As you’ve transitioned your storefront and services online, you can’t help but wonder how people are going to find your website. You know that almost 88% of people in America shop online, but how will your business reach them?
But on top of building or updating your website, you’re figuring out shipping logistics. You’re creating social media pages and finding quality IT support, (not to mention balancing your personal life obligations). Learning how to bring people in online is a problem to solve later.
However, you understand that the more customers you have visiting your website, the more likely it is that you close sales.
And of course, you’d be right!
Then, after all the hustle and bustle of getting your website live is over and things have calmed down for just a second, you keep seeing the term SEO pop up when you’re googling strategies for online marketing. But it might as well be gibberish – search engine optimization? What even is that?
As it turns out, the way to generate more web traffic has a lot to do with SEO – especially a little term called backlinks.
What Are Backlinks?
Backlinks play a huge role in your SEO ranking on search engines – especially Google.
Basically, backlinks are links within a piece of content that sends a reader to another website when they click on written text.
For example, if you were writing a blog article about “How to Make Cold Brew Coffee”, you might want to talk about the best brand of coffee for the brew. Including a link to the coffee vendor’s website is an effective way to provide your readers with even more information or resources.
After you hit publish and the blog post is live, the business you linked has now earned a backlink from you. This makes search engines give their website a vote of confidence – so to speak.
When this happens, Google begins to recognize the linked website or article as providing valuable information. Backlinks are like your digital reputation or credibility in the eyes of Google. So when more websites link to your own, search engines see that you’re providing value to users online, and thus, raises your ranking in its index.
Which, in turn, leads to more organic traffic!
Simple enough, right? Well, “how do you actually create backlinks?” you might ask.
1. Create Exemplary Content
Quality content is first and foremost the secret ingredient to successful SEO marketing.
The returns from high-quality written content for your SEO game are two-fold. First, well-researched, properly formatted, and grammatically sound content written by professionals will signal to Google that you produce quality information on your industry. Copywriters and content marketers know how to not only capture your brand’s voice and speak in the direction of your audience, but they know how to incorporate keywords into their work. That means when someone searches Google with certain words or asks a question, your website will come up – ready to solve their problem or steer them in the right direction.
All of this already gives you a massive boost to your SEO standing.
But as an added bonus, the better your content is, the more likely it is that other websites in your industry will link back to your articles. So you’ll earn Google’s stamp of approval for producing good content and when others in your industry recognize your thoughtful work.
Need a team of master writers to support you in all your SEO endeavors? Our copywriters are on standby. Sign up for a discovery call with us today!
Skyscraper Content (Or How To Rise Above The Rest)
Skyscraper content is a type of content that rises above every other existing piece of content on the same subject. While challenging and time-consuming, (skyscraper articles should be 1,500+ words, ideally, even more!) investing your energy into creating long-form skyscraper content could give you an edge.
Similar to pillar content, you can use skyscraper content as an opportunity to create in-depth educational guides and online courses. Or you can focus on a single question being asked by your audience and answer it extensively.
If creating a skyscraper piece sounds a bit intimidating, you can always create a smaller version first. Then over time, add more to the piece. Plus, constantly refreshing your content can also improve SEO.
Guest Blogs: Share Your Perspective & Insight!
Another way content creation can create backlinks is through guest blogging. Reach out to other professionals or publications that are in your industry, and ask to write a blog for them in exchange for a backlink to your website. Doing this may even expand your network and make you new connections.
However, you’ll want to be sure your values align with the publication’s, and that you have some work to show as a reference.
Find Broken & Old Links, Then Pitch Your Content As Replacement!
Once you have quality content in your arsenal, try digging around online for a while, reading various articles about your industry. Sometimes, older backlinks can take readers to a website that was taken down after the article was originally published. That means the backlink is basically broken and isn’t providing value to the reader or the website that’s hosting it.
When this happens, reach out directly to the website owner and pitch your content as a replacement backlink. Finding broken links might take a while, but you might be surprised at how many you discover. And, reading those articles provides an opportunity to learn more about your industry.
Either way, finding broken backlinks is a surprisingly effective way to build up your backlink portfolio.
2. Collaborate & Connect With Your Industry and Network
Another way to build up backlinks besides just creating content is by connecting with others in your industry and network. What’s more, this gives you an opportunity to dive deeper into your industry and audience (and even create professional connections).
Get Listed On A Resources Page
One of the simpler ways of building up your backlinks is by having your content featured on a resources page. While exploring websites in your industry, look to see if they have a “master list” of website links to other domains.
Many websites put together a page for their readers where they can learn more about a specific topic. For example, food blogs may have links to websites with more recipes. So send a message to the admin with a link to your content!
Hop-On A Podcast
Found a podcast in your industry that you love? Reach out to the host and see if you can join them for an episode.
Joining a podcast allows you to dive right into the heart of the conversations taking place in your industry. You’ll hear perspectives from other professionals, engage directly with your audience, and have the opportunity to share your thoughts with the community.
Not only is this great publicity for both you and the podcast, but you’ll also have the chance to earn a quality backlink on their website as well.
Help Out A Journalist
Sometimes, journalists need to speak with experts in certain fields to interview credible sources. You can volunteer your time to answer questions about your industry to help a journalist complete their story. Just ask them to link to your website in the finished article!
This strategy can set you apart from competitors because a journalist has chosen you to act as a thought leader. When someone who has limited or no knowledge of your industry reads the journalist’s story, they’ll be sent right to your website.
Ask For Testimonials
After you’ve been working with a client for a while, ask them if they would like to exchange testimonials about each other’s services. For example, in exchange for your testimonial, you’ll display their testimonial on your website, and then backlink to them. Not only will this generate more backlinks, but it may also bring in more clients since you’re actively promoting each other’s work.
3. Be Wary Of Quality Backlinks vs Toxic Backlinks
While you might think more backlinks are better, the SEO benefits from backlinks come from the quality of backlinks, not the quantity.
Originally, Google’s algorithm looked at the number of backlinks more than the actual quality of the link. Naturally, buying and selling links was common practice to quickly accumulate links and rise to the top of Google.
Now, Google considers backlinks generated in this way as “toxic”, and they harm your SEO ranking instead of bolstering it.
But, this is just one example of a toxic backlink. Additionally, if websites with similar pages all link to your website with the same hyperlink or anchor text, search engines may register you as trying to build links quickly and maliciously like the tactic above.
Either way, when you have a toxic backlink, Google’s algorithm will automatically penalize your website. That harms your ranking on the index.
Want to guarantee that all your backlinks are high-quality? First, you’ll need content written by the expert writers at FocusCopy! Contact us to learn more about how we can help your business grow.
How To Remove Toxic Backlinks
Before you work to remove any potentially toxic links, you’ll have to identify which links could be causing you trouble.
The Backlink Analytics tool from Semrush generates data about your backlink portfolio and can identify which links might be harmful. And thankfully, there are some ways in which you can remove a toxic backlink from your website.
For starters, you can reach out to the website’s host and ask them to remove the link to your content. If the link is actually coming from a quality domain but Google incorrectly categorized it, you can ask for a manual review of the link from Google themselves.
You can also use Google’s “Disavow” tool from their search console to remove toxic backlinks. WARNING: You’ll want to read up on how to properly use the tool to ensure you don’t harm your website’s search performance.
Partner With The Content Experts & Create Backlinks
Content really is king when it comes to SEO. But when you’re juggling business obligations and your personal life, there’s simply not enough time to create content yourself.
To grow your business, you need a team of copywriters who can support your content creation, make your brands stand out from the crowd, and help you bring in more leads. So, reach out to us at FocusCopy! We’d love to talk about your goals and how we can help you achieve them. Schedule a discovery call today.