Whether you’re a total newbie when it comes to SEO or you’re a seasoned White Hat SEO expert, you’ve likely heard about links and their importance. Perhaps you’ve even read my other blog post about link building.
Links are still a large part of gaining and keeping good rankings in Google searches, but not all links are created equal. Keep reading to learn my top 3 do’s and don’ts of link building.
Link Building Do’s
This is the number one piece of advice I can give you on link building. By focusing on adding quality content to your site, you are more likely to generate links from other domains. Focus on making your content and your site the authority in the subject matter you are discussing, and you’ll gain quality links easier.
For more info on how to create great quality content, I suggest checking out this article about 10x content by one of my heroes, Rand Fishkin.
Support Local Organizations
If you’re going after local SEO results, getting links to your site from local organizations has a strong effect. One surefire way to get higher authority local links is from local charities or sports teams such as little leagues, high school teams, non-profit teams and races. These types of organizations typically have websites and get local news coverage, which means they get links to their site which in turn builds their domain authority.
If you’re sponsoring an organization like this, reach out to them! If you’re not, find some to sponsor! And then ask them for a link from their site. It’s much more valuable than a plaque you’re going to forget about.
Go after High Domain Authority Links
The quality of a link to your site is largely based on the trustworthiness of that site. The more trustworthy the website, the higher the Domain Authority (DA). And, when high-authority websites link to yours, those links help build your authority in turn.
So what are high DA sites? Surprisingly, most social media platforms are high DA sites. SearchWoo has a great article that breaks these down and how to correctly use them.
Another great type of high DA sites are domains ending in .gov and .edu. Links on these websites are tougher to attain, but the effect is worth the effort.
Obtaining a .gov link is time-consuming, but I have some tips you can use to try to acquire the links to your site.
- Draw attention to your website. Ways to do this include writing about a politician or writing about the government agency.
- Alternately, interview a member of the government agency (especially valuable if it’s a local one). Find an agency that is local to you, or choose one that relates to your topic/website. The more relevant angle you can find, the better.
- Market your high-quality and relevant page by contacting the official or agency and letting them know you’ve written about them. Let them know that you have this resource that they might want to link to, and send them the URL to make it easy for them to create the link. It’s a manual and lengthy process, but worth it!
Link Building Don’ts
Paid links? DANGER, WILL ROBINSON!! This is a cardinal rule of SEO. Paid links in general are something to stay away from because, in Google’s mind, they are manipulative and spammy. There are a few exceptions, but in general I’d stay far away from these.
Unless you 100% know that the site is highly reputable and uses best practices with their links, I’d just avoid paying for links altogether. If you do insist on using a paid link source, I’d strongly suggest you read over Google’s advertising and webmaster guidelines and make sure you’re compliant.
This was a very popular tactic back in the “dark ages” of SEO. It’s pretty simple: Contact another website and offer to link to their site in exchange for a link to yours. Since then, Google has gotten smarter and smarter over recent years and cracked down on people abusing this. Shady SEOs of days of yore would trade links with any and every site they could. It worked for a while, but Google has cracked down.
If you’re trading a link, make sure it’s being posted to a very relevant and reputable site. Otherwise, I’d also just avoid this strategy altogether.
This one is pretty broad, but that’s because the types of sites in question are basically anything that doesn’t relate to your subject matter. Sure, you could go get a link from a shady off-shore website that doesn’t have anything to do with your topic. But why would you?
If it doesn’t have any relevance to your topic, Google is going to view it unfavorably. The best tactic you can use is to make sure that the links you’re gaining to your site are coming from sites that relate to your topic. Stick to those, and you’re much better off.
Let Page 1 Do Your Link Building for You!
Let’s face it, link building can be work-intensive and frustrating. What is your time worth to you? If you’d rather not spend hours hunting down and earning quality links, reach out to Page 1 Solutions!
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