This is the first of a series of articles on how to improve your website’s Search Engine Optimization. The better your SEO, the higher you rank in the search engine results, inevitably resulting in higher traffic on your website. While there are number of ways to do that, we will be focusing today on one of the main tasks – to build backlinks.
For those of you not aware what this is, backlinks are links directed to your website. The way search engines work backlinks are an important indication of your website’s popularity and importance. Your site will be considered much more relevant in a search query if number of websites link to it.
I will strongly advise you to keep it natural. Do not resort to shady backlink building methods such as spamming forums and blogs, abusing wiki websites, buying text links from website owners and brokers. While you can achieve a short term gain, chances are you will eventually get caught and banned from major search engines.
Another important aspect of backlinking is quality. A bunch of links anywhere won’t help much. You need to gain authority in your niche and provide quality relevant content to the search engine users. A link coming from a page with unrelated content is considered less relevant, thus resulting in a registered bounce off your page. The more your content is related the higher the quality of your backlinks the better you rank in the search engine results. Sometimes 10 quality backlinks from reputable websites are stronger than 100 unrelated links from weak websites with bad reputation. Quality is crucial aspect of link building.
Let’s get down to business:
1. Create interesting quality content
Be useful! If you are having a Hosting Review Website, make sure you have the most detailed, helpful and credible content on the internet. If you do it right, people are more likely to share it around in forums, blogs or their own websites.
2. Look out for the trends
Follow the trends and come up with a soon-to-be-important topic. Everyone wants to know what would the next hot thing be. When something new comes up, make an extensive well written review of it and people will surely share it. Make sure you give people what they actually want. If you know your niche well, it shouldn’t be too big of a problem.
3. Create How-to guides.
Make a step by step, easy to understand guide in a timely manner and you will easily harvest a large number of backlinks. The power of How-to is so strong, a number of large websites have specialized in it, having tens of thousands of links back to them e.g. eHow.com, Wikihow.com, Instructables.com and others.
4. Guest blog
This is one of the most effective tactics to build backlinks. Establish yourself as a specialist in a particular field and write articles for reputable blogs. If you provide quality content you will be given an author bio where readers can learn more about you and a link back to your blog.
5. Comment on blogs
Commenting on blogs is easy and could turn out to be a useful backlink building tool. Whenever you post a comment, make sure it is relevant to the article; otherwise you risk your comment being removed and even get your website under search engine suspicion. Become a regular user and provide valuable comments. Make your picture clickable link to your blog or website and backlinks will start coming up in not time.
6. Write articles
Similar to guest blogging, writing articles can be quite a tool to build backlinks. Write a quality piece of information and upload it to a free article directory. Many of them have bad reputation, but few are definitely worth submitting, such are: Ezine Articles, Go Articles or Article Dashboard. Those websites review all articles manually and there is really no point in spamming useless information. If you take your time doing it right, you will get a high quality link in return.
7. Post on forums
Become an active contributor to a large forum and make a good use of your forum signature. Ensure that you are writing mostly in sections relating to your blog or site content relevant to your link in a search engine query. Not all forums allow links in the signature, so look for one that does.
8. .gov and .edu backlinks
Try to get links from as many .gov and .edu websites. Though officially Google denies the heavier weight of those, SEO experts agree that they are indeed considered more reliable and with better quality than .com or .net domains.
What not to do!
Now that we went through some of the great ways to build links back to your website, there few things you should have in mind while backlinking.
- Do not rush things! – Building backlinks takes time, if you build a lot of them in no time, it would seem unnatural to the search engine. Unnaturally fast backlinking may lead to the suspicion that your website is created by a cheat bot and not a human. Sometimes you may get away with it, sometimes you may write great post and generate 200 links in few days without consequences, but try not to rush things too much in general.
- Avoid bad neighborhoods. – Try to link to as many reputable websites as possible and avoid those that host questionable or harmful content. Truth is, you cannot fully control who links back to you, but try to stay away from them as much as possible.
- Don’t link exchange too much. – You can always add a link to your resources page or blog, but try not to overdo it. Search engines nowadays have techniques to recognize link exchanges and may not take the links into account when ranking your site.
Backlinking can greatly improve your search engine position, but it requires time and effort investment. You can always take the easy way of buying text links, however the natural way provides much better and less risky results. Make sure you give people what they need and that your links are related to your website content and you are already on the right track becoming a top ranking website.
What are your methods to build backlinks? We would love to hear about it!