How to build links to a website: link-building methods in 2018

How to build links to a website: link-building methods in 2018

Link building is the process of promoting websites by creating links to a website on integral, authoritative web resources. The purchase of links on the market is not regarded as link building. In this feature, we will answer the question, “How do I build links to my website?” and highlight the most effective link-building strategies most frequently practiced by SEO experts in 2018.

The process of link building requires patience, creativity, and many subsequent intelligible actions. Nevertheless, the effort spent is fully justified. First, it is unlikely that properly built links will conflict with search systems’ robots (which happens with links bought on the market). Second, users will get qualitative content leading to your resource, which increases your chances of gaining the trust of internet dwellers. Overall, despite the complexity, link building always provides high promotion guarantees.

Links that Google loves

Google loves natural links, which are links that are placed for free by real people with the goal of sharing good information. It was expected that real people would share links to the pages they love, but in reality, it is not working as it expected. Yes, you could create an article that will bring you backlinks, but to get good results, you have to “help” the links appear.

As of 2018, Google’s search algorithm has almost perfectly learned how to recognize spam links leading to nonsense or shamelessly advertising content. Links coming from a single domain are also detected and restricted—Google automatically sorts out all such links as one type of restricted source. Generally speaking, material to which your link leads must be useful for users, unique from the text-uniqueness perspective, and located on a page with a topic that is closely related to your material’s topic.

If you are a novice in link building, you will likely make one mistake that could render all your effort useless. To have a clear idea of the profitability (or lack thereof) of your actions, you will have to employ specialized online services initially. We will discuss such services below.

How to validate a backlink’s quality

Since Google announced that it uses a dedicated web page ranking system, PageRank, SEO experts have started massively using this service to check external links. However, the public version of this service is currently closed.

Fortunately, not all is as lost. The major logistics of PageRank are repeated by its clone solution, InLinkRank. Yes, it’s a paid service, but it’s worth it. On the other hand, if you have a small budget, you can use this free tool that is no less informative while being also pretty helpful for SEO.

The basic principles of PageRank’s operation (as well as that of InLinkRank) are the degree of popularity among users and the general level of the content’s usefulness. In turn, dishonest content that doesn’t bring any practical benefits to web users is automatically identified by Google. However, it is possible that your post won’t even pass the moderation stage of the public resource on which you have chosen to place your external link.

Everything related to link building is very difficult to automate (although, theoretically, 80-level SEO heroes often use special bots for registration on sites). Therefore, link building is often initially regarded as a labor-intensive way to promote things online.

How to see the result of new links

Many professionals use Screaming Frog, a software solution that automatically analyzes web pages for factors or the absence of factors that negatively affect search-result ratings. Pages are checked in accordance with the TF-IDF algorithm and are compared to identical competitors’ solutions to present as many enhancement tips as possible.

To use Screaming Frog, you’ll need a set of keywords that you include in your text and a link to the page that must be analyzed.

After the link is checked by the service, you’ll get a list of detailed recommendations to help you make your page more relevant and useful for your audience, which will also improve its ranking from the search system’s perspective.

Anchor distribution

One of the most powerful promotional tools for pages with external links is anchored text. If several such backlinks lead to one page with properly selected keywords, the page will have improved chances of appearing at the top of the search results.

From the technical point of view, SEO professionals usually include anchored links in the typed text—that is, they make one or several words clickable.

Adding anchor test can be achieved in two ways:

  1. <a href=http://site_url.come>Anchor</a> works for websites supporting HTML code
  2. [url=http://site_url.com]Anchor[/url] is the BBCode format, and it can be employed in cases where HTML code isn’t recognized, which frequently happens on various forums

How to find websites for link building

We are now at the most important part: how to find resources for creating inbound links to your website Even the most experienced link builders with a dedicated database of resources for posting must spend a lot of time looking for sufficient options. Many experts regard this task as the most painless one in the link-building process.

How to find websites for link building

Google features advanced capabilities that can significantly facilitate your search. Namely, you can use four general search operators to boost the search’s efficiency:

  • This operator is used to search through a certain domain or website. Employ it by entering, for example, “site:wikipedia.org” in the search bar. Google will list ages from the Wikipedia domain only. You can also look up keywords this way: “link building site:wikipedia.org” will search for the keywords “link building” on Wikipedia pages only.
  • This method allows users to look up web pages linked to a certain domain or website. Entering “link:facebook.com,” for example, will giveyou a number of resource pages that feature links to Facebook.
  • Employ this method in a Google search to look up similar resources. For example, enter“related:instagram.com,” and you’ll get a list of similar photo-sharing sites.
  • OR. This command makes Google search for a particular keyword or several keywords exclusively. There is no need for a repetitive search on many objects with this one.

Regarding the type of resources to consider for link posting right off the bat, there are some obvious options—popular blogs, forums, and public web services like Quora can all fit this purpose. It is very simple to work with them. In fact, it’s similar to the way regular users uninterested in promoting any commercial solutions use them.

Nevertheless, it’s important to keep in mind that practically all such resources moderate the material before publishing it. If a post is found to be an ad in nature or its topic isn’t related to the target resource in any way, it won’t be published. Choose only the resources that relate to the topic of your posts and your referring web pages as much as possible.

Free guest posting

If you’re looking for web resources where you are allowed to post promotional assets for free, the following sites will come in handy:

Of course, there are other similar resources, so be prepared to spend a good amount of time and effort on posting.

Crowd marketing: spam or power?

The term “crowd marketing” means the method of increasing product sales among the target audience by stimulating reviews and recommendations. Basically, it’s a combination of SEO and SMM approaches; it’s directed at generating a positive company image online by formulating “proper” reviews on third-party sites.

By mentioning the name of your company along with the required keywords, you can significantly increase the volume of incoming direct traffic (this is, by the way, a straight road to the SERP tops). Notice also that such mentioning must necessarily be useful to the reader and appear not as an ad but as a recommendation.

Crowd marketing: spam or power?

Crowd marketing includes the following manipulations implemented by an expert:

  • Creating reviews for a product or company on forums and other online communities
  • Responding to comments
  • Monitoring comments and posts where a name of the company, its service, or a separate product is mentioned
  • Monitoring questions in the form of FAQs about services
  • Creating comments and answering other users’ comments on themed blogs
  • Creating recommendation (not advertising) publications for potential customers with the involvement of hidden marketing techniques

Sponsored posts are posts that feature useful information for users and include open links leading to an advertised object (company, item, service). They are posted on third-party resources (namely, blogs related to the advertisement’s topic) and are paid for by advertisers (that is, the blog owner gets a certain reward for publishing the post on their blog).

Link-building techniques: some useful tips for sponsored posts

Let’s check out some link-building techniques that will help you create high-quality content for a sponsored post.

Proper post format

Generally speaking, the approach to creating a proper sponsored post is universal. As per usual, sponsored posts are focused on advertising solely, and in addition to the discussion of relevant user issues, a specific product or service is actively promoted throughout the text. The recommended format is a review of the product or service that describes your target audience’s issues and ways to solve them with an anchored link somewhere at the end of the feature.

Proper resources

When establishing a sponsored post on a blog or other web resource, make sure that the average traffic readings comprise at least 200 unique visits per day. To come up with a list for sponsored post allocation, you can simply search the following on Google:

  • “your business type” + sponsored post;
  • “your business type” + write for us;
  • “your business type” + sponsored article.

Link reclamation

This approach is perfect if you know that your brand has already been discussed heavily one online. Just track down the resources where your brand has been mentioned in some way. Contact the editors who posted these mentions and ask them to insert a link in your brand name in the text. Voila! You got yourself a backlink. You can even make a deal with the editor to post such links in the future. Conduct this process regularly to get as many advantages as possible out of it.

Barter with bloggers

Ask bloggers related to your niche test out your product in exchange for a review that includes a link to your website. The more famous the blogger, the more money they will ask for. Otherwise, your product must be pretty special to act as sufficient payment in itself. You can look for the best fitting bloggers via specialized resources like influenster.com, or you may already know suitable bloggers with target audiences similar to yours.

PBN Network

PBN (Private Blog Network) is a group of sites or blogs that include links to the external website currently in promotion.

PBN Network

The principle of PBN formulation is as follows:

  • Purchase of drops. Purchased initially are drops – recently expired domains on a required topic that can be restored to your advantage (with existing links, comments, posts, i.e., everything that can boost both users’ and searching robots’ level of trust). We’d recommend purchasing no more than 2-3 drops for your PBN;
  • Drops efficiency check and their filling with posts for website promotion. First, you’ll have to formulate a sample text with links to an advertised resource (up to 3 thousand symbols) and locate it in a drop. In several weeks, if its rating isn’t boosted, it means that it’s filtered, and another drop should be selected for the link building purposes. If everything went successfully – you get a green light to continue filling the drop with ad posts;
  • Purchase and filling of sites and microsites. The next step is the purchase of sites with continuous growth, as well as of microsites, and filling it with backlinks. Internet-marketing specialists recommend purchasing 2-3 such websites and 8-10 microsites for a network monthly.

Notice the creation of the PBN is a resource-consuming process that requires the participation of analysts, copywriters, SEO professionals, and content managers. You’re unlikely to implement it single-handedly.

Sites with content contributing

There are sites, whose owners are interested in updating fresh, unique themed content of high quality regularly. If you’re capable of proving your expertise by writing full-blown articles on a theme connected with your major business activity (which you’re planning to promote through backlinks), such resources will be a great place for your link building techniques. We highlighted some resources of that kind above in the ‘Free guest posting’ paragraph.

Social networks

Social networks are among the most frequently visited web resources that accept millions of users each second. You can employ this advantage. Despite the fact that searching robots don’t rank links from social networks (apart from Reddit), you can converse with real people on the themed public pages and leave respective links there. Also, don’t forget to update your profile regularly with interesting posts that should collect a maximum number of comments, likes, and reposts.

Links exchange

Links exchange is another efficient link building technique. Basically, several sites publish posts linked to one another. This can bring good results if you choose an identically-themed site with solid age, good traffic, small number of links to third-party resources, and absence of nofollow links as your ‘partner’.

Viral content

Last, our link building guide ends with viral content. Its goal is to solve two tasks – active distribution (by opinion leaders as well) and generation of new target traffic. Such content is characterized by:

  • Emotionality (i.e., it’ll certainly provoke emotions);
  • ‘Story’ format (people believe in real-life stories more than in advertising material, obviously);
  • Practicality (i.e., it isn’t nonsensical);
  • Public recognition (i.e., it features a good-sized section enriched with comments and likes);
  • Attachment to a certain topic (namely, the one with which your promoted website is associated);
  • Uniqueness (basically, your feature must be a piece of ‘know-how’);

Adhering to all these points will let you generate features with great popularity potential.

The best link building strategies in 2018

Link building isn’t just a time-consuming, strategically important process. It also requires special skills in copywriting, viral content generation, and formulation of posts for social networks. You have to find good websites to place your link. For that, you must have skills in choosing donors.

There is no best strategy for link building in 2018. You have to combine all ways to reach the goal. Also, do not forget about frequency — do link building frequently, growing your project step by step.

Either way, if you’re planning to get as much as possible out of your link building, you won’t manage without the help of experts. In particular, we will help catapult your website to the forefront of search results. We’d be pleased to make a new valuable client in you!

Post author
Andrey Novoselov
Editor