What comes to mind when you hear the word “link juice”? No, it’s not related to a Nelly song from the early 2000s. Getting good “link juice” also know as link building is one of the most essential practices when it comes to SEO (search engine optimization). A link is the blue, underlined,clickable text on a page, that when clicked on, will take you to another specific webpage. The practice of getting other websites to link to your website via this clickable text is called link building.
Why is link building so important? Well, in order for search engines like Google to rank your website, they need to know if your site is worth showing. Google counts links to your website from other sites as a “vote” towards the popularity and relevance of your website. If you want your site to rank and show up high on the page for your desired search terms you should create and invest in a killer link building campaign. Below I have outlined 3 tips on link building: what links you should go after, what to look for in a link, and how to get links to your website! Let’s start with outlining different types of links-
What types of links should you go after?
Before starting your link building campaign, you need to know there are a few different types of links, both good and bad. Let’s look at the main ones-
These are the links you are already inherently getting without having to ask for them. By creating fresh, news worthy content on your website, other sites will start to naturally link to you. Other websites just naturally link to you because it just makes sense for them to.
This involves manually reaching out to relevant websites/blogs, through email campaigns, and asking them to link to your site. When reaching out to sites and bloggers, you also need to give them a reason to link to your site (more on that below).
Stay away from these links! Self- created links are considered very spammy and include posting links in comment sections of blogs, putting links in guest post signatures, posting links in online forums, etc. Google will devalue these links and could even penalize your website if you do this.
What you should look for in a link?
If getting any website on the internet to link to you was an option, then link building would be pretty easy, wouldn’t it? Google has cracked down tremendously on spammy link building practices and their algorithms can easily detect if you are trying to do this. You need to build legitimate links that show you are a trusted website that Google should promote. So let’s look at what this process is like, how to find a link and/or website to get a link from and what they needs to have before you request a link from them.
Get links from websites with a high MozRank. MozRank is a website ranking factor (on a scale of 0-10) that shows how popular a website is on the internet. Generally, a website with a higher MozRank means a higher ranking on search engines. Therefore, if you get a link from a popular website with a high MozRank, you are more likely to increase your sites popularity too. MozBar from Moz is a great tool to help detect these types of metrics for any website.
Links from a website with a high Domain Authority are great. Domain Authority is a ranking factor (on a scale of 1-100) that is a combination of the websites age, popularity, and size. The ranking factor has direct impact on how the website will rank on Google. So getting links from a site with a high DA means a better jump for your sites ranking as well. MozBar is great to use for crawling a sites domain authority.
Getting a link from a website that relates to yours is more beneficial to your ranking than getting a link from a site that is not relevant to what you do at all. If you are getting links from a completely irrelevant website, Google will see this and know it’s probably not legitimate. Links from relevant websites will show Google that you’re website is also topical, relevant, and useful, in turn it would benefit them to put your page higher up in their searches. After all, Google’s goal is to provide the most relevant, useful information in their search results.
Avoid getting links for websites that have multiple links on one page. This is known as “link stuffing”. Being linked to from a page with only a few links is much better. The value of your link will be diluted by the other links on the page, so fewer links means stronger impact on your ranking. Also getting a link from the same domain more than once is pretty much pointless, as multiple links will again be diluted and not as valuable.
Where to find your links?
Now that you know which links are the best to look for, it is essential to know where you can find them. Link Building combines a little bit of creativity, marketing, and sales, once you know your sweet spot on where to find them, you are sure to reap the results. Let’s look at some ideas to get you started-
Create a Blog
One of the easiest and quickest ways to start getting links is to start a company blog. If you consistently update your blog with fresh-relevant information and “share-worthy” content, bloggers and other sites will naturally start linking to and sharing this information.
This is a great way to jumpstart your link building campaign. Analyze who is ranking high for the keywords you want to rank for and see who linked to their page. Once you know which domains were linking to your competitors you can reach out to them too and see if they would like to link to your website as well.
Know your Audience/Customer Base
Figure out who would be interested in what you are trying to link to and reach out to them. Show these groups that you are reaching out to, that you are genuine and not there just to use them for a link, let them know that linking to your site would benefit them as well!
Use your Current Customers and Partners
Reaching out to loyal customers and your business partners/suppliers is a great way to get reputable links going to your website. You can ask your customers to create product review posts on his/her own personal blog. Ask your top suppliers to post a link on their site, perhaps under their partnership links page or at the bottom of the page where they list who they work with. You can also create contests or giveaways for your customers, this will have them linking to your contest or giveaway page!
Strike the Attention of the Media
Create viral content or do something newsworthy to get the attention of the press, media, and bloggers. Perhaps your company allows you to bring your dog to work, or you have a coworker who was on a reality tv show, or your company participated in a day of community service, share this information and it is sure to get linked to!
Now that you are ready to start creating your link building plan, there are a few things that you should keep in mind. Make sure you set goals for your campaign, analyze the feedback you are getting from your outreach, and decide how you are going to measure your success. Link Building is definitely not an easy task but once you get it right, you are bound to see great results. Don’t let a failed link building campaign deter you from trying something else. Link Building is like creating the perfect recipe, a little bit of this and little bit of that, maybe take out some of this, etc. Different link building strategies work better for different companies and it can take a little bit of patience and persistence. So get that link juice to start flowing and I assure you, you are going to be refreshed with the outcome!
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