So you’re ready to start a link-building campaign to boost your Domain Authority score and your search results rankings. Before you start to reach out to relevant content creators or website who may want to work with your business, ask yourself: what content would users want to link back to in the first place?
Some content formats generate more backlinks than others. By creating high-quality content that continues to be relevant to creators in your industry, you will be able to sit back and watch backlinks roll in for months to come.
The Benefits of Backlinks
Why are we focusing on generating backlinks, anyway?
Backlinks don’t just give users an opportunity to visit your page. Backlinks show search engines that your page is one worth referencing and visiting. When Moz calculates Domain Authority scores, for example, it looks at a variety of link-related metrics. The more websites Moz can find that link back to your website, the higher your score will be.
The idea behind backlinks is to demonstrate which websites are referenced online. When we add a link back to Hubspot with a statistic about blog posts or content marketing, we are referencing Hubspot and giving readers the chance to learn more about the statistic or idea that is referenced. Backlinks provide context and a logical step in the journey to learning desired information.
When more backlinks lead to your website, Google and Moz recognise your website as an authority that provides context and unique information that users might find interesting. This is why writing content is a top strategy for generating backlinks.
Quick Note About Backlink Strategies
Writing high-quality content that is relevant to users and includes backlinks is considered a “white hat” SEO strategy. This is an ethical way to introduce users to your website and show Google, Moz, and other softwares that your website is an authority in your industry.
Unfortunately, not all businesses or even digital marketers stick to ethical backlink strategies. The following “black-hat” strategies may result in penalties and lowered rankings from Google:
- “Cloaking” content so it appears different to users than it does to search engines
- Adding backlinks to third-party websites through security flaws
- Stuffing and hiding keywords and backlinks so search engines will pick them up, but users will not
Even trading links is considered a questionable strategy if it is done solely for the sake of “tricking” Google and Moz and generating useless backlinks. When you are reaching out to websites or content creators who can provide backlinks to your website, be cautious of any of these practices.
Creating Content for Backlinks
The best way to create a content strategy that will bring more users to your website and through the buyer’s journey is to write high-quality content. Notice that we didn’t mention writing more content. A single blog post that provides unique and informational content to users is more useful than five posts that repeat the same thing you have seen on every other website. When you are adding any of the following content to your overall content marketing strategy, consider how you can make this content unique and worthy of generating backlinks.
Guest posts allow you to reach a new audience of website visitors who have already developed a loyalty for the website. All your team needs to do is reach out to the websites where you want to submit a guest post, write the post, include relevant backlinks.
You can reach out to businesses or thought leaders with blogs for guest posting, but you can also create guest posts for websites like:
- Huffington Post
- Wall Street Journal
How to Generate Backlinks with Guest Posts: Add them yourself! Different websites may have specific requirements about how many backlinks you can add or where you add them (they know what you are trying to do, after all.) Most sites will at least offer you the opportunity to add a backlink in your author bio, if not throughout the content itself.
There are many different types of blog posts and ebooks that you can create, but not all of this content will be relevant in a few months. As an SEO agency, we understand that content may become irrelevant due to updates in the Google algorithm or other digital marketing channels. Content that comments on updates and news in your industry has its place, but must be balanced out with “evergreen content” that remains relevant for months or years.
We go more in-depth about creating sustainable and ROI-boosting evergreen content in one of our previous blog posts.
How to Generate Backlinks with Evergreen Content: This is an exception to the link-trading rule. Your business may already get emails about your blog posts or current archive of evergreen content. If these websites want to link back to your website because your content is relevant, great!
Evergreen content is more likely to be recognised as quality content, even after the content has been on your website for a few months. Before you publish this type of content, create a plan for distributing it through social media and other channels. The more you share evergreen content, the more opportunities you give users to share your content. High-quality posts that rank may be linked as similar creators write posts and use your content as research or references.
Keep these possibilities in mind while you are writing evergreen content. As you create content, ask yourself:
- Are these insights unique to our experiences?
- What will users gain from this knowledge in three, six, or twelve months?
- How does this content provide basic knowledge for related topics and questions?
Let’s go deeper with one of these questions: “Are these insights unique to our experience?” Content creators can talk in circles about the same basic topics related to your industry. Unless your content provides more unique information or is ranked higher on Google, a generic post won’t encourage too many backlinks. Backlinks for evergreen content are often referencing or referring to the blog post in question. What can users reference that is unique to your experiences as a business?
This is where case studies come in handy.
Case studies allow your business to look at a specific scenario and create sharable statistics. Results are often an easy-to-digest example of how a product or service works for your customers. Even if these case studies take extra resources or time to conduct, having a more unique piece of content will pay off in backlinks and website traffic.
How to Generate Backlinks with Case Studies: Once the case study is created and strategically placed on your website, continue to distribute the case study on social media and forums to bring attention to relevant researchers.
Here’s an example. An arborist wants to create effective content that will generate backlinks and boost the website’s domain authority. They conduct and document a case study detailing a relevant topic to their industry, like the effectiveness of a specific fertilizer with different types of trees. This case study is available on their website and shared through social media and on different types of forums. Content creators that write about different types of fertilizers and tree care may find this information useful, and link back to the specific statistics within the case study.
Consider adding case studies to your website or detailing the study in a file that can be downloaded. Case studies aren’t just great for backlinks; if you want to offer your potential leads in-depth content, have case studies on hand.
Infographics are a fun, visual way to display information and statistics that websites may want to reference. Add an infographic that explains in-depth content pieces like case studies or evergreen content. Creating this type of content gives you different options for sharing information and building links without researching any new content.
How to Generate Backlinks with Infographics: Infographics are easy to create and share, especially on social media sites. Most of the work concerning infographics comes from finding who has shared your infographic and making sure they have given you the proper credit. Once your infographics have been published, regularly conduct a reverse search of the file to see who has shared your content. Even if you include a link back to your website within the infographic, most creators will also include physical links to your website on the post where the infographic was shared. Reach out to websites who have shared your infographic and ask for credit through a link.
Enhance Your Link-Building Strategy with Digital Squad
Successful link building strategies include proactive measures taken to find relevant content that will link back to your website. Once you have content that creates relevant and useful backlinks, you have to make sure these backlinks are included and the rest of your website supports the traffic you will receive from link-building.
Round out your link building strategy by reaching out to an SEO agency that understands the ins and outs of link building for a higher DA score or keyword rankings.
Megan Okonsky is a copywriter and content marketing specialist with Digital Squad. She is originally from Philadelphia but has landed in Melbourne after traveling for eight months in Southeast Asia and New Zealand. She also teaches vinyasa yoga online.