Link building is heavily regulated and highly scrutinized by search engines, making white hat link building the safest option when developing a website. Google interprets the context of content and can assess the relationship of every link in your profile extremely accurately. This creates the necessity for highly contextual, relevant links to your website.
You can acquire more quality backlinks by expanding on the range of link building tactics you implement. The links you acquire should always be from healthy, relevant sites that ideally pass on authority. It’s not just the quantity, but the quality of your backlinks that will attribute to a high ranking.
At DIgital Ducats Inc., a local SEO company in Toronto, we put strategic thought behind every link built to a site. Using a variety of link building methods can provide more flexibility in finding link prospects for acquiring relevant, authoritative links.
Apart from giving you an edge as a link builder, adding different methods of link building to your arsenal will improve the quality of the backlink profiles you create.
Here are three undervalued link-building tactics to add variety to your backlink profile and get the needle moving for a stronger position in the search results.
Event link building
Companies can acquire a link by hosting the event or sponsoring an event. Both options are useful for link building however each provides a slightly different advantage depending on the goals that have been set within the business marketing strategies.
Hosting your own event
Hosting an event can be ideal for a business that is not solely interested in acquiring a link but looking to network within the community. This allows a business the opportunity to theme a presentation tailored to promote their business and invite potential partners and clients.
Working with a site that specializes in facilitating meetings can improve the awareness of your event. The process for acquiring a link from your hosted event can be done in three steps:
1. Find a site that will give you a good link.
2. Set up your information page
3. Promote your event
Choose a site that is relevant, authoritative and does, in fact, offer a link back to your website. This type of link building strategy gives you the opportunity to go after some local links, which are the most advantageous in local SEO.
Meetup.com is a good option for setting up an event in your area. You can set up your own group and target the meeting for a specific area or city.
Your group page allows you a link back to your site.
The bonus to Meetup is that the site already gets traffic with people who are looking for groups to attend. With a membership, you have access to the Meetup network and can build your audience with genuinely interested attendees.
There are similar sites to Meetup that offer the same service. Here is a list of 6 sites that you can also explore to host and promote your event.
Apart from receiving a link from one of these sites, you should publish a page about your event on your own website and promote your event locally.
Submit the details to local newspapers, directories and any local website that has a relevant audience.
Getting a link from these types of local entities is extremely beneficial for building a local presence. Quality local links move your position up in the localized search results as well give you a better chance for appearing in the Local Pack.
Sponsoring an event
The advantage of sponsoring an event over hosting your own is that you can get a link without the trouble of organizing (or attending for that matter).
From a link building perspective, this is ideal because you simply need to find a relevant event that you can contribute to for a link.
Many hosted events will offer a page to credit the sponsors of the event with a backlink. Search for events like this on Meetup or any similar type of site by using a command operative to produce a list of options.
Enter the following into Google: site:meetup.com inurl:sponsors
This command will tell Google to search Meetup.com for pages that have the phrase “sponsors” in the URL. The pages in your search result are the groups that have accepted sponsors with a dedicated page.
Here is an example of the sponsor page from an event pulled from those results.
The beauty of this option is that the bulk of the link building process is finding the most suitable events to sponsor.
Base your prospects on the authority of the site and most of all the relevance of the event. You don’t want to be sponsoring a cooking convention if you’re in the real estate business. Choose an event that has an obvious relationship with your niche to maximize the benefits of the link.
Crowdfunding link building
Crowdfunding link building could be considered a variant to sponsored event link building. If you’re not familiar with the term crowdfunding, it’s when a lot of people contribute or donate money to a specific project. In many cases, the donors are thanked by linking to their site.
You can find these types of links by searching crowdfunding sites for relevant projects.
Kickstarter.com is probably among the most popular. To find a project that fits your niche enter the following into Google:
site:kickstarter.com inurl:projects + “donors page” +”your keyword”
By adding your keyword to the end of the command operative you narrow your search results down to provide a better match to your niche. This process still requires a good deal of sifting through page results but there are loads of opportunities for good links.
The contribution amount will vary from project to project, but you can pay as little as $1 to chip in on a project. Be sure to read whether a minimum donation amount exists to get your link on their donor page. There are increments of donation amounts and each increment the project group will give their donor a little more for their donation.
Here is a list of crowdfunding sites popularly used to give you the best chance for a high authority link.
Testimonial link building
The name pretty much sums it up. You can grab some pretty good links by offering testimonials to companies for a link back to your site. This type of link building is beneficial to both the company you’re prospecting as well as your own business.
One of the most powerful forms of advertising is word of mouth. A convincing, authentic testimonial will sell more products and services for another business. A testimonial placed on the homepage is the best possible scenario for acquiring a powerful link.
A good deal of link building is done through some form of outreach. Whether it’s broken link building, pitching guest posts or asking a site to link to your content, they all involve making contact with the site owner to ask for the link.
The most successful campaigns are those that offer the most value to the site owner (link prospect). Brian Dean reported his “highly successful” broken link-building campaign at a conversion rate of 10%. This means that 90% of the people you ask are going to refuse or ignore your request.
You might need every advantage in your SEO strategy and website interface design for successful conversion rate optimization that could reflect in digital marketing analytics. Testimonials, along with keywords, link building, backlinks, and marketing automation can provide that value to your prospects and therefore improve your chances of conversion dramatically.
This type of link building tactic can be done in three steps:
1. Make a list of the products you use in your daily operations
2. Reach out to companies who supply these products or services
3. Write your testimonial
List your prospects
The best testimonials are authentic. It’s true there are some pretty good actors who will lie about a product for a link or because they’re paid to but why not provide a real testimonial about a product you have experience with?
Compile a list of the resources you use in the operation of your business. They can be the tools you use on a daily basis as well as the more permanent long-term solution you’ve invested in.
Include the software your use, the web developers, web designers, themes, templates and literally anything you have legitimate experience in using.
Contact your suppliers
Write your outreach email offering to give your supplier a glowing testimonial.
Highlight a few things that really helped your business.
Tell them you want to inform people about how their product has helped your business. Be genuine about providing an explanation that helps people understand the value of their product to your business.
What company wouldn’t want a testimonial that promotes their product? The chances are that if they have a testimonial page on their site, they will be more than happy to add your review of their product and/or service.
Write your testimonial
Spend time writing a convincing testimonial that communicates how the product helped you professionally. The advantage of writing a testimonial for a company whose product you’ve been using for a long time is that you can make it extremely authentic.
Identify a common problem that people have and how you were able to solve it. When you’re hitting the nail on the head with the issues that resonate with people, you’re giving your supplier the best type of promotion possible.
This is the type of review that will get your testimonial a link to your site and possibly a homepage appearance.
Here’s a testimonial from Tony Robbins featured on Sumo (which got him a link to his site)
Research product launches
Find companies that will welcome your testimonial by searching for product launches. This is the best time for a company to promote their business through the reviews of people using their product.
Companies who are still building their credibility will often post reviews on their homepage. This is the best location for your link since you can receive referral traffic as a bonus to acquiring the link.
Companies launching new products are typically more open to giving you a link back to your site.
Offer a video testimonial
The better your testimonial, the more likely you’ll feature in a position with more visibility. A video testimonial is another option that may get you more visibility through the company’s social media. The more value your review presents the more likelihood for better placement on their site.
Fuel your ranking power
There isn’t a single website that ranks in the first position on Google without quality backlinks. Finding relevant, authority links for your pages can be the deciding factor for outranking your competition.
Having an arsenal of link building options will help give your website the competitive edge it needs for increasing traffic through an improved ranking position.
Link building isn’t just about finding high authority sites. Find relevant sites with strong relationships with your own for the most powerful link opportunities. The authority of many local sites are not that high, yet they have a much stronger influence on local rankings.
Link from the websites your ideal visitors are frequenting. Increase the amount of targeted referral traffic your site generates by improving the number of entry points from relevant websites.
Use these three undervalued options for link building to help uncover more opportunities for authoritative, relevant links that are guaranteed to improve your site’s ranking.
Christian Carere is an SEO consultant and the founder of Digital Ducats Inc. Christian is an avid contributor to the digital marketing community offering advice to businesses to improve the quality and quantity of traffic to their website.