By In: Content Marketing, Search Engine Optimization
By Karli Jaenike
When a credible website links to your page, Google considers it a favorable vote for your website. Despite frequent Penguin updates, various studies performed by leading SEO influencers such as Moz, SEMrush, and Backlinko prove that backlinks are still a strong ranking factor in Google’s algorithm.
There are many ways to build links for your website, but not all link-building tactics are equally efficient at getting you high-quality backlinks. Google’s algorithm can spot low-quality links, and that’s why your link-building efforts should focus on getting links from relevant, high-authority websites.
Here are 10 foolproof link-building tactics that can help you get high-quality backlinks the way Google likes it.
Even though Google discourages guest blogging, it’s one of the most effective link-building tactics. But, the old ways of guest posting crappy content on a crappy website are long gone. Google still rewards guest posting links, but only if you do it the RIGHT way.
Follow these simple tips to make sure Google bots don’t hurt your ranking.
Link building through guest posting is a simple three-step process.
For example, I wrote a guest post for Small Business Bonfire. Note the link to my website in the author bio on their website.
Interactive infographics allow users to interact with data and information in a unique way. They serve as a strong link bait and maximize user experiences on different devices due to their flexible design.
For example, this infographic from Information is Beautiful has received 16.7K backlinks from 864 live referring domains.
Link building through infographics requires careful planning because not all markets are receptive to them. Make sure your infographic has valuable information backed by research and statistics. Once your infographic is live, share it on social media and reach out to the influencers in your niche. If you’ve chosen a topic of audience interest, they’ll be happy to link to your content.
Here’s a template you can use to pitch your interactive infographic for infographic link building:
Hey [First Name],
I recently stumbled across your article [custom] and [comment/compliment]. Since you often post about [custom], I thought you might enjoy this piece.
It covers [short introduction].
You can see it here. [URL to infographic source]
If this feels like a good fit for [website name], I’d be thrilled if you shared. I’d be happy to write you a custom introduction and/or provide an embed code if that helps make it easier.
All the best,
Case studies are a way to present qualitative research that outlines goals, steps employed to achieve those goals, and the actual results. For example, this case study from Outbrain discusses Nestle’s native video campaign and its outcome.
Case studies can earn you organic links because they analyze real-life examples, determine what works and what does not, and what kind of realistic results you should expect from a strategy.
Just make sure to plan your case study and back it up with reliable statistics and facts. Here are a few ways you can create a compelling case study and earn links through it.
Once your case study is live, reach out to niche influencers. Briefly mention the benefit of your case study for their audience and invite them to share it with their audience or link to it.
People love statistics because they make information reliable, concrete, and comparable. Data-driven content attracts links by the dozen because collecting data isn’t easy. So whenever people want to make a point, they look for data and link to it to make their opinion reliable.
For example, Forbes claimed that data is the new oil and backed their claim by linking various supporting statistics. Without data, their claim would hold no value. Similarly, this sleep study has earned the CDC a massive 8,000 backlinks from multiple websites.
You can run Google surveys to collect data or pull statistics from third-party sources. Then you can present these findings meaningfully through charts, graphs, and interactive maps.
Broken link building (BLB) is another old trick in the book that still works like a charm. The process is simple:
You can find broken links through LinkMiner, which is a free tool. Or else, you can use Ahrefs’ Content Explorer to find a list of broken resources.
Now choose the broken pages with the highest number of backlinks, recreate that resource, and link away.
Here’s the template you can use for outreach:
Hi [First Name],
I was recently reviewing your [URL to Resource Page]. While there, I noticed that you had broken links, including [title]. I thought you might like to know, given the level of detail on your page.
I also would like to suggest a new [URL to your resource]. [Custom intro of your resource].
If you think it is a valuable resource for your audience, I’d love it if you would add it to your list of resources.
Have a great day!
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If you’re an authority in your niche, people might mention you, quote your content, or use your images without adding a link to your website. You can convert all of these mentions into valuable links simply by contacting these people.
You can use Google Alerts to monitor the web for your brand mentions. It’s a powerful tool that is free and easy to set up. Simply enter terms related to your brand, such as your name, website name, and other branded keywords.
Fill out the form to set your preferences, and you’re good to go. You’ll receive notifications each time you’re mentioned on the web. Check whether the mention is linked to your website or not, and if it’s not, write the website email using the following template:
Hey [First Name],
I was checking out [website name] today and noticed that you mentioned us on [Post Name].
Thank you for the support!
I noticed you haven’t linked to our site. It would be of great value to your readers if you add a link from where they can get more information about the subject.
Here’s the link you can use: [URL].
Have a good day!
Link building by piggybacking off your competitors’ success is the most efficient way to snag some high-quality links in no time. You can save time and resources by letting your competitors find high-authority websites in your niche that link to websites like yours. Here’s a simple way you can do that:
For example, if you’re a content marketing agency, you can check out backlinks for another content marketing agency, such as “brafton.com,” which occupies first place in the SERP for a high-level keyword. Plug it in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer, and you’ll get that other company’s entire backlink profile. Now you can quickly contact the same websites and offer to create content for them.
It isn’t unusual to find an old, crappy piece of content with an insane number of backlinks. Most of the time, these articles and blogs are old and outdated. Another of the most effective link-building tactics you can try is to create a better resource and capture all the links pointing to the old content.
For example, I have an excellent article on the benefits of content marketing. I searched Ahrefs content explorer for the same term and found that the blog in the screenshot below has 96 referring domains. I checked out the article and confirmed that my content is far superior to that one.
From Ahrefs, I can download the entire list of domains pointing out to this blog and contact those sites to offer my article as a better alternative.
Different people learn and consume content differently. Some are visual learners; others prefer audible or written content. But most content on the internet is in one or the other content form. Most videos and podcasts have no transcripts, whereas most written blogs and tutorials have no visual content to accompany them.
That gap holds an excellent opportunity for you to create quick quality content and snag links from high-authority blogs and influencers in your niche, another one of the most effective link-building tactics you can try. The process is simple:
Google loves accessible content, and it pays to make your content available in as many types as possible. That’s why the content owner will be happy to share your formats and link to them. It means you not only get a backlink but a ton of referral traffic as well.
For example, Ross Hudgens from Siege Media transcribed a video by Matt Cutts, the former head of search quality at Google, so people could benefit from the transcript. Then Hudgens let Cutts know through Twitter, and sure enough, Cutts linked to the transcript on Siege Media’s website. That’s a massive win because Matt Cutts has thousands of followers.
Here’s an email template you can use:
Hey [First Name],
I was checking out [website name] and loved your article on [title]. [custom about the content].
I created a [asset type] to accompany the [content type] in case people prefer that format.
If you wish to add it to your [custom], You can find it here: [URL to the content]
Thanks for the valuable article!
Have a nice day!
Being included in roundups with other influencers in your niche creates a strong relevancy signal to Google that you’re a reliable figure in your industry. Crowdsourced posts only require a few minutes of your time, but in return, you can get a quality backlink, tons of referral traffic, and the opportunity for future backlinks.
There are three ways you can get included in crowdsourced posts:
If you publish high-quality content, roundups will be glad to feature you. You can find popular roundups in your industry through a manual Google search with the help of Ahrefs SEO Toolbar. Apply the filter to show results from the last year to get the list of active roundups.
Once you’ve created a relationship with the bloggers, they can feature you exclusively in their podcasts or vlogs.
Here’s the template of the email you can send to the prospects:
Hey [First Name],
My name is [your name] and I’m [designation] of [company]. I follow your [roundup name] roundup frequently—[custom sentence about the last roundup].
Since you post the roundup [weekly, monthly, quarterly], I’d like to pitch my piece of content for consideration in your roundup.
[Custom intro of your content and how it will benefit the website owner’s audience]
If interested, you can check it out here: [URL]
Let me know what you think.
Have a good day!
According to Orbit Media, “ego baiting is a web marketing tactic involving mentioning a person in a positive way in a blog post or other content with the intention of having that person promote the post, typically by sharing it through social media.”
If you wish to attract links from industry influencers, you can get their attention by mentioning them in your content.
Make a list of the industry experts you wish to connect with. Now come up with a topic of audience interest and contact the influencers for their expert opinion. Publish the post and inform the experts about it. Typically you won’t need to request a link back from them. They’ll be glad to share your roundup and link to it if they like your content.
It also opens up the possibility for future link exchanges and collaborations. Once you develop a relationship with an influencer, you can interview them exclusively. This will allow you to tap into their audience and attract new readership and open up new link opportunities to your content.
There’s no shortage of link-building tactics, but not all techniques are equally effective. These link-building strategies will get you the highest-quality backlinks for a stellar backlink profile.
Additionally, all these link-building tactics also will establish your authority in your niche and attract referral traffic, broadening your reach and influence in your industry.
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Post by: Karli Jaenike
Karli Jaenike is a content marketer and founder of content + SEO collective JuiceBox. With over 10 years experience in the marketing industry, she’s worked with brands large and small across many industries to grow organic traffic and reach new audiences. She writes on everything from marketing and SEO to travel and real estate. On the weekends, she loves to explore new places, enjoy the outdoors, and have a glass or two of vino!
Connect with me on LinkedIn.