Link building remains one of the most important and most used online marketing strategies. Almost all digital marketing strategies involve the process of using link building in some form or another. For experienced marketers, this is a given. But for newbies, this process might require some explaining. Namely, how does link building (or its common name backlinks) help with search engine optimization?
Before we get to that, let’s break down the whole process of link building.
The Definition of Link Building
In the most basic terms, link building is getting other websites to link back to your website. This drives traffic to your site and increases your domain authority. The more links you have going to your page, the stronger your website will be, the better it will rank on Google.
If you’re wondering why you need to build links, Google is the answer. As the most used search engine on the planet, it controls what viewers see when searching for specific keywords. As such, it wants to provide viewers with the best information possible, which it gauges by using its algorithm.
Google’s algorithm detects backlinks as a signal that your site is a quality resource worthy of citation. Therefore, sites with more links tend to earn higher SEO rankings.
In simple terms, Google will rank respective websites based on the popularity of the links. But there is more to it than just spamming links to your site.
How Does Link Building Boost SEO?
While the above explanation gives a thorough understanding of why link building is essential, it’s elementary. Several key factors will impact Google’s review of your links, either negatively or positively. These include:
The trust and authority of the linking pages or websites
Where you’re linking from has a huge impact on your SEO. If you’re linking from Forbes, that’s an established site with plenty of authority and recognition. If you’re linking from a random blog in China, not so much.
The SEO of the respective links
How you optimize your backlink is just as important. In the example of a guest blog, if you were to keyword stuff it and then upload multiple links to it, it will make the SEO useless.
The anchor text of the links
Google uses anchor text to help understand the link’s context and, therefore, contribute a ranking to it. Your anchor text must be professional and worthwhile, so it has a positive impact on the link.
These factors though, are just a part of the whole process. Essentially, you have to engage in natural link building, which means earning links rather than buying them outright or getting them through sneaky tactics (also known as black-hat SEO).
Engaging in natural link building is a time-consuming and challenging process. Take, for example, linking a guest blog from Forbes. It will have a greater impact on your rankings as it comes from a quality site, but it’s harder to obtain than other lesser-known websites.
Although that doesn’t mean that you should ignore link building strategies. There are plenty of options that you can use that will develop your organic rankings without violating Google guidelines.
Simple Link Building Strategies that You can Use
1- Guest Blogging
Perhaps one of the most commonly used and effectual link building available. The aim is simple: create compelling, unique, high-quality content that can be posted on powerful, authoritative websites (Wall Street Journal, Forbes, University of Harvard etc). You’ll receive a huge boost for your SEO and link from a trustworthy source that will enhance your website’s reputation.
2- Directories & Industry Pages
Every industry has its niche directory. So why not use it by creating a profile and linking your page to it? Mention the keywords a few times in your bio (as this will help the SEO side of things) and place your link to your homepage. The more directories you have bios on, the better your link building reach.
3- Reviews & Mentions
Put your product, service, or site in front of influencers in your industry. Just simple mentions on popular bloggers or social media influencers pages or posts can go a long way. Just don’t make it too spamming or cheap.
4- Social Media Profiles
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram – these sites have a powerful domain authority that can be used for your link building. Create profiles on all these platforms and link back to your homepage. Then maximize these platforms by posting regularly and linking back to your website in some way, such as through landing pages or blog posts.
5- Google My Business
If you Google is making you build links, why not get a link right from them? Google My Business is their cow, and you can milk them for its worth by creating, optimizing and building links right from their platform.
6- Internal Link Building
A method you have total control over. You can decipher what you can achieve with your internal link and build a strong authority to specific pages on your website. It’s simple to execute and to show you, and we’ll use this example of an injury lawyer in Boston:
- Use specific keywords for specific pages – make “injury lawyer in Boston” the homepage’s standout keyword.
- Assign keywords to content – strategically place the keywords (and its variations) within the homepage and other pages.
- Hyperlink the keywords to the homepage – hyperlink the keywords to the homepage to build authority to the keywords and the homepage.
It’s so simple, anyone can do it.
Take Your Time – The Results Will Come
Link building, like all SEO tactics, takes time for them to bear fruit. You shouldn’t expect results within a few days or weeks. It can take a few weeks or even a few months. Just be patient and develop links to powerful sites that can really boost your SEO.
Avoid shortcuts like buying links against Google’s guidelines and be devastating for your SEO. Focus on quality over quantity, and it will pay off in the long run.