When it comes to search engine optimization, link building is an important component of increasing your website’s search ranking. In a nutshell, link building involves getting other web domains to link to your own website. This linking increases your web page’s authority, because search engine algorithms view websites that are consistently linked to as worthwhile and authoritative on their subject matter. Thus, having many different websites linking to your content can help get you closer to the front page of Google and other search engines.
What are the elements of a link?
Since links are crucial to the way search engines operate, it’s important to understand the two basic components of a hyperlink. A link consists of two primary pieces: a referral and anchor text. The referral location is the part of HTML code that points the user to a specific URL. The anchor text is the word or phrase that is hyperlinked. Having anchor text that strongly correlates to the referral location, such as the text “shoes on sale” pointing to a wholesale retailer of low-priced footwear, is likely to perform much better than if the text linked to a pet store. Users should land on a webpage that matches their expectations when they click on each link.
So how does link building work?
Link building campaigns focus on increasing the number of other websites that link to your webpage. Your campaign should have measurable goals, along with a clear understanding of what keywords you want to target (these will help form your anchor text) and what part of your website you want to link to (your referral location). From there, you will both create content that serves a need of your users and perform outreach to get that content linked to from other sources.
Take the shoe example from earlier. If you are looking to drive more traffic to your boutique footwear business during a winter sale, you may create a blog post that serves as a definitive guide to winter footwear. Creating useful, engaging content that naturally appeals to your audience is key when it comes to getting better page rankings. This point is driven home by Forbes.com’s Brian Sutter, who states that “Sadly, much of the content being published is simply not worth linking to. Your content will generate links only if it is truly remarkable.”
Even so, creating engaging content is only the first step to your link building campaign. Next, you would want to reach out to others who may be willing to link to your blog post and help give you a boost. In this example, fashion bloggers may be a good source of referral links, so a cursory search of fashion or shoe bloggers online and on Twitter and Instagram should garner you some solid candidates. Once you’ve created a list of potential referral sources, the hard part comes — making the ask. Reaching out to these bloggers and pitching them on why they should link to your website can be daunting, but is well worth the time and effort it takes. Best of all, once you’ve received one “yes,” it’s easier to point to that example as further proof that your next blogger should consider linking to you, too.
A link building campaign works because of quality; not because of quantity. Having multiple backlinks from reputable, well-performing websites is going to go a long way in terms of driving traffic to your website. If you are looking for more detailed information about your webpage’s backlinks, or are interested in getting help with content generation, a company like Link Graph can help. Businesses like these offer targeted content creation that can lead to substantial results in your page ranking and search engine results. They also help you negotiate the task of finding quality candidates to house your links, as they often have a cache of high-ranking, authoritative websites.
Link building and search engine optimization can sound like complicated tasks, but with some careful planning, it is easy to make an impact on your website’s search page ranking. Taking the time to create well-crafted, appealing content and finding the right channels to link to that content will go a long way in improving your web traffic. Plus, with businesses ready to assist you if you have questions, there’s no excuse not to begin your next link building campaign!