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Key Link Building Strategies – #seslondon

21 February 2012 BY

Obviously Link building is a huge part of any SEO strategy and it was great to hear from two great speakers on the subject.

Patrick Altoft from Branded3

Patrick started the session indicating that he was covering a lot of the basics.
Links are important, once you have completed your onsite optimisation everything else should be focused towards link building. Most people don’t give it the attention that it deserves.

Link analysis
Very important to define what types of links your site is going to need to compete. Every site is different and you won’t know what links are needed until an analysis is complete. Look at anchor text link profiling against your competition. Segment them into brand vs. non brand links which will identify the areas that you are strong and weak in.
Domain authority reports through open site explorer shows your number of links from quality domains. Very useful for pitching too.

Different types of links
• Linkbait
• Paid Links – tread carefully. Every paid link should look natural.
• Guest Content – approaching bloggers to write content for them
• Syndication – only do this when you have significant link strength already
• Exchanging Links – does work if not on a links page
• Social Links – no one really knows how effective they are but useful for getting to other platforms
• Giveaways – Google treats giveaways the same way as paid links so be careful

Prospecting

The easiest links to get are from people you already know:
• Customers
• Suppliers
• Friends
• Bloggers

Email everybody you know asking whether you can contribute content for a link. Once this is done expand your horizons and engage with the community at large emailing them to see if you can contribute.

Linkbait
Create a great piece of content for the site with the aim of attracting links. The main problem is most websites are reluctant to link to a commercial website. The links are also most often linking to the wrong area i.e. blog vs. category page.

Link Penalties
Bad links can hurt a site and the only way you can recover is to remove and request a re-inclusion. The biggest link is to acquire through a link network. Review your link report every month and sift for quality.

Lisa Myers from Verve Search

On of our very own Lisa Myers started by saying you need a brain and tools.

1.Target Audience
Know who you are talking to, is it related to other industries. Identify social influencers within your industry and market.

2.Link analysis and management
There are many major tools that help with the link management and Lisa went through Linkdex as an example. Analyse your current anchors and make sure you have the coverage that you need. Contact the links that are linking incorrectly and change that link. You may also want to get people to link to deeper pages rather than the home page.
Linkdex also shows the types of links in the different verticals. Segment your blogs, press etc. Referring domain numbers are also very important and not just contributing to the number of links you have. Linkdex also has a good filtering tool where you can analyse the quality links other sites have per vertical.

3.Link prospecting
Finding relevant sites is an art. Looking for Keyword + “article”, “blog”, “directory”. Keyword inurl:”write for us”, “guestpost” are good ideas. You can use a scraper tool (will link later) to identify link targets.

4.Creative and Implementation
Utilising existing relationships
Simplest way of getting a link. Which university did your CEO go to? Would your partners, customers or suppliers link to you? Lisa managed to get a link from Apple for a client.

5.Link Baiting
Often the easiest way to get links. It needs to be a great idea or it won’t work. You need to host the content though. If you are doing a social campaign you need to garner those links so make sure you host it on a platform you own. Lisa then went on to share all the various successes she has had by implementing the above tactics.

This post in part made possible by a sponsoring from Majestic SEO who have the largest Link Intelligence database in Search.

AUTHORED BY:
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Louis Venter is the founding director and CEO of MediaVision, a Search Engine Marketing (SEM) company specialising in all areas of search. His particular interests are organic search marketing, paid search marketing, conversion strategy and online PR.