You may be new to the web-osphere and link building-osphere or an oldie, but one thing is certain: you need to build links and continually improve on them. This post introduces you to link building, aka, internet networking. It works pretty much the way offline networking works – by putting yourself out there. It is that internet muscle you must continue to exert to keep your website in good shape. Read on to learn more about link building and effective link building strategies.
What Is Link Building?
Link Building is the process of attracting other blogs and websites to your own website for your search engine rankings to improve. Search engines such as Google, Bing, DuckDuckGo & Yahoo are constantly crawling the internet searching for links between your web page content and other web pages in order to verify the validity of your content and also decide where your page ranks in their search results.
If your blog or website receives and contains lots of authoritative links, then not only are you considered popular, you are considered valid too. Search engines constantly evolve their algorithm to differentiate spam links from authentic ones. This goes a long way to support the fact that inbound marketing and valuable content are more important than ever. This is a very important area and you would not want to be left behind.
Although important, link building is not the be all end all in terms of ranking higher. Google looks at over 200 ranking factors in order to determine what content is best.
Why Is Link Building Important?
Link building is important because it is a major factor in how Google ranks web pages. As said earlier, link building is basically the process of getting other websites to link back to your own website and as such you will need certain link building strategies to get external websites to link to yours. Common but effective strategies include:
Content creation and promotion
Create compelling and high-quality content which people will naturally be itching to make reference to and tell people about. High quality content will also potentially guarantee return users. Learn more about creating high quality content in this post.
Reviews and mentions
Expose your work such that influencers, top bloggers in your field and people with a large number of followings would see. Get reviews and shout outs from the “Who’s Who” in your niche. The next-best thing would be to have your peers in the field mention you in their content or reviews.
Links from friends and partners
Get your peers in the field to link back to you. This is best following a rave review of you and your site. If you have ties with the “Who’s Who” in your field, even better!
Very importantly, note that relevance matters and links from sites that are in the same niche as your site will be more useful and valuable than links from random and unrelated sites.
Naturally, building a lot of links could be time consuming and most times, frustrating. However, be patient and always remember that going about this the easy way such as buying links are largely against the guidelines put down by most search engine providers, and can be detrimental to your Search Engine Optimization. You do not want to take chances. But, good news! There is actually an easy, underrated method of building links to the pages you want to improve search engine ranks for. This method is called internal link building and it is a method you can have total dominion over.
What Factors Should I Consider To Get My Website To Rank Higher?
If you want your website to start ranking higher, deploy some of these strategies…
When it comes to ranking, search engines usually take into account the actual text a linking page uses to talk about your content so, be specific with your choice of words. So, what is an Anchor Text?
An Anchor Text is the clickable text in a hyperlink. It is also known as the link label or the link title. The words contained here assist in the determination of the rankings that the page will receive by search engines such as Yahoo, Bing or Google. Links which don’t have anchor texts are usually referred to as URL’s. Different browsers display anchor texts differently and the appropriate use of anchor text helps the pages liked to rank for those keywords in search engines.
Some examples of anchor text include:
Targeted anchor text
Link builders who specialize in building links to a website often control the anchor texts from the links they build from other websites. These anchor texts are targeted – the keyword in the anchor text will match the targeted keyword of the page an SEO is trying to rank on.
Backlink anchor text
A backlink is a link from another website. A backlink anchor text is an anchor text used by other websites linking to your own website. The anchor text of these backlinks help search engines determine the most relevant keywords a webpage should rank for.
One-Way anchor text backlinks
If website “A” links to website “B” with an anchor text backlink and website B does not link back to website A, then you have a one-way anchor text backlink. One-way anchor text backlinks are sought out by SEO’s because it is believed that the more one-way anchor text backlinks a webpage has from websites with highly ranked pages, the better the former will rank on search engines.
Excessive anchor text
Just like keyword stuffing, you can have too much anchor text on a given page. Too many keywords on a page linking to too many other pages, or all to the same page but with different anchor texts, leads to a case of excessive anchor text. The excessive use of anchor texts within your website attracts penalties from Google because it is considered an unauthentic and user-unfriendly practice.
Anchor text distribution
Particular keywords will have a higher share of a page’s overall anchor text distribution because link builders are actively building links to their websites with targeted anchor text.
Spam-like anchor text
A spam anchor text is a link with an anchor text that has no relationship whatsoever with the page it exists on or the page it is linking to. These kinds of anchor texts can be used to harm or take down a competitor’s website through negative SEO and Google bombing.
Quality Of The Linking Page
The quality of the page sending the link is also taken into consideration; links from quality pages count more when it comes to boosting rankings.
Page The Link Is Aimed At
Most individuals usually experience difficulties in achieving high rankings due to the fact that it is difficult for them to generate their own link equity. This is majorly due to the fact that when people talk about your site, they will link to the home page, and not to specific pages.
How Can I Successfully Achieve Internal Link Building?
Step 1: Keyword research for link building
First, determine the relevant keywords for your content. A keyword is a phrase used when linking to your site’s internal pages or pages from other websites. A comprehensive way of doing so will by to use a keyword research tool to generate a variety of suggested popular and relevant keywords. The power of keywords in link building remains evident in today’s search marketing. They are often used in different ways and for different purposes in the link building process. With the right set of keywords, you will be able to understand the behavior of your target audience, tap into their interests through existing content assets, and finally, convert them either as customers or brand followers. Also, during keyword research, it is important to understand the intent of your searchers. Search internet is categorized mainly as informational, navigational, commercial, and transactional investigation.
This contains the details about what the searcher is looking for and the details concerning the topic (e.g. perks of being a vegetarian).
This contains the details of the brand (e.g. Apple products).
This involves specific parameters for researching an offering
This involves the researcher being ready to purchase the product (e.g. buy a microwave).
After determining the category of your keywords, match them to your site’s internal pages. For instance, informational keywords can be your topic ideas for your blog content, say blog posts. Navigational keywords could be used as content ideas for FAQs, pages and review pages of your products because the researchers using those keywords are already familiar with your brand. Commercial investigation keywords are appropriate to use for product comparison pages. For instance, the advantages of your products over rival ones. And lastly, Transactional keywords can be your target phrases for your landing pages. Indeed, understanding the value of keywords can help you identify your customers’ needs, focus on the value proposition of your brand and help you acquire high-end links for your website.
Step 2: Assign keywords to content
Group keywords strategically
Group strategically and create a search-friendly information architecture. Think of your website as an army of pages fighting the competition for rankings in natural search. You would not have every fighter in an army attack the same target in the same way. Each would have a different target or different ways of approaching the target. The keyword map is nothing more than a tool to ensure that you are deploying your valuable keyword research data to your army of pages optimally.
Target keywords with surgical precision
Assign a unique keyword target for each page on your site to ensure that all the valuable targets are covered.
Crawl your site
Use a tool that mimics search-engine-crawler behavior. This also collects page information.
Step 3: Assign keywords to pages
Assign keywords to pages based on the keyword research you have already done. For every page, choose the single, most highly searched and relevant keyword to list in your “primary keyword” field. Ensure that the keywords are closely related when you are assigning keywords to support the primary keyword.
Step 4: Link pages using anchor text
Link pages using targeted anchor text- Lastly, apply your keyword research to intelligent inter-linking.
Creating Linkable High Quality Content
Generally, high-quality content has:
- Well-researched and accurate information
- Extremely valuable material designed for your target audience
- Impeccably-written copy
- Supplemental images, graphs, videos or infographics
- The most complete and up-to-date information at the time of publishing
Conduct in-depth research
Cite specific sources for every claim made throughout the article. This inspires confidence in the reader that the content is well-researched, and therefore, reliable. This will result in your content being bookmarked, revisited, referenced or linked back to. Don’t we all just want this?
This is a powerful way to establish your credibility. In addition to making your content higher quality by adding in expert opinion, you have also added influencers to the article who further establish your credibility. “Experts” are known as the people who have authority in a given industry. When your readers see that your claims are backed up by expert opinion, they are more likely to trust your articles and also more likely to associate you with that expert.
Look for opportunities throughout your content to mention specific resources. This can also be a reciprocal strategy where you mention your peers on your webpage, while they mention you on theirs. Also, be specific while mentioning resources. Consider these scenarios:
A: “There are lots of SEO experts” and “XYZ is a seasoned SEO specialist”
B: “There are millions of great guides to SEO” and “For beginner’s guides to SEO, check out BCD and PQR”
In both A and B, the first statements are not much help to the reader as they still have to sift through a lot of information to find what they need. On the other hand, the second statements point the reader in a specific direction on where to find more information. If you link to these resources, they can click those links to find further information, all the while appreciating how helpful your page is!
Learn more about how to develop high-quality content that will distinguish your content from the rest.
How Can You Build Links To Your Linkable High Quality Content?
Play the numbers game. The number of social shares, the number of votes, and comments you receive on your content all play a role in convincing people that your piece is popular and link worthy. This is why the second after you publish your content, you need to start building up these numbers. Share it on your social media platforms. The key is to build your numbers evenly across all networks. Get your likes, shares, reaction buttons and votes up. Best of all, get comments. They’re the ultimate evidence of engaging content. And these days, the internet is the comments section. If you send out a well-written email announcement of your post, you will begin to get those views and comments.
Expose your content. The more people that you reach, the greater number of links you are likely to get from them. “But how?” you ask. Sharing on social media is an obvious one. However, the fastest way to get this exposure beyond just sharing on your social media is through social media advertising. After this step, you reach out directly to the people who are most likely to link to your content. These will typically be bloggers. Also be on the lookout for people who do roundups by email. Subscribers of some emails might have blogs of their own and might link to yours.
Finally, look for ways to answer questions with links to your content. This will not always create SEO, but it will allow you gain more exposure for your content in a helpful way. Remember, more exposure has the potential to lead to more links.
Link building is internet networking. You have to be at it constantly, improving, and making it great quality. Once you know what you want and especially how to go about it, there is no stopping you. Link building and getting your webpage to rank higher could be pretty tasking but with the appropriate amount of time and dedication, you will be reaping the fruits of your labor very happily.
Have you tried any of this? How have they helped your website? Sound off in the comments!