Most people who own websites know that getting links from other websites to their own, is a truly important factor for appearing high up in search engine results. Over the years, this has led to all kinds of link building strategies… some good, and some bad.
Before 2012, people just tried to get as many links as possible to their websites. They didn’t care where those links came from, or whether they were even topically relevant to their own sites. Some even engaged in buying links. Their philosophy was, “the more, the better!”
Then, in 2012, Google started clamping down on all these link building activities. Google created a new algorithm that could figure out when a website was engaging in link building activities merely for the sake of building links to improve their website rankings. Google started penalizing those sites, and they lost their positions in search engine results.
These days, link building needs to be done correctly, or you will be wasting your time, or even worse, hurt your website.
The Golden Rule: Think value. When considering a link, ask yourself, “will the content on the page that I am linking to, offer my visitors additional value on the topic that they came to my website for?” The same goes for requesting a link from another website to yours. If the answer is “yes,” do it.
Bad Link Building Strategies
Here are some link building strategies to avoid:
- Don’t engage in link exchange schemes where you link to websites with topics that are unrelated to the topic of your site.
- Don’t buy links from other sites. This is a huge no-no!
- Don’t list your website on link farms or low-value directories whose only reason for existence is to allow websites to link to each other.
- Don’t go around to as many blogs as you can find and post crappy comments with the only purpose of getting a link back to your site. This is known as comment spam!
Good Link Building Strategies
Now that you know what not to do, let’s look at some things that you should do:
- Create really good content on your site. If your content is so good that it offers great value to visitors, other website owners will want to link to your website because it gives their own visitors additional value too. To me (and to Google), this is the most important thing to do.
- If you exchange links with other websites, make sure that there is a good reason to do so. The topic of the other site must be related to the topic of your site. The other site must also have good content. This takes us right back to the golden rule above.
- Find blogs that are topically related to your site. If you have a comment to make on one of the articles there, make sure that it is a good comment that adds value (there’s that word again!) to the discussion.
These link building strategies will take you a long way. Remember, be patient. Link building takes time, and it is an ongoing process. If you take your time and focus on value, you should do well.
PS. Do you have any additional link building tips, or something to add to the link building strategies above? Tell us in the comments…