6. Create Educational Resources
Much like linkable assets, educational resources have the potential to result in high quality links that attract a lot of attention. Manuals, extensive how-to guides, tutorials, or other pieces of content that teach users something rather than promote your own brand are not only well received by other websites, but are also very valuable to users. And as we all know by now, what’s valuable to users is valuable to Google. Pretend you’re a financial counselor, for example. You could write a helpful guide explaining the ins and outs of loans and how to manage money in college and grad school, and then reach out to universities about potentially listing it as a resource for their students. Not only could it possibly result in a .edu link, but you’ll also get tons of new eyes and potential clients for your business.
Also published on Medium.