Here’s an interesting fact to kick things off; it is estimated that link popularity of a web page accounts for about 22.33 percent of Google’s ranking algorithm.
Many digital marketers have been in the link building game for a while. They know how to get external links via guest posts, podcast interviews and resource pages.
What they don’t know is that without a focused strategy,all their Link building activities may be in vain.
Is your link building strategy not delivering results?
That’s because it lacks a strategy. It lacks clear objectives. It isn’t aimed to achieve long-term results.
The SEO goal for any business is to position their website/business as a trusted source on Google. This ultimately brings you more visibility and organic traffic.
What you really need is link building strategies that actually work; strategies that focus on the long-term growth rather than a short-term growth spurt that falters and dies and after a few months.
To develop a bulletproof strategy to leverage link building, you need to get the backstory.
Why short-term link building strategies fail
Most short-term link building strategies are about pulling wool over the eyes of Google and staying under the radar for as long as possible.
The strategies we’re talking about include low quality guest posting, link directories, blog comments, web directories and private blog networks.
While such strategies can deliver results in the short-term, you are bound to run into problems later.
Google developers keep updating and changing algorithms, which means that you can’t stay under the radar forever.
When this catches up to you (and it will) your website may get penalized, and will experience a massive fall in rankings, which will inevitably be followed by sharp drops in traffic.
And let us tell you that once you’ve been penalized by Google, it takes a gigantic amount of work and effort to recover—or a large amount of money if you’re outsourcing the work.
The truth is that online businesses and blogs that have been consistently successful think 5 to 10 years ahead and rely on long-term link building strategies rather than short-term ones.
And that is what you should do as well.
Natural link building
We’ve seen plenty of tactics and hacks—black hat, white hat, grey hat, and there’s always been a debate raging in regards to what these labels actually mean.
However, the fact of the matter remains that none of these was the right way to go about. Instead, natural link building is how it always should have been done.
When developing a link building strategy, just take search engines completely out of the equation.
Just forget about what a particular link will do for the SEO for your website and just ask yourself. “Would I still want that link if search engines like Google didn’t exist?”
When it’s done the right way, link building offers plenty of benefits, including:
These things are the biggest contributors to the growth of your blog and ensure it’s viable as a sustainable business in the long-term. And that’s all that really matters.
Of course, you can go the other way and get some instant success that is swiftly followed by a drastic fall in rankings when Google rolls out yet another algorithm update.
Building strong foundations for your link building strategies
Any link building strategy needs to have a solid foundation in order to be successful in the long run.
So without further ado, let’s talk about how you can fine-tune the natural link building approach we’ve mentioned and transform it into an effective, long-term link-building strategy that can consistently deliver results in terms of improving your rankings, authority and traffic.
So, the question we must now address is “What does a good link look like?”
Well, to put it in a nutshell, a good link goes beyond just SEO metrics. Like we discussed above, in order to develop a successful long-term link building strategy, we need to steer clear of the isolated view of just taking the SEO impact of the link into consideration.
It’s also important to think about engagement metrics.
To be honest, SEO is just one component of the puzzle, and when you stop to think about it, isn’t SEO just a means to an end?
The ultimate goal isn’t SEO and it never should be. In order to be successful with your link building strategy, you have to think about the big picture.
So ultimately, it all really comes down to what makes a good mention.
For instance, a mention on a website that links back to your blog can be beneficial in a variety of ways. For example, being cited as an expert on Forbes makes for great social proof, doesn’t it?
There are other elements you need to take into consideration as well, including:
- Social media following
- Email marketing strategy
- Overall traffic
- Posting frequency
- Content quality
- Editorial guidelines
- Potential traffic referrals
It is the combination of these elements that form the picture of how helpful a website can be in terms of enhancing the visibility of your blog.
How you can use social media and content marketing for effective link building
It is important to understand that link building isn’t something that can exist in isolation. It’s just a small component of the marketing strategy machine.
It only works when it’s used in conjunction with a number of promotional channels.
Social media and content marketing can be particularly helpful when it comes to helping your link building endeavors.
There are different types of content that you can use to enhance your link building efforts. Some examples include:
- Blog posts
- PDF guides
- Interactive content
If you’re looking for a simple and straightforward piece of content to create, a good old blog should do the trick.
However, there are certain types of posts that generate a higher number of back links than others. Some examples include:
- Thought leadership/opinion
- Detailed resource posts
- Group interviews
- Live video streams
- List posts
- News jacking
When you are creating your content, it is always worth mentioning the leading and most influential bloggers in your niche and linking to helpful content whenever it’s possible.
Just view your content as linkable assets, which can be used to connect online viewers to great content that will provide solutions to their problems or entertain them.
The next thing we will discuss is how you can use social media to seed your link building efforts.
In this day and age, there’s no bigger platform than social media when it comes to exposing your content to a large audience.
The higher the number of people that see your content, the higher your chances will be of earning links from other blogs.
So, the bottom line is that if you want to be successful with your link building efforts, focus on a long-term, natural approach, rather than a short-sighted, SEO-obsessed one.
There’s a lot more to a link building service than just SEO metrics.
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Joseph Dyson is an SEO expert at Search Berg. Experts in website SEO services, Search Berg provides small business SEO services like website rankings, website management, and reputation building, etc.