Why does it look like search engines prefer the posts of some bloggers to others? Why does it seem almost improbable to outrank these sites even with better content and perfect on-page SEO? The secret to SEO success here is having a proper link building plan to generate high authority backlinks that drive organic visitors to your content through improved search rankings.
In the following, I want to touch on several points surrounding the why and how of link building and offer suggestions on how to create your own link building plan to ensure your posts rank and generate enough search traffic. But first, let’s have a look at the infographic below.
What is Link Building?
Link building is the art of getting other bloggers/site owners in related niches to link to your site in order to increase your search ranking. According to Brian Dean of Backlinko “Link building is the most important (and challenging) SEO skill. Actually, it’s a culmination of several different skills: you need to master Content Creation, Sales, Programming, Psychology and good old-fashioned Marketing if you want other people to consistently link to your site.”
Search engines don’t care if you got the best content in the world on your website if there are no other sites linking to your content. You need authority sites linking to your site, backlinks from high domain authority sites. However, relevancy is key. You never make money with just traffic, you make money with targeted traffic because they are the ones most likely to convert and become a sale on your site. In trying to achieve this, you really only need to focus on three of the skills Brian mentioned to do well in your link building endeavour: Content Creation, Psychology and Marketing.
3 Key SEO Skills to Focus On
1. Content Creation
Link building will be very difficult if your content is not of a high quality and useful to your audience. The term high quality can be relative, but what about useful? Nobody wants to link to or associate with an average or low quality content. So you’ve got to get to work. Once you have useful and detailed content, then you make it easier for other bloggers to want to link to you.
- Use Buzzsumo to research content that has already gone viral in your niche. For example, if you were in the dog training niche; you could type in “dog obedience” in the Buzzsumo search bar and it would pull up different titles of posts with that keyword that went viral. This would give you an understanding on what kind of posts you should write.
- Then use Hubspot’s Blog Topic Generator to get ideas of what you can title the post you have decided to write.
- Use linkbird to research what other bloggers have written on the topic and determine to add your own angle to the topic. If there’s nothing distinct and unique about your post, why should anyone link to it? Determine not to be a me-too blogger – Find your voice and make it loud.
Why should anyone be interested in your post? What problem has your post identified? Have you solved that problem with your post? Did you solve it in such a way that a six-year-old old could understand it? Review these points while writing your posts and you will most likely come up with a post that wil resonate with your audience.
Link building is all about marketing. A big mistake to make would be to think that because you have created a quality post that bloggers will just start linking to it and traffic will start increasing. You’ve got to market your new quality post to bloggers in your niche; it’s called Blogger Outreach. But you should not just collate email addresses of bloggers and start telling them to link to you! Some bloggers might get offended and regard it as spam. Instead give something first before you expect to receive.
Here’s How I do Blogger Outreach
Infographic is one powerful way to get backlinks as people love to share it but it can be both expensive and time-consuming to make. So when I pitch bloggers to link to my post, I offer that I’d be interested to build an Infographic for one of their most popular post. (If you run a fairly popular blog and you’d be interested to strike such a deal with me, you can contact me 😉 ). You see, all of a sudden they don’t see my email as spam, but realize that I’m trying to build a relationship, that I’m giving something valuable in exchange.
I understand that you may not have the budget to always create Infographics for your prospective link partners, but there are other things you could do:
- Share their posts and be consistent in doing this.
- Write thoughtful comments on their posts, if you do this, overtime they’d notice you and check out your blog to reciprocate.
- Link to them first; it’s way easier to approach them if you have linked to them first.
You can get creative to find more value you can bring to the table. But bear in mind the dangers in trying to go for quantity rather than quality in building links, i.e. building backlinks too fast, or from irrelavant or low quality sites, and getting too many of the same kind of links (too many comment links too fast for example, always try to diversify your link portfolio).
Here’s How Adrienne Smith Does Successful Blog Commenting
My good friend Adrienne Smith enlightened me to the benefits of blog commenting as part of relationship marketing. She commented on 5 blogs per day 5 days of the week and in 3 short months, her blog became popular and she crafted a niche for herself, today she’s a thought leader, with her own tutorial on how to become a blog commenting superstar, go read it.
Use the free tool DropMyLink to find blogs out there that give do-follow links, you could even find .edu and .gov domains that give comment do-follow links. I recommend you model after Adrienne by commenting on 5 blogs in your niche daily; see the comments as mini-blog posts, make it useful and a bit detailed. Seek to add value to the post, if you know an angle to the post that the blogger didn’t cover; that’s your time to shine. People would notice that and would click on your link to check you out on your blog. That’s the way to do blog commenting.