Over the years, SEOs have used a myriad of ways from guest blogging, forum commenting, blog commenting, content outreach to build links from other web profiles.
Tactics and strategies change, but principles stay the same. The forward thinking marketers in the industry understand one principle: creating great content with infographics, multimedia and high quality researched content will beat short term tactics.
However, research and personal experience shows that a great content marketing strategy isn’t enough. You’ll need links from other sites, also known as backlinks. Ideally, I want other SEO blogs, digital marketing websites and news websites to be linking to me about my tutorials and guides in a natural manner.
There should be no limit to the number links you want to get from others if your content is of quality and people link to you naturally. Matt Cutts, a engineer that worked for Google, stated to ‘get as many links as you can get’ if your links are achieved organically. Sites such as Youtube, Digg, and Stumble Upon get many incoming links due to its nature of producing engaging, funny and helpful content. Google would never penalize those site, would they?
So how can you about building backlinks for your site?
1. Listing Your Company on High-Quality Business Directories
Firstly, listing your company and services on business directories is a way build do follow backlinks. It’s free, but it requires manual effort.
Google takes a look at the quality of the directory to determine it’s page authority. You can determine the quality of directories by asking some important questions:
- Does the directory have minimal quality control to prevent spammers? Do they charge a fee yearly or monthly for a listing?
- Does the directory go out looking for articles and content? Or they wait for businesses to come approach them?
- Does the directory provide an editorial value add to internet users?
- Free Business Directories For the Singaporean Users:
2. Reach Out to Mentions from Other Sites
Your site, or content from your site may be mentioned somewhere else on the internet without you being aware of it. This can be found out by doing a Google search on your brand name. You can then reach out and ask for a link back to your website.
It’s as simple as that.
3. Ethical Guest Blogging for Backlinks
Matt Cutts has expressed in the recent years that guest blogging is dead. Google has increasingly decreased their weightage on links built from guest blogging.
However, many digital marketing experts, think otherwise. Guest blogging isn’t dead if it’s done sparingly and ethnically, and it’s a good strategy to build backlinks. Guest blogging the art finding influencers, bloggers and writers in your niche and start reaching out to them and building a relationship with them.
- How to Find Guest Blogging Opportunities?
Here are some ways that you can find guest blogs that you can contribute to.
You can Google:
Keyword in URL: ”write for us”
Keyword + title: “write for us”
Keyword + title: “contribute to”
Keyword + title: “submit” + URL: blog
keyword “Guest post” / keyword “Write for us”
keyword Intitle: Guest Post
keyword Intitle: Advertise
keyword “Guest*” blog
“your niche” + guest post
“your niche” + guest author
“your niche” + write for us
“your niche” + guest article
– Credits: GotchSEO
I reached out to a couple of SEO services sites in Singapore, the response I got from them is often nonchalant. I know for sure SEOs in Singapore don’t have a backlink driven culture. There’s no excuse though. The entire internet is your playbook, you can reach out to international sites, SEOs from other countries simply by adding a location qualifier in your search.
Rinse and repeat for different niches.
I personally am a huge fan of the guest blogging. Firstly, you don’t have to worry too much about creating 10X content, and then promoting it. You’re simply writing high quality content, offering it to another blog or site. You’re relieving them of the need to create content. There’s a much higher acceptance rate of guest blogging as opposed to creating 10X content, and then emailing your whole niche about it.
- Guest Submissions to High Authoritative Sites: Thought Catalogue/ Life Hacker
The submission strategies ties hand in hand with the strategy of creating awesome content, and then submitting them to highly authoritative sites such as Thought Catalogue, Life Hacker and etc.
4. The 10X Content Roadshow
The content roadshow is similar to a PR pitch. Firstly, you write high quality, researched content filled with amazing infographics that you know is the heavy weight champion of the internet.
Secondly, you then go out and put your content amongst bloggers, influencers and authorities in your niche/ or related niche of your (awesome) content. If it’s truly the heavy weight champion of the world, they’ll directly link to your content as a resource or a guide. You can also ask them to share your post on their social media profiles.
This is only doable with high quality, 10X content. Here’s an example of how I did it:
This is a strategy taken by Backlinko, an SEO authority. If you take a look at Backlinko’s strategies, his content marketing strategy can take up to weeks to create one single post. His post is also often filled with infographics, Youtube videos and copywriting tactics
If you’re targeting medium tail keywords, this strategy can work really well for you. Normally, you’ll write 10X content around ‘How Tos’ and guides. That takes a hell lot of time. However, if you want to rank internationally for highly competitive keywords, I’ll definitely recommend doing that.
5. Contact The Press and do a Press Release
You got a good story and a good angle? Why not hit the press straight up? Here’s a list of emails from the Singapore presses. I personally emailed one of the editors from Men’s Health, and I got a speedy response.
I’m not advocating doing press releases as an SEO strategy in your early stages of your business. Firstly, getting into the press is difficult. You need to be newsworthy before pitching to the press. Secondly, the press may or may not link back to you. I mean, it’s completely their choice right?
6. The Skyscraper Technique
The skyscraper technique is useful in generate backlinks and social shares that is almost guaranteed. This technique was named by Brian Dean, one of the most respected internet marketers in the world. Basically, he researches content has already lots of social shares, backlinks and search volume. The idea is to research tested and proven content. He then tracks the linking profile of the initial content using open site explorer, Majestic SEO or other link research tools.
He then goes about creating even higher quality content than the initial content that is already ranking on Google page 1. He then notifies the web profiles that are already linking to the original content that he has created a better guide, and hopefully, they’ll add a link to their post as well.
It’s basically reverse engineering your way to success.
7. Inform Your Subscribers
This is as simply as creating a newsletter campaign and then sending out newsletters notifying them with your latest blog post. Keeping your users updated on your latest content is a great way to build a relationships with your audience and they’ll may share your content on social media that’ll generate social shares and potentially backlinks.
This can only be done if you’ve built up a list of email subscribers.
8. Interview Experts
This is commonly known as the expert round up technique. When you reach out to ‘experts’ in your niche and gather expert opinion, you may request for get a link back to your site by requesting them to publish your article on their site, or writing an article that links back to your site.
9. Reach Out to Resource Pages
Resource pages are lists of resources that other sites curate to point people to other resources on the web. Think of it like a complication of one’s greatest hits.
You can get a backlink from resource pages by creating a high quality, how to guide. Resource pages normally link to how to guides as they are popular amongst their niche and are searched by potential customers. Nonetheless, this can only be done if your content is researched, and of high quality.
Outreach Mindset: Building Real Relationships
- The Free Tools to Find Emails : Hunter IO
SEO shouldn’t be an expensive art. I rely on this free tool to get email addresses of website owners.
Pop in the website and you’ll be able to find the emails listed on the site. Trick: Pick out emails that has their name attached to it. Eg. Marcus@PinkElephantconsultancy VS Info@Pinkelephantconsultancy.Com
- Relationship Building
MOZ, an SEO authority stated that building links is akin to relationship building with an actual human being instead of forcing content someone else’s throat.
When you’re sending outreach emails, don’t send be a complete robot. You don’t have to personalise all email outreaches at the beginning, however, if they do reply, you got to personalise it somehow, and not come off as a robot.
Ever received one of those annoying emails where they offer you SEO services and guaranteed Google ranks and it sounds like a robot? There you go. That’s an example of how not to do it.
Lastly, you also got to tell the people you outreach what you want them to do with your piece of content. They will not automatically 1) write an opinion piece to it 2) link to you 3) tweet, share it on social media. All of these can be done through a simple email.
I’d like to end off by saying that building backlinks aren’t an end all for SEO. Yes, backlinks probably make up 33% of your SEO success. However, there are many other factor involved such as relevant, high quality content, your unique selling proposition and other aspects of business and marketing that drives success.