Did you know that according to a survey by Moz, approximately 37 percent of online businesses spend an estimated $10,000 to $50,000 per month on link-building alone, deploying tactics like content and outreach, paid links, press releases, and more? While investing such a staggering amount into building backlinks is certain to be successful in one way or another, it simply isn’t necessary anymore. The point of building quality backlinks is for Google to recognize new Web pages as well as to determine how a Website should rank in the search engine’s results.
Familiarizing yourself with SEO basics, using the right SEO tools, and building a smart SEO strategy can go a long way when it comes to developing high-quality links back to your site. As always, practice smart online etiquette and remember Google’s rules about spamming.
Before you begin your backlink-building journey, it’s important to understand that not all links are created equal. In order to get the most out of your link-building experience, it is essential that you understand the difference between links from high-quality sites and those of lesser quality. While the right inbound links can significantly boost your Google ranking, links from the wrong sites can leave you penalized.
A high-quality site is one that provides relevant, useful information, and is free from common SEO mishaps. In most cases, a high-quality site is linked to by other high-quality websites and contains trustworthy, reliable content that is optimized for search engines without being “over-optimized.” A great way to test the quality of a site is to run it through Moz’s Open Site Explorer and see the site’s number of backlinks, MozRank, and other metrics.
Simple Link-Building Strategies
While you could spend tens of thousands of dollars each month investing in the art of link-building, there are a number of other affordable strategies that can prove to be just as beneficial. The No. 1 thing to keep in mind with link-building is that ALL campaigns should begin with something worth linking to.
- Create valuable content: The first step toward earning links is to build content that is relevant and garners the attention of your target market. Great content has the ability to be shared across the web, which indirectly and organically builds quality links back to your site.
- Check link value of sites: As mentioned earlier, Moz’s Open Site Explorer is an incredible tool to check out a site’s link value. Simply search a URL (or download the toolbar for even easier access to data) and see metrics like page authority, spam scores, social stats, inbound links, top pages, and even link opportunities to help you access whether or not you want to be linked on that particular site.
- Outreach and PR: Bloggers on high-quality sites are a great source to strengthen brand awareness as well as get a link back to your site. Send a personalized email to blogs in your niche and let them know about your products or services that are relevant to their readers. Ask if they might think your product or service is worth sharing, and be sure to include a link.
- Find unlinked mentions: Setting up Google Alerts and using tools like Buzzsumo or Mention.net are great ways to see when people are talking about your brand. If they mentioned your product or service but didn’t link back to your site, try sending them an email.
Putting these powerful strategies into practice can not only increase the number of high-quality backlinks you receive at virtually no cost to you, but significantly increase your site’s traffic, building both your revenue and your brand.