There is so much misunderstanding about link-building in the marketing world. Some so-called experts force an article to have hyperlinks (sometimes leading to irrelevant links), while some content is completely devoid of any links. Who do you listen to?
Link-building is an important part of improving SEO and it continues to be so. If Google’s updates are any indication, link-building will continue to play a big role in SEO strategies. Here are vital guidelines you need to keep in mind for your link building.
1. Always Publish Content for your Readers
This point is for link-building fanatics who create and publish content to only showcase a few links (usually internal links). Do not just add a link because you find it interesting. Ask yourself, will your readers find it interesting? Does it help them in someway? And, how relevant is the content compared to what you usually publish?
2. Provide a Link your Audience needs
A good measurement of adding a link to your content is to ask, “Does my audience need it?” The link should aim to provide some useful information which your content does not explain in length.
3. Give the Publisher a Name
Ensure that each post has a person’s name as the author rather than the overall business name. This lends creditability to your blog and your reader and search engine will notice it. You should further link it up with Google Plus’ Authorship.
4. Anchor Text Relevance
The anchor text needs to be relevant. For example, learn if your content quality is good enough. The article name for the link is ‘How do you really know if your content is good quality?’ See the relevance? It helps search engines understand the hyperlink better.
5. Don’t Stick to Internal Links
In an effort to establish yourself as an expert in your field, you may choose to only have links to your website or blog. You should push your link-building to include pages from outside even if it a Wikipedia page or Search Engine Watch page. Don’t worry about diverting traffic to the other sites, if your content is good, the reader won’t go anywhere.
6. Have Quality External Links
Always review the external links you are adding to the website. Is that site well-known? Is the design fluid? Does it have a lot of spam?
These websites should be of good quality.
7. Do Local Link-Building
If you are a local business and not spread out nationally, local link-building is fantastic. Try to add local links to your page like the local municipality, shops, events, newspapers website, etc. It is a good way to indicate that you too are a local business in that area.
8. Less is More
Do not force links on to your content. Add them only when you feel it is necessary.
9. Make sure the Link is Not Broken
A broken link affects the user’s experience on your site. A link building analyser will be able to point out the broken links on your site.
10. Reach out to Relevant Online Communities
Allow your links to reach out to online forums and communities. By doing this, you increase your chances of getting referral traffic.
11. Keep Learning
The more link-building you practice, the more you will learn. Analytical tools will tell you how your content quality improves with good, useful links and degrades with poor linking. This will be the best indication of what links work and don’t work in your link-building strategy.
12. Make your Website More Linkable
Try to get others to share your links around the web. To do this, you must improve your site’s linkability. The best way to do this is make sure website’s best assets are visible on the most important areas of your site like the sidebar or header.
Ali Salman is an online marketing strategist who have worked with Coca-Cola, Extreme Pita, Mucho Burrito, KIA, Honda and other Fortune 500 companies. Ali Salman now heads Rapid Boost Marketing - Canada's fastest growing search marketing agency. RBM clients include Fortune 500's and medium size businesses across North America. Ali as RBM CMO leads his team in building and managing quality, high-performing and cost-effective interactive campaigns and programs for our company's customers and partners. In his career, he has significantly improved campaign performance for large brands such as Government of Alberta, Liberal Party, Workopolis, Cathay Pacific, as well as medium to large retailers and high-tech B2B-enterprise niches.
Ali and his team develop online promotional concepts that spark viral growth through search and social media for RBM clients, devising strategies that use search engines and more to reach key demographic segments in the ways they're most likely to be receptive. Ali Salman also oversees corporate marketing initiatives for Rapid Boost Marketing, including strategic communications counsel, public and analyst relations and client education programming.
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