Digital Marketing | MIN READ

Everything You Need to Know About SEO Link Building

Baraka Kalumba

April 30, 2022

SEO link building in-depth.

Building links is obtaining links to your website from other websites. In SEO, we refer to these as backlinks. Acquiring backlinks from high-quality websites can draw authority to your website and raise your rank in the search engine results pages (SERPs).
In this article, we’re going to dive into every aspect you need to take note of as you pursue your SEO link building such as the different strategies to use, what to do and what to avoid in great detail.
According to Google, a vital part of choosing which pages can be relevant and trustworthy is knowing if other proven websites link or refer to the content of those particular pages; therefore, it’s crucial to consider link building when setting an SEO strategy.

Why Is Link Building a necessity?

You have written a stunning piece of content, but your website is brand new and hasn’t gained any authority yet. Acquiring links from other trustworthy websites is a gateway for Google to spot your site as more authoritative. These Backlinks are votes of trust for your website.
Now that you know pages with more backlinks often rank higher, it’s essential to:
• Curate high-quality work worth linking to, and
• Utilize link building strategies to help bring in more backlinks
Since building links takes time and effort, kicking off the process of link building as soon as possible rather than later will earn you a tremendous advantage over your competitors and even more significant benefits to your website over time.

How link building works.

A great way to boost your authority in link building is to get backlinks from trustworthy, high-quality sites. Even if you have multitudes of backlinks that come from irrelevant websites and are full of spam, your site won’t rank any higher.
There are various ways to earn backlinks; these include:
• Venturing into Guest blogging
• Promotion on social media
• Manual outreach
• Targeting competitors’ backlinks
We’ll dive into these specific strategies shortly.
However, backlinks aren’t everything—high-quality content is more important.
When searching for ways to boost your rank, exploiting the power of link building could be a challenge for any beginner and experienced professional alike. Despite all this, it’s one of the most powerful tools for organic website success.

How to Successfully Build Links

Request Links
Reaching out can take plenty of effort and time with minimal reward but could be way more effective with the proper tools.
If you aim to get a backlink from a specific website you think could help boost your website or page’s authority, you will most likely need to reach out to the website owner directly to make this happen.
Hold on! Before you jump into requesting backlinks from all over the world wide web, take note of the following:
• The links you ask for should be from a website closely aligned with your brand.
• Take note of the other site’s performance and trustworthiness
• Create a well-written email before you reach out to site owners
Earn Links
To achieve a true comparative advantage through links, you should develop strategies that will enable you to earn editorial links.
Earning links calls for a notable amount of work but yields the highest results. So, prepare to invest your time and resources into earning your links. With all this, you will secure links that competitors will struggle to get.
The perfect way to get those other sites to curate high-standard, relevant links to yours is to deliver unique, relevant content quickly gaining traction on the Internet.
Writing good content always pays off: Links are often editorial votes given by choice. Therefore, the more valuable your content is, the greater the chances of other website owners will find your content beneficial to their readers and create links.

Strategies for Successful Link Building

Now let’s dive into the fun part. There are several methods for excellent link building, but some are more outstanding than others.
Below are some strategies for building healthy backlinks from high-quality websites.

Develop Linkable Assets
Linkable assets are the pieces of your content intended to attract links. The most common type of linkable asset is an infographic—it’s a great strategy to showcase original research as a graphic to those within your niche.

Furthermore, curating linkable assets can build brand awareness and grasp social media attention.

Infographics have a higher chance of getting read than full articles. So creating necessary linkable assets closes the gap for those readers who avoid reading full content, especially if you present easily comprehensible infographics to encourage backlinks and sharing of your content.
And you don’t need to be a pro graphic designer to make linkable assets. Even if you’re a beginner, you can use templates from sites like Canva or pic monkey.

Linkable assets are also a channel for referral traffic—when your content gets shared on social media, and it reaches bigger audiences.
With that said, let’s turn our focus to social media as another link building strategy.

Activate your Social Media
A straightforward way to start building backlinks is by posting your content on social media platforms. Once you’re equipped with your graphics and have linkable assets, your chances of earning backlinks increase significantly.

All this counts for nothing if you aren’t active on social media. You miss out on boatloads of opportunities to grow brand awareness.
Even if you’re fresh on social media, you can quickly start by:
• Posting news and updates on your brand
• Engaging with your followers in the comments section
• Responding whenever your brand gets mentioned
• Participating in social media conversations in your niche
Another way to stimulate engagement with your users is by using polls to start a conversation. It’s a double-sided win, as it’s also a way you can carry out audience research.

All these are good practices you can perfect to increase brand visibility on social media, leading to the ultimate goal–higher authority and backlinks.
You can also shape your social media profiles and confirm they include the link to your site in the bios.
Another proven tactic is tagging brands and influential people in your content when you mention them. If they carry out social listening, there is a big chance they will share your post or the link you share, which will aid you in generating a backlink from a profile besides your own.

Guest blogging is your friend.
Matt Cutts of Google announced the end of guest blogging in 2014, but is it done?
There’s no definitive answer. The old style of guest blogging is gone, never to be seen again; it would be a rookie mistake to publish content on any websites with low authority and lack relevance to your business to earn backlinks.

Not to worry, guest blogging can be an intelligent way to earn links if done purposefully.
While it’s not the go-to tactic, it could be fruitful to partner with a brand in your industry to deliver a case study or showcase the results of the joint research.

If you receive requests from people charging for guest posts on their website, take this as a bright red flag. Google is too advanced to miss these tactics, so it’s best to avoid such a sticky situation.
However, If you see an excellent opportunity for pairing up for a case study, begin by reaching out to the site owner and pitch your idea directly. Outreach doesn’t always work out, but it could increase traffic and backlinks if executed right.

How Do I Know If a Link Is a Good Link?

The internet boasts 1.88 billion websites, over 25 billion indexed web pages, and countless links.
So how can you see the differences between a great link and a horrible link? We’ll give you five ways to tell whether the Link is excellent.

Every Link should come from a website with content closely or even related to your topic. Looking out for relevance guides you in building excellent links.
When searching for potential link opportunities, get into character by asking yourself whether you would still go for it if the mighty Google didn’t exist or use these links as a part of its overall algorithm.
If your answer is yes, this often means it is from a website in line with your topic and a site where your audience hangs out on the internet. On the other hand, if your answer is no, that’s a clear sign that the Link isn’t relevant to your business.

There are multiple ways of checking the credibility of a website when checking the quality of a backlink. These include:
• How long the website has lasted
• If the site URL has a secure socket layer (SSL)
• Social media presence
• If there is a privacy policy present
• Is the website is biased or not
• The monthly traffic of the website
In most cases, if the site has existed for a long time, garners a significant amount of traffic monthly, has an active social media presence, and has signs to indicate the site’s security, it is likely a good link.

Link Placement
Link placement is critical because it directly influences the visibility and overall performance of the Link itself.
The suitable placement for links is in the upper body of all your content.
Readers are more likely to spot links faster at the top of the web page than at the footer, which they may not even reach. Avoid placing links in sidebars, the lower part of your content, and on the footer.

Authority Score
The authority score allows you to measure the impact of a website or a domain’s links. Usually, the greater the weight of a website’s Authority Score, the more trustworthy that domain is perceived.
On a 1 to 100 scale, the closer the score is to 100, the better it is. The impact of links as your domain’s growth continues is also based on your website’s niche.
You can use Backlink Analytic tools to check your website’s authority score while also checking the scores of referring domains to see how helpful those links are to your website.

Anchor Texts
Anchor texts are the texts you use to link from one web page to another. While you could use anchor text to give readers context to a particular page or website, Google’s algorithm uses anchor text to tell what a webpage is about and, therefore, helps in influencing rankings.
Point to note; Google’s current guidelines state that optimized anchor text violates their guidelines, and excess use is a ticket to applying manual actions.

What Link Building Tactics Should you Avoid?

In SEO link building, the aim is to please Google’s algorithm so we can clinch the top spot in the SERPs. Sadly, some tactics that earn you quick wins seem viable. First, they could hurt your site.
Here are some of the tactics you should always avoid in link building.

Buying Links
You’ll be amazed that paid link building is still typical despite being a flat out violation of Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and is termed as a link scheme just because it yields results (at first).
Earning genuine links is challenging work, and we can’t deny that. Even manual link building and the vast number of quick-win tactics still require a lot of effort to yield results.

These kinds of links are known as toxic backlinks, and it’s for your good that you avoid actively chasing them.
You could use a Backlink Audit tool to keep an eye out for any toxic backlinks pointing in your direction and even spot particular toxic markers that add to a link’s overall toxicity.
In simple terms, using paid links to increase your site rankings should be avoided.

Google Penalties
If you insist on risky tactics, you increase your risk of growing toxic links in your backlink profile. Risky tactics could earn you a Google penalty, which negatively affects your rankings.
Quick Fact; It can take several months or even years to recover from a Google penalty, so prevention is better than cure.

Like all aspects of SEO, you will need to put in effort consistently and continuously. While link building feels like it needs more time and effort than most SEO strategies, the results are worth the wait.
With enough perseverance in implementing your link building strategies, your website will improve tremendously in the long run. You won’t require to work tirelessly for links as they’ll come quickly.
Link building gives you time to focus on creating great content that other websites and brands will push to link to your site.