Five Easy Link Building Techniques That Boost Your Search Engine Rankings

Links (hyper links) are one of the key foundations of Google’s algorithm.

Larry Page, Google co-founder, came up with the idea that the more web pages that link to a web page the more relevant and important that content is. He then went a stage further and devised a scale to measure the quality and quantity of the links pointing at a page – PageRank.

Over the past 15 years, dozens of new ranking factors have been added to their complicated and well protected algorithm but ultimately the core principles of links remain. Many have written the epitaph of the link over the past 18 months as people feel Google have placed more emphasis on social signals but even the Google engineers are telling us links aren’t dead (just yet).

Great Content isn’t enough

If you have spent any time reading popular blogs on marketing then you’ve probably heard the phrase “Content is King” churned out numerous times. Content is a very important key to effective link building as it’s the currency of the web. But unfortunately the Google company line “if you build it they will come” doesn’t work.

Great content on its own won’t get discovered.

You need to tell people about it.

So how do I get links to my website?

If you are writing articles on article directory sites such as Ezine and web 2.0 properties e.g.  Squidoo just to attract links, then please stop!!! These types of links aren’t helping your website very much and you might be better investing your time and efforts into these strategies instead.

  1. Guest Blogging – reach out to bloggers and offer to write a guest article on their website. This is a win-win situation for both parties as it means you get a link and they get a day off. To find blogs to write guest posts for go to Chase the Footprint. From the drop down menu choose “Guest Blogging” and add in your keywords. For example, if I was looking for a website to write about plumbing I might enter keywords such as DIY or Home Improvement. You can also register for guest blogging communities such as Blogger Linkup or Myblogguest. In addition, to audition for a guest spot on the Micro Business Hub, click here.
  2. Run a Competition or Giveaway– partner with a popular website to offer an exclusive prize to their readers. The more exciting the prize the more likely it will be you will be able to get some links from some very high traffic blogs.
  3. Ask people you already know – you know that guy you chat to every week at your local business networking group, does he have a website? He does, then why haven’t you asked him already for a link to your website? If you wanted you could offer him a discount code he could put on his site for his customers too…
  4. Press Releases – I’m not talking about those really low quality “Free” press release websites, but the high quality paid services. If you have a big announcement to share with the world then write a press release and get it out there.
  5. Get Interviewed – are you an expert? Do you want to get some free press coverage? If you do then sign up to Help a Reporter Out, it’s free and if a journalist is looking for someone for a sound bite or interview you will be able to offer your specialist knowledge (in exchange for a link, of course).

If you want inspiration for a few more link building strategies (131 to be precise) then you can check out this article from Search Engine Watch. I’m not going to lie to you; link building done right isn’t easy. It takes time and a lot of rejections. But it all boils down to two key principles make the news and/or make friends.

What’s your link building strategy? How do you get quality back links to website? What juicy tips can you share or what questions do you have? Please have your say in the comments below.

micro business actionToday’s Micro Action

Link building is a key element of your SEO strategy. Pick one of the five easy link building ideas outlined in this post and try it out for yourself (and try the others when you have time :-).

Chris Dyson

Chris Dyson is a Freelance SEO Consultant and currently blogs about Social Media and SEO at Triple SEO.

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  1. Absolutely agree with Chris!. It’s time to change the mindset of what a link is about!. We need to think more about the engagement and buzz we can create around our content rather than thinking about number of links. This is where some are still failing around “content marketing”. They don’t see the benefit from 3-4 well written engaging articles, or the right product review on the right blog, or the benefits of a competition when they can get 300 directory links, 300 social bookmarks, and 100 Article submissions for less than £100.

    Search is changing as Google moves more towards the knowledge graph of search where related items are more important. The quality, the engagement and the trust of the sources talking about you in now a vital part. If you are not getting this shift then you really going to be a loser in the future of search.

    • It’s a shame too many small businesses base their SEO / link building service providers purely on price.

      With manual penalties being handed out by Google for spammy/paid links on a regular basis and sites with too many poor quality links (read 300 directory submissions for £50) having their web pages pushed down the search results by algorithms (Penguin), it really does pay to do your research.

      If you do buy these cheap link packages be aware that it’s going to cost you 10+ times that amount to get those links removed by someone who knows what they are doing, just to get your website back where you started.

  2. As a writer the quality of content is really important to me. The web is so saturated with “stuff” that to stand out and get noticed your writing has to be interesting, relevant and useful – otherwise your audience will find it elsewhere.

    But Chris you’re totally right. Great content by itself won’t work. You need to get found. I think guest blogging is a great strategy and whilst it does provide links, it’s also about building those relationships with people and getting known by a community.

    The Hub has grown in only three months largely because of the connections we’ve made. But there’s another point. In micro business when you are often working by yourself, it’s the connections and relationships you make with other people that can lead your business to success.

    And yes it’s a cliche – but you do get what you pay for 🙂
    Georgina El Morshdy recently posted..About the Micro Business HubMy Profile

  3. Chris:

    You’ve done a great job here summarizing some very basic (i.e. simple) things small businesses can do to get their websites ranked and getting traffic. Guest blog posts are especially effective.

    Travis Van Slooten
    Travis Van Slooten recently posted..4 Simple Ways a Local Veterinarian Uses TwitterMy Profile

  4. Nice post, for me the most effective out of the 5 is guest posting. No matter what niche your are in you should be able to build a nice list of relevant websites that you could write for. It’s then up to you to build a relationship with that site owner and get a guest post.

  5. Chase Your Footprint is a tool I haven’t seen before. Thanks.

    (PS. I’ve just noticed that there is now a follow up comments notification, so The Hub responds to feedback. Thank you)
    Rosie Slosek recently posted..Save 2%: don’t be in the workhouse when you retireMy Profile

  6. Absolutely right Chris! I have started to think “link building” as “relationship building” now. It is not only about just links anymore.
    Joshua recently posted..Mobile and Desktop SEO – Differences at a GlanceMy Profile

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