If you’re planning on generating traffic through SEO, it’s important that you understand that there two major components to a successful campaign. One is the on-page factors which consist of things like your website’s loading speed, keyword optimization, and other elements that are inherent to your site. The other is the off-page factors which consist of backlinks pointing to your website.
Understanding Link Building
If you’ve been working on your site’s on-page factors but haven’t been seeing the results you’ve hoped for, link building can help make the difference. But just what is link building and what does it consist of? To help the search engines determine which pages should rank higher than the others in the search results, one of the major factors they use is the number of links pointing to the page.
You can think of links as votes for a site. This often leads many website owners to try to generate a high number of links, but it’s important to know that it’s not just the sheer number of links that points to a page. Google focuses more on quality links as opposed to the quantity. They look at things like the keyword anchor text (keywords used to link back to your page), the diversity of anchor text, if links are related to your site’s topic, the authority of the sites linking to you, and more.
By getting a high number of quality links to your site and pages, the higher your rankings will be. This will lead to increased traffic which translates to more leads and sales for your business. Higher rankings in the search engines also leads to more visibility for your brand, and higher authority in your market or industry.
How to Start a Link Building Campaign
Now that you understand the importance of link building in SEO, it’s time to learn how to go about building these links. The first step is to give other sites a good reason to link to your site naturally. When a site does link to you, then it’s usually because your site has quality content that offers value to their audience. That’s why you want to put the focus on creating compelling, relevant unique, and valuable content to your audience. To learn about creating great content for SEO, use this guide.
The second step is to plan out an outreach campaign. Look for sites that may make great link exchange partners and authority sites that are accepting guest bloggers. For link exchange partners, you want to aim for sites with a similar page rank as you as they’ll be more likely to work with you opposed to sites that have more rankings, higher page rank, and authority. Try to approach them to see if they’d be interested in adding a link back to one of your content pages in return for you doing the same.
For guest blogging opportunities, you want to focus on creating content for authoritative sites in your market or industry. The reason why is because Google thinks low quality guest blogging games their system. However, getting links back to your site by guest blogging on established, high quality sites that offer value to their audience still works.
The last step is to focus on marketing your content. Once you’ve created some content, you want to distribute it all over the web to generate links naturally. You want to use as many channels and methods as possible, including your social media platforms, email newsletters, press releases, content aggregation sites, community sites, syndication sites, and alternative content hubs (Slideshare, YouTube, Visually, etc.).
Some things you want to avoid are getting links on spammy/low quality sites, engaging in link farms (link exchange sites that offer no content and value), and acquiring links from sites that are unrelated to your topic. Here are some other beginner SEO mistakes you want to avoid.
That’s a basic guide to link building and how you can get started with a link building campaign. While link building is probably the more important of the two components in a SEO campaign, the on-page factors of SEO cannot be overlooked. A great link building campaign with poor on-page optimization can hurt your rankings and diminish your efforts. A successful SEO campaign requires that you get everything right if you want to see outstanding results.