While there are hundreds of factors that Google uses to rank a website, backlinks are undoubtedly some of the main building blocks of good Search Engine Optimization. It’s a fact that Google makes regular updates to its ranking algorithms that impact SEO. No one can know for sure what Google will do next, but high-quality backlinks will remain a decisive Google ranking factor. For this reason, it pays off to learn how to build quality backlinks to your blog.
But what exactly constitutes a quality backlink, you may be wondering. Backlinks are links directed towards your website and the more backlinks you have, the higher Google will rank you in their results pages. The catch is that not all backlinks have the same value. When Google analyzes the quality of backlinks, they look at how authoritative the site linking to you is and how related it is to your niche or main topic.
It’s important to keep in mind that using black hat SEO techniques can risk penalization from Google. The following are some ways you can build quality backlinks the right way:
1. Guest post for authoritative websites
“Domain authority” is a metric used to measure a website’s authority on a scale of 0 to 100. Websites with a lower ranking than yours aren’t as useful in terms of increasing your level of trust. To help you determine where to focus your guest blogging efforts, you can use Moz Bar, a tool that shows the authority status of any domain.
2. Write for highly reputable websites in your niche
As important as it is to get an authoritative website linking to you, the effort goes to waste if the website isn’t relevant to your industry. Guest blogging for websites in your niche helps you promote your website, increase your referral traffic, become an expert in your industry and, yes, get a quality backlink. Similar Site Search is a tool that can help you find relevant websites.
3. Write for a website more than once
It’s important for backlinks to look as natural as possible. Guest posting for a website more than once can help the appearance of those backlinks as you continue to offer valuable commentary on your area of expertise. Keep in mind that Google is getting better and better at detecting shady SEO practices. If you land a guest blogging opportunity for a blog with a higher ranking than yours, use it to boost your credibility and become an expert in your field. Want to write a guest post for Pagely? Let us know.
4. Create infographics based on trending topics
Infographics are highly shareable, so look at what topics are trending at the moment in your industry and invest in creating a high-quality infographic. Make sure you mention at the bottom that you created the infographic. That way, if it goes viral, it will get a lot of views and might bring in some backlinks if viewers embed it into their own websites.
5. Don’t forget about powerhouses that don’t include a ‘no-follow’ tag
‘No-follow’ tags are pieces of code that tell search engines to ignore backlinks built from a given site. They exist to prevent spammers from opening countless Facebook profiles and YouTube accounts to create backlinks for their website. However, not all social media sites have ‘no-follow’ tags. You can create Google profiles for your company’s key employees and founders and include custom links with anchor text for the search terms for which you want to be found. LinkedIn also allows you to create custom anchor text when you choose ‘other’ in the first website link. Google Places lets you create a local business listing with target keywords in the profile and description fields.
6. The broken-link method
This method involves contacting a webmaster to report broken links on his or her website. When you email them to report the problem, you can make a friendly suggestion that they replace the broken link with your website. The chances of a backlink back to your website are high because you are doing the webmaster a favor and because a link to you is better than a 404 page error.
7. Email outreach to promote content
Persuading influential leaders to promote your brand is beneficial for link building, relationship development and content promotion. When deciding which influencers to contact, focus on these criteria: content fit, reach and engagement. Influencers won’t necessarily charge you a hefty sum of money, but they will need to know how they’ll benefit from this relationship. Will there be promotional perks or access to a new audience?
8. Produce valuable content
There’s a reason why content is king. No matter how many backlinks you have or how well you optimize your site, if your content isn’t good enough to be shared, your SEO campaign won’t work. Take the time to map out a content strategy and only publish high quality content. You want viewers to find you through SEO, but once they do, you should be sure that your content is valuable to them.
Once you start building quality backlinks, remember to keep track of them. You should know which sites are linking back to you and how keywords relating to your site are incorporated into the anchor text of the backlink. There are many online tools that can help you with this task, like SE Ranking:
Another good option is Ahrefs:
The most important thing to remember when starting to build quality backlinks for your blog is that the process will take time and you will need to be patient. Prioritize backlinks on your list of SEO efforts and soon enough you’ll see a return.