Link building is necessary for most websites, the operative word being “most.” Generally, there are three types of websites, established, unestablished, and big brand. Your website’s need for link equity depends on which category it falls under. For example, a big brand will have plenty of natural sources for links, so they won’t need to do much link-building, if at all.
Meanwhile, unestablished and established websites have to dedicate a little more effort to acquiring backlinks. The former likely has a small budget for link-building and needs to launch from scratch, while the latter might have processes and a budget but do not own the relationships and are paying a third party for them.
Sustainability in Link Building
Link-building isn’t simply a matter of finding websites that will connect to yours. You need to know how to avoid triggering Google’s red flags for spamming behavior or other penalties while ensuring that you get as many high-quality links as possible. Sustainability is also a crucial factor. You need to do as much work as possible in a short amount of time.
Unfortunately, many people use outdated methods in reaching out and building links. They use effortful ways to secure connections, ones that produce little to no return on investment. Thinking about your campaign and restructuring it will bring you more value down the road. Here are some practices you can use to run a link-building campaign that won’t fizzle out after a few months or make Google penalize your site.
Be Intentional in Your Outreach Efforts
Link building isn’t just about looking for a relevant site, verifying their domain rating, and sending a prospecting email. Although you will get plenty of responses if you perform these steps mechanically, you will get even more if you approach each attempt as a potential for networking and building relationships with other brands.
Focus on Individual Pages’ Backlink Profile
Look at individual pages and what you want their backlink profiles to look like. If you focus on your domain as a whole, it’ll only address domain authority. Although it’s a good guideline, it’s not prudent to base your backlink strategy on it.
It is wiser to find linking opportunities by identifying a page that matches the content you have or already plan to make. You could also pull rankings from SEMRush and other extensive indexes for URLs you find in your link tools, identify the pages that link for keywords you use, and do your outreach afterward.
There are many places to get large datasets of links besides SEMRush, like Majestic, Ahrefs, and LinkResearchTools. While these tools require you to wade into the data, but it’s better to have a quantitative basis for your strategy instead of using trial and error when emailing.
Also, basing your outreach on data gives you a jump-off point for your email. You can highlight the shared benefits you will have if your prospect links to your site.
Get Link-Worthy Ideas from Your Data
Make it easy for other companies to reach out to you. When you get a dataset, use it to generate ideas for future content. Also, don’t settle for one topic for each insight—find all the angles and stories possible. Although you’re not guaranteed to gain links for all the content you create, it’ll be good for your brand in the long term if you can come up with multiple angles for a single topic.
For example, you can create location-based content. You can use data points to identify locations throughout your city or state where specific topics will be popular. Another tactic you could try is basing your content strategy on demographics. Is it possible to use your content to target young people, older people, males, females, or people with certain careers?
Something else you can do is create new articles or update old but evergreen ones every year. You can gather data pertinent to readers this year and plug the new data in next year. This way, you don’t have to keep writing a new article—you can update existing posts and ensure that your pages stay relevant to your audience.
Having link-worthy content isn’t an active way of building backlinks, but it makes your strategy more sustainable. Since you only have so much energy to devote to acquiring links, you can create content that’s good enough to convince other websites to link to you.
Find Influencers to Work With
No matter what you sell online, you’re bound to have a healthy amount of competition. There are few incredibly unique products or services around, so you have to bank on other things like reputation and personality. People will buy what you offer if they like the story behind it. Alternatively, they will also buy things from those they consider experts. You need to find these influencers in your field.
Today, “influencer” doesn’t just pertain to models or lifestyle entrepreneurs like the Kardashians, who have millions of followers on Instagram. Anyone with a following—even a small one—who can persuade people to purchase things is an influencer. It isn’t hard to find these online personalities. Most of them are on social platforms like IG and YouTube.
Search these places for people who review services and products you offer and send them a message to see if they are open to sponsorships. Usually, they will team up with you for a fee or some form of arrangement. Although they have to disclose that you’re paying or sponsoring them to review your product, you will still benefit from airtime on their blog or channel.
Don’t Buy Links
Influencer marketing is one thing—buying links is another. Don’t acquire backlinks by purchasing them—it is time-consuming and will likely produce a low ROI. Besides being against Google’s rules, there’s no guarantee that they’ll work. Sustainability should be your focus, not quick gains, and any juice you get from backlink building will quickly run out.
Sustainable backlink-building efforts require intentionality. You cannot just pursue strategies on a whim—you need solid reasons for choosing websites to reach out to, influencers to contact, and content to write. Without a plan, you won’t know if your strategies are working or not!
Trust Ranked with your website’s backlink strategy. We incorporate backlink acquisition in our SEO strategies, providing genuine outreach services and daily backlink tracking powered by Majestic. Get in touch with the team to learn more or activate your free trial!