I think we all agree when we say that Google has completely revolutionised the way Search Engine Optimisation works. Before Google was even a thing, search engines like Yahoo and Lycos were the world’s mainstream search engines. These search engines simply focused on the actual content of the sites to list them in the search result pages based on keyword matching.
After Google took over as the mainstream search engine for every internet user across the world, it became a lot more complex to get your site ranked in the first pages of search engine results, or as Google puts it, Search Engine Results Pages (SERP). In order to get your site listed on the first page of SERP, there are a lot of factors you need to consider. Integrating the most searched keywords, optimising your content’s layout, and ensuring the relevancy of your content, is just the start of Search Engine Optimisation.
Enter Link Building, one of the major factors in the SEO game. Link building for SEO is among the most important factors that lead to acceptable rankings in not just Google’s search results but other search engines too. You might be wondering, what exactly is link building, and why exactly is it so important?
What is Link Building? And Why Link Building is Important
Link building for SEO is essentially the process of getting other sites that are reputable and have high rankings to put your website’s link on their page. This allows your website to drive your partnering site’s traffic to your site, called referral traffic, and helps your site get recognised by Google in a search engine query. This is because a strong backlink profile is one of the major factors in ranking high up in search engine results. The concept is called “Authority Building,” and it works by integrating high-quality links, and “quality” is the key here.
Google rolled out an update called “Google Penguin,” which not only checks for the number of links but focuses on the quality of those links. This was Google’s response to people manipulating Google’s search algorithm by multiplying the number of these links to drive more traffic and rank high in the search results pages. Learn more about Google Penguin.
Another reason why you need to pay a lot of attention to links is that with Google’s PageRank Algorithm, not just your website’s content is put under the microscope, but also how many people are linked to the webpage where your content is published.
So, make sure you only pick the most reputable, relevant and quality traffic sites, so your site becomes a “high-authority” website that Google trusts to list on its first search results page. But how exactly can you go about judging sites to link with? What matters here?
What Makes A Link, A Quality Link?
Here’s how you can tell a link and a high quality backlink apart. Let’s start with the most important one.
You can find websites with an incredible authority score, rank higher than anything, have excellent traffic, and have exceptional keyword placement. Still, none of it will matter if the site’s content is not relevant to your niche. Relevant link building is the name of the game! Google doesn’t just look for figures; it looks for context. If your links aren’t placed on the relevant sites, you might not get any return on your investment.
Relevance is the most important factor in picking sites to place your links in. Relevancy is something that you have to analyse by yourself; there are no tools or fancy tricks that can help you determine this factor; you’re just gonna have to eyeball this one.
Let’s understand this with an example. Suppose you’re business supplies performance car parts all over the West Coast, and you find this incredible site in your region to get your link placed. The website has an exceptional authority score, it is a very high-traffic site, people love the brand, its reputation is going to help get your name out there, and most importantly, they want to partner with you. All of that sounds perfect, except that it’s a phone company. This prospect will give you little to no return on your investment.
There’s a lot more you have to check when vetting a website to trust your links. Let’s keep moving, shall we?
Authority & Ranking Scores
If anyone knows anything about SEO, they would be familiar with Moz; Moz.com is an SEO software suite that offers a plethora of SEO tools. Moz is known for setting standards and coming up with new ways to measure the SEO of sites in unique and effective ways. Page Authority is another measure introduced by Moz. The score helps measure the likeliness of how well a particular webpage will rank based on the content could range anywhere from 0 to 100. Notice how we used the phrase “based on the search engine results pages. The Page Authority, or simply PA, of a website, content?” Well, that’s because Moz offers another SEO metric as well that is used to judge sites on a global level.
You might have heard about other scores as well, Domain Rating (DR) and Page Rank (PR). These scores are used to determine the quality of a site’s backlinks. PA and DA are authority scores developed by Moz. Meanwhile, DR and PR are rating measures developed by Ahrefs. These matter when you have to figuratively judge a site, but why exactly do they matter?
Using Metrics To Find A Quality Link
Now that you’re familiar with the various scores, ratings, and rankings that you use to judge a site, we can apply them practically in our link building for SEO process. Let’s start with the basic ones.
Ranks, Ratings & Authority
Domain Audthority or Domain Rating and Page Authority or Page Rating are an important measures because they test a site’s backlink profile on a scale from 0 to 100, checking the quantity and quality of the backlinks. But the list doesn’t end there. PA, DA, DR, and PR are not the only terms you should be concerned about. You have to ensure that the site has a decent indexing rate. What does it mean? Well, it dictates how likely the content of a certain website can be indexed by Google. This is important because you obviously want your site to have the highest possible probability of getting indexed, and that can only happen by building links with a site that has a high indexing rate.
Referring domains and number of backlinks are another crucial factor in judging a site. This tells you how many other sites are linked to a website. This differs from backlinks because backlinks are essentially anchor links that take you from one webpage to another. Referring domains are links that lead to link from other websites. This is considered an important factor in proving your site’s trustworthiness and credibility to search engines.
Lastly, one of the most important factors in link building for SEO is consistent traffic. You have to make sure that the site you’re about to trust and partner with has a steady traffic flow rate. You want to stay away from big surges in a site’s traffic rates. This would most probably mean black hat SEO and spamming. So, the traffic has to have steady growth and decline rates.
These scores are among the few comparative factors of how Google awards high rankings to websites. So, what have we learned so far? Let’s take another look at it, shall we? In order to get your site listed among the top results of search engine results, you need a strong backlink profile. Your website not only has to have the right amount of links, but they also have to be high-quality links. Otherwise, Google might not trust your website enough to place it on its first pages.
At this point, you might have a basic idea of what link building is, why it’s so important in scoring high SEO rankings, and an understanding of picking sites to partner with. But this isn’t just a white hat link building tutorial; we will go over everything, so you have absolutely everything that you need! Let’s continue.
How Does The Link Building Process Work?
Link building for SEO is not as simple as just finding the most reputable sites and placing your links on their site, and just driving more traffic to your site. The process is time-taking, and it requires strategic planning to successfully establish a healthy backlink profile that ultimately allows you to boost your site’s SEO rankings!
If you’re looking to place your link on the website, there are a couple of ways to go about it. The first is to manually place your link on the website of your choosing. This is when you place links by guest posting, niche edits, commenting on blog posts, posting in that site’s forum, and so on. But, as simple as this link building method is, in Google’s eyes, this is the least valuable link-building technique, and Google’s search algorithm treats it as so. There’s also the “elephant in the room” called SPAM! If you aren’t careful, this might simply be considered as spamming your link across the internet, which will put you and your brand’s image in a very bad spot.
So, is there another way that could allow you to create a solid backlink profile without spamming?
High-Quality Backlinks & Procuring Them
Of course, there is. You could reach out to the authors of the website to place your links. This works by designing and launching a successful and effective blogger outreach campaign. The concept behind it is that you ask the authors to place your links, and in return, you provide some kind of benefit to their site.
The following list contains link building strategies you can implement to procure high quality backlinks for your site!
Let’s start with our first link building strategy!
Guest Posting & Niche Edits For SEO link-building!
Guest posting is the process of providing quality content to the site you want to place your links. They get free content, and you get your website linked to a reputable, influential and high-authority site that would directly boost your SEO rankings! But that’s not all. Sometimes websites have great content, but they might not feel like going into the nitty gritty details, and there could be a number of reasons why; it may not be their niche, or they might not have the relevant writers. So, this is where you can offer them to place your website’s link where you’ve published a very detailed article on the same topic. These topics can even be guides, product reviews, or anything that your brand has a grip on!
These are two of the most effective and common methods of getting your links integrated into high-ranking websites and earning quite a decent amount of traffic. To learn more about guest posting and niche edits, visit our guest posting services page and niche edit services page. Let’s move to the next strategy, shall we?
Ever Heard Of Broken Link-Building?
Another method of scoring a healthy link placement partnership is offering replacement links to websites. Links get broken, and it creates opportunities for other businesses to offer replacement links. This is where you can offer your link to replace a broken one, which would benefit not only you but the partnering site as well. Once you figure that out, you can create healthy relationships with these sites, and they’ll place your links in the right spot. Make sure that you work out every detail, especially where your links are going to be placed on their web pages. Just like we talked about, the higher up your links are placed, the higher the chances are of gaining more traction.
Visual Assets or Infographics
Suppose your selected prospect already has quality content, and all their link are working. What else can you offer? Well, every website needs quality images, videos or animations, right? That’s where you can come in! You can reach out to websites of your choice and offer them visual assets and in-exchange, they can place a link routing back to your site. Creative infographics are always needed, this is where you can build sustainable relationships with reputable brands.
Comments On Blogs & Community Sites
This strategy is among the least rewarding ones, and if not done properly, they might look like spam, so pay close attention! If your selected prospect is not interested in content, infographics, or even broken link replacement, you can still link your site using comments, and community posts. The concept behind is plain old-fashioned marketing, you find relevant communities or blogs, and you just put your name out there in a casual way, so it doesn’t feel like you’re spamming. This strategy works, but not as well as the other ones!
This might be something you haven’t heard that much about. But, profile backlinks are among common link building for SEO techniques. Profile backlinks are links placed on social media platforms that link to your site’s profile or even your homepage.
Business Directory Listing For Local SEO!
Business directories are a very effective source of local SEO growth. The process is straightforward, you add your website’s link in high traffic reputable business directories and customers can now find your business on those directories. Another major benefit is that search engines consider your site as a trusted and credible business because of these links. We offer the best local citation services, get in touch with us.
As the name suggests, content marketing is promoting content that links to your site. This technique is an excellent method of increasing your site’s online visibility and, of course, beneficial for link building. Some of the most common content marketing solutions can be PR mentions, case studies, eBooks, mentions of your site on social media, and even slide sharing.
These are just some general strategies on how to build backlinks, but in order to launch an effective outreach campaign, you have to look for the right sites at the right time and in the right way! You have to offer them something they don’t have. If you want more information about blogger outreach, we offer world-class outreach services. Learn more here.
Types Of Links
Now that we have an overview of what to look for, we can go into some details.
There are several types of links in link building for SEO. Each of these links has something unique to offer, and each of them has its own drawbacks too. So, it’s important to learn about these links and understand what the right choice for your site is.
What Are Nofollow Links?
The first on our list are Nofollow links. Nofollow links, as the name suggests, are links that tell the search engines not to proceed to that particular link. The links are, of course, redirecting the website’s users to that link’s address, so if the website’s author does not want the search engines to follow that link, they use a special tag called nofollow tag, hence the name, nofollow links. When nofollow links are used, the rankings of the destination domain are not affected because the nofollow link specifically tells the search engine not to follow that link. In conclusion, nofollow links DO NOT directly help your SEO rankings. Notice how we said directly? That’s because a boost to your site’s SEO rankings is not the only thing that matters.
Benefits of Nofollow Links
- Nofollow links allow your site to gain referral traffic and help make your site seem natural.
- Nofollow links are a very rewarding source for referral traffic; more often than not, they drive more referral traffic to your site than followed links. So, it might not directly help boost your SEO rankings, but it will help bring more traffic to your site.
- It also makes your website’s backlink profile seem natural and genuine. Your website has to have an appropriate amount of dofollow and nofollow links. There’s something called too many followed links, Google’s algorithm might catch a suspicion that a site is using paid followed links that aren’t genuine. It might result in a penalty from Google because it is simply against Google’s Webmaster guidelines. Learn more about this here.
What are DoFollow links?
Speaking of, let’s see what dofollow links are. Links that aren’t nofollow are dofollow links; that’s it. Dofollow links are links that lead to boosting your site’s rankings. These links transfer link juice, which directly helps in boosting your website authority in Google and attracting more traffic to your site. Dofollow links directly help in improving your site’s ranking because search engines know that that site is vouching for your brand; thus, your site is trusted and has a very high chance of climbing to the top of the search results! All you need to remember is that the ratio of dofollow links to nofollow links is appropriate, so everything seems natural.
Importance Of Link Placement
Once you’ve picked the most suitable site to partner with, now comes the question of where exactly your links should be placed so you can get the maximum amount of return from this stake. Link placement is an art. Without proper placement, you will never be able to get the return you expect. Let’s take a closer look at this.
Why Does It Matter?
It is a widely known fact that when a user visits a website, they are very likely to click on links right there in front of them, like in the webpage’s main content. Your link can be embedded in anything that seems appropriate and natural, depending on the website’s content, layout, and theme. The more prominent and higher your link is placed, the higher the probability of users clicking that link. Compare that with a link placement in the section of a webpage that’s not in the direct line of sight of the user, your link will be buried, and there’s a very probable chance that no one would click on that link. Ask yourself, how often do you go and click a random link that’s embedded deep down in the corners of a website? So, make sure that your link placement is done right.
Strategic Link Placement!
Picking the best sites won’t matter if you don’t ensure that your links are prominent and look genuine. It might seem like a simple concept, but more often than not, it’s much more than that. Placing your link in exactly the right content, ensuring that the flow of the content is not disrupted, and most importantly, not making it look spammed or forced is an art, and it is necessary to gain maximal traction and protect your brand’s image. Strategic link placement is the name of the game, and it is crucial that you proceed with caution and pay enormous attention to detail in this matter. One case of link spamming can damage your brand’s image.
A simple trick is to ensure that your link has some sort of context to it. Like when you visit a website, and there’s a hyperlink embedded in the content, the text surrounding that link ensures that it doesn’t look out of place and users know exactly what this link will lead to and what the intention of this link is. If there’s no context, it will seem forced, and it will feel like spam.
Let’s take A Break
That’s a lot of information, isn’t it? Let’s do a recap of what we’ve learned so far. Link building is an incredibly rewarding SEO technique that allows your site to be ranked in the first pages of search engine results. Link building is among the major factors in SERP ranking. Link building depends on a variety of concepts, but the most important ones include relevancy, indexing rate, page and domain authority and rating score, organically ranked keywords, quality traffic, and link placement. We have learned what each of those things is and what they mean to your site’s rankings. Our link building guide will help you create ingenious link building strategies. Let’s keep moving down the list and look at the next factor in a successful link-building campaign!
The OutreachGirls Official Link Building Guide!
Relevance. And Relevance!
First and foremost, understand your business’s niche. Finding out the correct audience for your products or services is business 101. Once you know exactly who to market to, you will have a clear idea of which websites to place your links on. So, the first and one of the most important steps in successful link-building is understanding your niche and your audience. Find the right sites to partner with that are guaranteed to provide your business with the growth and recognition it needs.
How Can A Link Building Agency Help Here
If you think you aren’t in touch with the community and its trends, don’t worry! This is exactly what a link-building agency is for. A quality link-building service provider offers a wide range of services that cover the entire process of creating a strong backlink profile for your site that actually works!
OutreachGirls has over 12 years of experience in doing just that, and if you don’t want to go into the trouble of finding the right prospects and determining whether they will offer value to your business, we can do it for you. This is covered in our blogger outreach services, which, coincidently, is the next stage of the process.
Outreach Like A Pro!
The outreach stage, which is exactly what it sounds like, is where you reach out to the sites you picked in order to create a partnership with them. Recall when we talked about how these partnerships work. The goal is to find viable sites that are willing to place your links in return for something unique that you bring to the table. Consider implementing any of our above mentioned link building strategies!
Don’t Forget About The Ratio!
As for the types of links, keep the ratio of dofollow and nofollow links in your mind when reaching out to these sites. Even if a reputable brand offers nofollow links, you should highly consider it. Suppose you get offered a partnership with BBC to integrate one of your links into their webpage; even if it isn’t a dofollow link, this partnership will offer you immense brand exposure and drive a huge amount of referral traffic your way! Ensure that your partnering brand is offering an organic link placement and nothing less.
Learn more about how we can do this for you and take care of everything, so you don’t have to spend time finding and picking the right sites!
Placement Is The Key
Once you’ve created a successful partnership and ensured that the ratio of dofollow to nofollow links is appropriate, you need to ensure that your link is placed right where you want.
- The placement is natural and has context
- The content is flowing naturally
- Your link placement is in the reader’s line of sight!
- Quality Placement Around Quality Content!
Brands may ask you to use guest posts to place your links. The content has to be rich, unique and relevant for strategic link placement.
To make sure you do this the right way, hire a quality agency like ours that can provide native-level content in 50+ languages and for over 100 countries. Learn more here.
So, In Conclusion…
We hope we have covered every query or confusion you had about link building for SEO and why it matters in our ultimate guide to link building! To summarise the approach we suggested, let’s look back at what we learned. Thoroughly vet every potential prospect after you’ve understood your niche and your audience. There are several SEO analysis tools on the internet that can help you judge these sites.
Once you’ve picked the best of the best, reach out to these sites in a professional manner, offering them something unique and rewarding that they can’t refuse. Ensure that your link placement is natural and that there is no chance of someone considering your link spam. Keep in mind that a healthy and genuine backlink profile has to have nofollow and dofollow links in it. That’s all, isn’t it?
Looking For Ingenious Link Building?
Link building for SEO is a complex, time-consuming and stressful task. Still, the rewards it offers are incomparable, and it provides an exceptional boost in your SEO rankings that guarantee a higher placement in the SERPs.
OutreachGirls is experienced in building healthy backlink profiles for businesses of all niches, we have built relationships with several world-renowned brands, and we promise our customers nothing less than unimaginable business growth and brand recognition. We do the hard work for you, so you don’t have to! Learn more about what we have to offer you and how much your business needs OutreachGirls by following the link.
Get in touch with us and ensure growth to your business unlike ever before!