Link building: What is it and why is it crucial?
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Do you want to rank your website on the first page of search results? Then it’s crucial that you know what link building is and how to do it right.
More than 40% of the reason why websites rank well in search engines lie in the links.
In this article, we will provide an easy to read summary of the best strategies for earning high quality links to your site.
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Below, you will learn why creating such partnerships and exchanging links is highly beneficial to both parties.
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What is link building and why does it matter?
Backlinks, also known as external links or inbound links, are HTML hyperlinks that point from one online page to another.
Essentially, link building is the process of getting other websites to link back to yours.
Link building is one of the things that smart business owners and digital marketers are after because it drives referral traffic and increases your website’s authority.
It works similarly to real-life reputation. Imagine you ask several people who don’t know each other which the best restaurant in town is, and they all say the same. Then you’re more likely to visit this restaurant and trust it is the best. In the online world, the more separate links pointing to your site you get, the more it will be trusted by search engines and thus ranked higher.
Are you looking for link building opportunities?
We are looking to partner with blogs and informative websites so that we can:
- inform travellers about their air passenger rights;
- provide them with useful information about their safety when travelling;
- provide great tips on how to travel stress-free and more conveniently;
- offer smart tips on how travellers can reduce their expenses and find amazing deals;
- provide information about interesting places one should visit; etc.
Do you want to become our partner so that we can exchange useful information as well as links? Contact us now at [email protected] !
Link building: How to do it correctly?
If your link building strategy is to pay to get as many backlinks as possible from new and/or suspicious sites, think again.
Earning links from big, reputable websites is difficult but is much better than those from shady websites. You should know that Google could even penalize you for buying links.
If you care about the long-term success and reputation of your web page (and business), it’s better to stick to white-hat SEO practices (as opposed to black-hat ones) such as natural link building.
Here, we will discuss different strategies you can try.
Boost external link building
Here is how to get others to link to you:
- Create good content and promote it
You need to provide some unique and high-quality content so that people naturally want to share and reference it (and thus link to it). Infographics, for example, are insanely popular since they are attractive, easy to read and make it more likely for others to want to share them.
However, it won’t work if you simply post an article and then wait for users to accidentally find it. You need to actually promote your content on different channels so that it reaches as many readers as possible. Be active on social media - share new posts, images and updates.
- Use resource links from trusted sites such as Forbes.
If you can even create bigger resource articles, go for it - you’ll get more backlinks.
- Ask friends and partners to link to you
It’s easy to ask people you know to link to your website. However, make sure that their blogs and sites are relevant to the content they link to. It’s important that you are in the same industry or niche, or at least similar ones. Otherwise, you won’t gain much from their links.
- Connect with influencers
Many marketers now use influencers to review and mention their products or services. Find popular bloggers or social media influencers who are relevant to your niche to link to your site.
Focus on internal link building
Don’t forget that internal link building is just as important if you are trying to improve search engine rankings for some of your pages.
What’s great is that you have full control over this process because you are the one who places links in your blog posts to the rest of your own posts. This means you determine the following elements:
- What anchor text to use;
- Which page to point the anchor text at;
- Whether the quality and content of the linking page is high.
These are major ranking factors - here is why:
- The anchor text is one of the most important things search engines look at when ranking a page. For example, if someone links to us using text like “SkyRefund”, it won’t help us much, but if they use the keyword phrase “delayed flight compensation”, this will help us rank highly for that phrase.
- Often people would link to your homepage but this makes it difficult for individual pages to rank high. It’s better to link to more specific pages that you would want people to land on.
- The quality of the link page is also crucial. Links from questionable sites don’t count nearly as much as those from reputable pages.
If you optimize your internal links right, you will certainly boost your ranking - for free!
But that’s not all - read on to learn more essential tips for effective link building.
Use guest blogging
More and more marketers and business owners realize the power of blogging. HubSpot reports that businesses with blogs generate an average of 97% more inbound links and 55% more site visitors. Guest blogging has also become incredibly popular.
But how can you best take advantage of guest posts?
- Look for blogs where the owner as well as the readers will be more likely to share your post on social media.
- Find blogs that already rank high - they’ll bring you more value. You can find them by simply googling the subject you want to write about.
- You should carefully study the chosen blog’s audience, popular posts and user experience so that you can write a relevant, valuable piece of content.
- You also need to know what your goal is in advance (e.g., getting more subscribers) so that you find the best site for that purpose and write your guest post with that in mind. Think strategically.
Find broken links
Search for broken links and reach out to the site owner, offering them to replace it with your link (if it’s relevant, of course). This strategy works great if you don’t have time to write guest posts or content for your blog.
Nofollow and follow links - know the difference
“Nofollow” is a link attribute that indicates to search engines that the linking page would rather not give its vote to the page that it is referencing. Normally, Google doesn’t count votes from “nofollowed” links, but some may still influence your rankings.
You want to be building “followed” links because they have the most value. However, if you have an opportunity to get a “nofollow” link from a relevant reputable page, don’t miss it - it’s still a very good link.
Don’t underestimate link placement
Where you place the link also plays a role. In general, links placed in the content will get more clicks than those in the footer or the sidebar.
Besides, readers are more likely to follow a link at the beginning of the article rather than the end.
Finally, it’s best not to overdo it. If you have too many links on your page, they will compete with one another and confuse users.
Always keep an eye on your competitors
Have a look at your competitors’ backlinks. What are they doing right? How are they ranking better than you? Perhaps the answer is in the links they get.
To check your competition’s backlinks, here is what to do:
- Identify your major competitors. It’s not difficult to determine who they are, but you can also use a professional SEO tool like SEMRush for that purpose. Go to SEMrush, type your main keyword and press Search. The results show the websites that rank highly in Google’s organic search for this specific keyword.
- Then go to Link Explorer, enter one of the URLs you found on SEMRush and click the button. Analyze the number of links and referring websites.
It is not necessary for a site to have many backlinks to rank at the top. More important is the quality of the links and the authority of the domain name. That’s why it shouldn’t be surprising if your competitor who is ranking higher has only 2 or 3 links.
Once you know what strategy works best for your competitors, it’s time to get to work.
If they have several links from blogs, then guest blogging benefits them - and probably will benefit you too.
If their links come from corporate sites, they are most likely earned through outreach and networking, so you should put more effort there.
If the links are from reputable sites like CNN or Forbes, they are most probably paid placements.
Take care of your links
Your job doesn’t end with the successful earning of a backlink. You should also check regularly to see if the link is still working.
There are two ways of preserving your links.
- Unfortunately, links don’t last forever. The page that is linking to you might get deleted or updated and your link might get lost. That’s why it’s a good idea to monitor your link profile and get alerts when a link of yours disappears. That way you will be able to act quickly and contact the owner of the page to try to get your link back on.
- You should also monitor your own website and fix 404 pages that contain links - either restore or redirect these pages.
To sum up
Now you know what link building is and why it is so important for website owners. You have learned the best strategies that all successful marketers and business owners implement.
Link building is not an easy and quick process but if you are patient, you will be happy with the results. The more links that you manage to earn from relevant, high authority websites, the better you’ll rank on search engines. This will then result in more traffic, subscribers, sales, or whatever your goal is.
Take the first step now: If you want to become SkyRefund’s partner and exchange relevant useful information about travelling, passenger rights and more, don’t hesitate to contact us at [email protected] !