Link Building Techniques

Acquiring additional inbound links is the common solution that helps solve most of the problems that SEOs run up against. To make this difficult task a little easier for you, I have compiled a list of some of my favorite link building techniques. Not all of these techniques work for all people, but the list is long enough that you can almost undoubtedly find a technique that works for your case.

Most of the problems SEOs run up against can be addressed by adding inbound links.

Start a blog

Your life is a story. Building a blog is extremely easy, and if you are able to find a way to differentiate yourself, you will have a limitless supply of link opportunities. Find something that you think other people (not just yourself) will find interesting and share it with the world. (Creating a business blog is similarly helpful if you are part of a large organization. Getting content approved adds some bureaucratic headaches, but it can be worth it if you stick with it. An honest, insightful blog about the inside of a corporation is relatively rare and is rewarded with quality links.)

Help bloggers

lessons-learned-in-mentoring-e1462376230714Bloggers are great link suppliers. It is a natural part of their job. You can tap into this by helping them find the information they need. The easiest way to do this is to find recent articles where the blogger has made a mistake and send a polite e-mail with the correction. Many times the blogger will choose to link back to you out of appreciation. Sign up for HARO (Help A Reporter Out): Similarly, you can help online reporters do their job. This service connects reporters and content producers with the people who can answer their questions. You can be the expert they are looking to interview.

Contact business partners

If you are running a business, you will undoubtedly have business partners. These partners will likely have links. Consider taking a link rather than payment for a simple task with a partner.
You can make this process easier by prov iding customers with the code to do this.

Ask customers

No one likes your products more than your customers (after all, they paid money for them). Many times these customers have websites or blogs of their own. Try including a polite request for a link in receipts and confirmation e-mails.

Ask friends and family

customer_satisfaction_survey-1024x439

Just like your customers, your friends and family likely have websites or blogs. These are some of the easiest links to acquire because the providers are likely to be more willing to help than general strangers. Find links that your competition has and request linkers to consider your site: This tactic is good for two reasons.

First, the links are easy to find with tools like HubFinder and SEOmoz PRO.

Second, these links will be considered relevant by the search engines because they are all from the same Internet neighborhood.

Write articles and submit them to content aggregators

Many services online need content. Specifically, I have heard good things about About.com. After building up a reputation at these websites, feel free to include some links to your website when relevant.

Offer to write a guest blog post

In my experience, professional bloggers always feel the need to post new content. Many times, they are willing to post other people’s guest posts to fill this need. This has the benefit of building your credibility and link profile.

Do charity work and ask for a link in return

This is a win-win situation. You get to help a charity with its website and you get a link from a trusted domain.

Code a simple calculator

Calculators are deceptively simple to code in either JavaScript or PHP. Pick an equation that you know (human years to dog years, weeks to plant petunias, time to cook the perfect turkey based on size, price of a car after depreciation, and so on), build or contract someone to build the calculator, and optimize the page so it ranks for the term. People love to link to helpful resources.

Write a how-to

Odds are you know how to do something that other people don’t. Be it sewing a button, or optimizing engines, how-tos are great link getters.

Write a tutorial: Similarly, to how-tos, tutorials are excellent link getting sources. Tutorials tend to be more technical than how-tos, which is great because more technical readers are more likely to link.

Make a screencast: Screencasts are the lazy man’s tutorial. They are easy to create (Quicktime 10 has a screen recorder built in) and even easier to consume. Also, due to their file size, they are more likely to be linked to rather than flat out copied.

Make or host a funny video:

This is easy to do and has the potential to spread virally.
NOTE Don’t host the video on Vimeo or YouTube, because you won’t get the link benefits. Instead, sign up for Amazon Web Services (relatively inexpensive cloud computing) and host it yourself. Make sure that the video is embedded on a URL you own, not one owned by Amazon. (Amazon doesn’t need any more links.)

Make or host a funny image

Making and/or hosting an image is easier than doing the same for a video. Many reasonably priced hosting plans can handle the bandwidth, and for many funny pictures, the image editing quality doesn’t matter.

Create a best-of list

Even better than creating your own picture or video content is finding the best that other people have made. This is better for two reasons. First, it is easier because you don’t have to come up with original ideas.

Second, “best-of” lists attract more links because they are more useful than a simple list of resources. Interview someone noteworthy: If you have the resources to get in contact with someone famous or someone with a particularly interesting job or experience, you have the makings of a great blog post or article.

These are great link sources because they tend to rank for the term that makes them interesting and thus drive a lot of traffic of potential linkers.

Aggregate helpful content:

Have you encountered a problem that after a lot of effort you were able to fix? If you have, post the solution online! It is surprising how many times people reinvent the wheel
simply because the solution to the given problem is not readily available.

Write an entertaining or interesting quiz

People like taking quizzes and showing off the results. Examples include the following: Which power ranger are you? What gadget are you most like? How long could you survive on a deserted island? How much is your brain worth? These types of quizzes are easy to build and are excellent link builders. (Just make sure they are relevant to your content, or you could run into penalties.)

Make an online game:

One of the best examples of a link magnet that I have ever seen is TravelPod.com’s Traveler IQ Challenge. This simple flash-based game has earned them tens of thousands of links.

Participate in the comments of important blogs:

This is an indirect link acquisition technique.

Do not post your own links in comments unless they are highly relevant and genuinely interesting. Instead, build your personal reputation with the writer and others in the community.

Go to industry events:

Linkers tend to prefer linking to people they know. Attending industry events not only puts you in front of the right people, but it helps you build your personal brand. In fact, at least half of the links to my personal website have come from mentions of me from blog posts talking about experiences at industry events.

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