Whether you’re just dipping your toes into the SEO water or you’re a content marketing veteran, you’re no stranger to link-building strategies.
Building backlinks is an integral part of content marketing, helping you improve SEO ranking and drive high-quality traffic to your website. These visitors will, in turn, engage with your content, signaling relevance to Google and further boosting your SEO in a virtuous cycle.
Yet, if you feel like you have been doing the same ol’ same ol’ for link-building and the effectiveness of your tactics has diminished, don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater by giving up on this strategy!
Here’s why you should stick with link-building and how you can invigorate your current strategy by understanding what makes Google tick and how to make backlinking work harder for your business.
The Benefits of Link-Building
Building links back to your website helps improve SEO and attract high-quality traffic by signaling relevance to search engines.
While using paid ads can get your links to the top of SERPs, it gets expensive in the long run. Meanwhile, 70 percent of searchers click on organic search results rather than paid ads. Improving your SEO will help you attract more clicks cost-effectively for long-term results.
In addition, 75 percent of searchers never scroll past the first page of search results. Improving your SEO ranking will help you get onto the first page of Google and drive more traffic.
Backlinks from high-quality sites also help you attract more visitors that are most likely to engage with your content. The increased dwell time signals to Google that your content is relevant and of high quality, which will further improve your search engine ranking.
Besides SEO, link building also has the following advantages:
- Increase visibility and brand awareness
- Improve domain and page authority
- Build credibility as a thought leader
- Exposure to other industry leaders
- Get a syndication boost to increase the reach of your content
- Receive high-quality traffic from websites that share your target audience
- Drive sales through influencer marketing.
How to Invigorate Your Link-Building Strategy
As search engine algorithms continue to evolve, so should your link-building strategy. For example, more emphasis is being put on the relevance, trustworthiness and audience engagement of a piece of content.
Your link-building strategy should cover both internal links and external links. While external links can drive more traffic to your website, internal links can help search engines better index your content while increasing engagement and dwell time to signal relevance.
Besides reaching out to authority sites, submitting your pieces as guest posts, and working with influencers to promote, what else can you do to get more backlinks?
Here’s how to bring your link-building strategy up-to-date so your SEO can stay in tip-top shape:
Create Content on Trending Topics
Keeping current on what your ideal audience is talking about can help you create content that’ll get published, read and shared.
To get the first mover advantage so your content can rank high, you should stay on top of current events, news stories, pop culture and more. Plan the content in advance so when the stories break, your content is ready to go.
Here’s how to keep your ears on the ground:
- Google Trends: Stay tuned to what’s trending in your niche and keep track of what content is getting traffic.
- Facebook: Use popular hashtags related to your industry, see what people are talking about in Facebook groups and check out events that show up on your timeline.
- Twitter: Look through the trending section to see what your audience is talking about and follow popular public figures to keep tabs on what’s being shared.
- Reddit: Explore “Subreddits” related to current events, technology, politics and pretty much anything else you can imagine. This platform is particularly great for subjects that are less “mainstream.”
Develop Share-Worthy Content
Making your content share-worthy is the best way to get it published by popular sites and shared by your audience. You can boost SEO by including relevant links back to your website in these pieces.
Here’s how to create content that will make publishers and audiences want to share your link:
- Be creative with the format so it complements the nature of the content. Some examples include cartoons, punchy listicles, interviews with influencers, interactive videos and quizzes.
- Aim for a wider audience so the content will more likely to get picked up by more platforms and shared across the web.
- Use visual content, such as images, videos and infographics to increase engagement. It also helps make your content shareable on more channels, such as Instagram and YouTube.
- Optimize the content for sharing by using an enticing title and description, set a feature image that captures attention and make sure it’s formatted to be mobile-friendly.
Repurpose Your Content Across Platforms
After you have created a piece of content, make sure it’s circulated as widely as possible and shared across multiple channels to maximize your ROI.
Of course, you can’t just cut-and-paste the same text onto different sites. However, you can repurpose the content into different formats optimized for each platform to increase engagement.
Let’s say you have published a guest post to an authority site. Here’s how you can repurpose the information and drive more traffic from different sources without getting dinged by Google:
- Turn the content into a slideshow, post it on Slideshare and include a link back to your website in the description. It can also be synched to your LinkedIn profile to increase exposure.
- Embed the Slideshare slideshow in a blog post with a written summary so search engines can index the content. You can also include relevant internal links for more SEO benefits.
- Turn the slideshow into a video with a voiceover, post it on YouTube and include a link back to your website in the description.
- Leverage the content for live streaming video, such as Facebook Live. You can share relevant links back to your site in the post.
- Break up the content into bite-sized chunks for social media posts and include relevant links back to your website.
Be Creative with Your Outreach Efforts
You can boost SEO by getting your audience to share links to your content (e.g., on social media). These backlinks will drive traffic to your website and signal relevance to search engines.
Getting influencers to share your content had been the go-to method for outreach but that’s not the only link-building tactic. Here’s how to get more people to share your links:
- Use email outreach to drive traffic to your content. Besides sending an email blast to your subscribers, you can personally reach out to partners, industry friends and authors who have mentioned you in their content.
- Post content on social media and encourage your followers to share the link. You can also reach out to your connections individually (e.g., by sending a private message).
- Include a call-to-action in the content to ask your readers to share the link.
- Make it easy for readers to share the content by adding social share buttons or click-to-tweet links.
- Run a contest in which the audience will get additional entries by sharing a link to your content (e.g., on social media).
Boost Internal Linking with Content Cluster
Internal linking signals relevance and provides context to search engines so they can index your content more effectively. It also helps visitors discover helpful information and increase their dwell time on your website.
Adding internal links in individual blog posts is the standard practice and it’s all well and good. However, if you want to supercharge this strategy, you should consider creating content clusters.
In fact, Hubspot launched a rather extensive experiment on using content clusters and found that the increase in internal links resulted in higher placement on SERPs.
Here’s how to create content clusters:
- Audit your existing content and group them by topic.
- Create a “pillar page” for each topic, which captures all the key aspects of the topic with internal links to the content clusters.
- Each content cluster will go in-depth into one aspect of the topic and include internal links to relevant articles.
Producing high-quality content is essential for SEO but it’s just one piece of the content marketing puzzle. Your content won’t be able to do what it’s supposed to do if it’s not found by your ideal audience.
Link-building is a key strategy that will not only boost your SERP placements but also increase your reach. It’ll boost your SEO ranking and drive high-quality traffic to your website.
Just like any other SEO tactics, you need to track traffic sources and analyze your data to see what works and what doesn’t in your link-building strategy.
That’s why here at Visiture, we implement a data-driven approach in our content marketing services to ensure that we’re responding to fast-evolving search algorithms, technologies, consumer interests and insights so our clients can consistently stay at the top of relevant search results.
Learn more about our SEO and content marketing services and see how we increased Tiege Hanley’s organic revenue by 126 percent through our SEO program.