When people are building a business and planning their marketing, it’s normal to think about what advertising you might do or how your website will serve your prospective audience, but link building for SEO? I would be really surprised if that was on your list.
However, link building strategies can have a major impact on the success of your searchability through search engines like Google and Bing. In this blog we’ll talk about high quality links, what building links looks like, and how other websites can help you generate links and referral traffic to your site. Use these dos and don’ts to improve your link building strategy and draw more people to your website and business.
What’s the Big Deal About Link Building?
Link building is a way to improve your search engine ranking — and we’re big believers in search engine optimization here at J.O. Agency (head here and here to read more). Simply put: Links impact how well you show up in people’s search engine results. I love how Joanne Camarace equates link building to social proof. “When Google looks at your website, having strong, authoritative links pointing back to your content signals that you are trustworthy and informative.” It proves you’re an authoritative site for your subject, product, etc.
Bottom line: Link building gives credence to authoritative websites. For example, Wikipedia is often at the top of search results for any topic — Princess Diana to the Bering Strait — because so many websites link to it. If you are wanting to build up your own website with domain authority, it’s time to add link building efforts to your list of to dos.
What to Know About High Quality Links
Let’s start with a few definitions related to link building for SEO.
- High quality backlinks are links to your website from another quality, credible website. For example, J.O.Agency linking to Visit Fort Worth’s events web page is a quality link.
- Low quality links, as the Search Engine Journal explains it, are links that come from sites with little authority. For example, there are websites where you can request links to your site. Search engines look down on this technique and do not reward it because it’s much less organic. You can read more about low quality links in Google’s guidelines here.
- Internal links are links pointing from one page on your website to another. For example, this link to J.O.’s About page is an internal link.
- External links are when another website links to your website. These are harder to achieve, but worth the effort. For example, if the Bass Performance Hall website links to the J.O. Agency website, that would be an external link.
- Broken links are links that no longer work. Maybe the linked page has been deleted or the web address has been altered in some way. Regardless, the link does not work and is, therefore, broken.
In a perfect world, lots of other prominent websites like the Wall Street Journal, for example, would link to your site to prove you are an authority on your subject. That may very well happen, but you may also have to work to build links, especially high quality links. We’ll talk more about how to build high quality links below.
The Benefits of Link Building for Search Engines
According to uSERP, the first ranking page on Google has an average of 3.8x more backlinks than pages 2-10. This means that link building for SEO purposes should be a part of your strategy as you plan web pages, a new blog post, and build relationships with businesses in your network. Link building will help major search engines get to know you, drive organic traffic to your site, and build trust with audiences.
Link Building Dos and Don’t’s to Start Following Today
Let these dos and don’ts guide your link building tactics and link building campaigns.
Do create quality content that will attract links.
Not all links are created equal. The easiest way to encourage links to your website is to include link worthy content on your website. You might even call this link bait! If you have a blog, this is a great place to create content that may be helpful to others in your industry or share what you’re interested in, learning or pursing in your work this year.
Remember that social media is another excellent way to link to quality content. Be sure you are sharing your blog posts, business updates, new prodcuts, etc. on social media and linking to your website there as well.
Don’t use spammy link building techniques.
As we’ve already discussed, low quality links often come from spammy websites. While buying links may be tempting, it’s best to build backlinks by connecting with legit external websites and acquiring links by making quality content people want to link to. The quality of the linking page matters to your overall SEO success.
Do reach out to high quality sites and relevant websites.
A great way to generate links is to introduce yourself to relevant businesses and other website owners and ask if they would be interested in having you write something for their blog. Guest blogging would allow you to expand your network, introduce yourself to a new audience, and in the article link back to your site.
Another way that you can connect to other sites is through broken link building. Broken link building is a process of going through another website and finding links that no longer work. Most site owners would love to know about a broken link on their site. When you find the broken link, you can contact the site owner, let me know about the broken link and then offer a new high quality link pointing to similar content on your own website.
Don’t be afraid to tap into your network to build links.
When it comes to creating backlinks pointing back to your site, don’t be afraid to reach out to contacts within your network. J.O. Agency, for example, is connected to a lot of small businesses in our South Main Village neighborhood and greater Near Southside community. We could reach out to our network and ask to guest write something or offer a replacement to a broken link on their site. We could also reach out to past clients and ask if they’d be interested in linking to a case study we’ve written about their recent super successful marketing campaign. They could link to it from their social accounts, for example.
Bottom line: Link building efforts take some creativity, but building relationships with other site owners is worth the investment of time and writing.
J.O. Agency Thinks About the Small Things
Whether it’s building links or building relationships with your target audience, J.O. Agency understands the small things that amount to major success. We’ll help you build high quality websites, build relationships with your audience, rebrand your department and figure out the best way to communicate your message your audience and the public. Let’s start talking about how we can partner together — take a look at our past work here. When you’re ready, contact our team here on our website or call 817-335-0100.