It’s a bit of an oversimplified explanation, but the more high-quality pages that link to one of your pages, the greater that page’s authority. The greater that page’s authority, the better it’s likely to rank on Google. The higher your PageRank, the more traffic you get through organic search.
When it comes to building up your website and creating brand awareness, link building is arguably one of the best strategies at your disposal—but you must first understand how it works.
What is Link Building?
Link building is the process of generating more inbound links to your website. Said links must be from websites that themselves have a reasonably high E-A-T score—Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness. In simple terms, what this means is that they have an established reputation for publishing authentic, informative, high-quality content.
How Do You Start Link Building?
As with any marketing or growth strategy, the first step in any link building campaign is to define what you want to accomplish with it.
Are you trying to establish yourself as an authority in your sector? Are you looking to generate conversions and inspire more people to purchase your products or services? Or do you simply want to generate traffic and increase awareness of your brand?
What Are Some Common Link Building Strategies?
Modern link building is generally predicated on a very simple idea—if you create excellent content, people will link to that content. Informative, entertaining, and well-researched blog posts can easily generate a ton of passive inbound links to your website, particularly if they rank well on the search engine results page. Similarly, highly shareable content can draw considerable traffic from social media.
However, if you want to take a more active role in your link building efforts, you generally have three options.
- Guest blogging. Find a well-established site in either your niche or a related one, and create guest content that can be published on that site with a link redirecting back to you. Typically, it’s advisable to focus on sites with guest editorial programs, but that doesn’t mean you can’t reach out if you find a promising prospect—but do not, under any circumstances, use a generic email template.
- Seek out broken links. Basically, this involves looking at high-quality sites and searching for broken or outdated links. When you find one, contact the webmaster and offer to replace the link with similar content on your own site.
- Syndicated content. Somewhat similar to guest blogging, this involves creating high-quality content such as an infographic, then submitting it to user-driven directories and content sites.
What Link Building Tactics Should I Avoid?
Let’s wrap things up with a quick list of link building tactics that are not only doomed to fail, but likely to get your site penalized in the process:
- Buying your inbound links.
- Using a link farm or content mill.
- Paid content disguised as organic content.
- Purchasing/creating and interlinking multiple websites.
- Spamming links in comments, forums, etc.