Link Building & SEO strategies for e-commerce #SMX Munich

Link Building & SEO strategies for e-commerce #SMX Munich

2nd April 2012

Continuing on from SMX Munich last week, this session was so informative, it deserves its own post! A cracking run down of tips and tricks for e-commerce websites from Richard Baxter at SEO Gadget.

“People think that link building is hard, but it’s not, you just have to want to own the content that you are building and sharing – even if that content isn’t that great you can still get links from it.“

15 link building strategies for your e-commerce site or your content site

#1 Make awesome product pages.

It sounds tough but just decide to build the best product page you have built in your life. Making the most definitive content you can. It’s a product page, so give your link building team something to promote.

Giving the example of stage 3 supercharger kits, they have data, product copy, video, and a gallery. Make your audience want to buy your product. You don’t have to be exciting, you just have to attract people to your content or use FAQ’s to present information that people want to see then tell people online where to find the answer.

#2 Devise unique, genius products

They don’t even have to be real. Using the example of the campaign that is promoting a series of Zombie training camps and Zombie Experiences. This got a link from mashable which you only get if you deserve it. After a tweet by Simon Pegg, the site even crashed for a short while!

Other ideas included piggybacking on a TV Show, a few years ago, Kayak sold seats on Lost’s Oceanic Flight 815 alongside other seats which was also covered on Mashable, CNN, CNET

#3 Get the price wrong. “Accidentally.”

Even though many stores have a clause these days that prevent them from honouring accidental pricing, it still gets a ridiculous amount of links and press coverage.

#4 Make it Embeddable

People want to use your data, so allow them to embed it into their own website. If you have unique content and great data – allow people to use it.

Go to visit Norway – the website is not only beautiful, but the opening graphic is a video that you can also embed.

#5 Understand how your best competitors are attracting links.

How have your best competitors not highest ranking been attracting links? Investigate where they have their back links, replicate it and improve it.

Using the example of AirBNB, simply viewing backlinks, it was established that they had partnerships, reader offers, they host regular meet ups, create focussed packages, and use local activities of interest to build content around.

#6 Make Instructographics

“Instructographics are the new infographics” – how to make a Lego wall was not graphically stunning and could be made in paint, yet it received 46,000 re-pins on pinterest and a huge boost in traffic.

Take the How to culture and turn it into an infographic. Even the least fancy looking How to’s get likes and links:

For more information on the success visit

#7 Incentivise your users with rewards

If you ask people to invite their friend, and give them something in return, they are more likely to invite their friends, not rocket science, but a surprising amount of websites expect users to sign up for the love of the brand.

The example used of going one step further was of a hand written letter, thanking clients that received a stream of blog posts telling people how said clients received a handwritten letter. In the era of digital communication, this sort of gesture goes a long way.

#8 Produce Something of Value and then learn to give it away.

SEOGadget themselves understand that this is not always an easy call as creating tools takes time and effort (and someone has to pay for that!).

A few weeks of development later, SEOGadget created a Google Adwords API extension for excel then gave it away for free. So far this has attracted 6400 downloads and 184 links to the site.

Think about you can add value to a conversation and give it away.

#9 Translate the Good Content and Place it Overseas

Once you know it works in one language, you can translate it which as it turned out was also a good idea.

SEO Gadget use Google translate to translate the content with an apology at the start and the original language at the bottom or use a cheap good translator to create info graphics and content in other languages.

The result? A wider reach and many more links.

#10 Scale Your Outreach / Guest Posting

Learn how to scale. Reach out to bloggers, content networks, look at their social profiles, and reach out to the influencers.

At every stage of your outreach process think about how you’re gathering your data, how you’re scraping for it, how you are using your tools such as excel and buzzfeed, followerwonk, blogger linkup, boomerang, myblogguest to find links and contacts

Check out the slides from State of Search blogger Jon Quinton’s “Link Building Lessons from Swiss Toni”

#11 Create beautiful articles

Add value everywhere! If you’re going to do outreach, simply create something of value and get it placed. There is no point in messing about. Do the job right, and then a publisher will be asking you if you have any more content from their site

#12 Clean up after yourself.

Own your content. Using the example of an infographics that was created a year ago. SEOGadget are still building links from the content. Often site owners do not attribute ownership, so by searching for the graphic itself, and finding out where it is placed, you can contact site owners to make sure that they site you as the source.

My Blog Guest also has an infographics section for people to use, so you can write your own description so that others don’t

# 13 Make (Inexpensive) viral / great content

You don’t have to be smart, you have to be determined. Make cheap inexpensive viral content and learn from it.

Simple example coming from a quick quiz – how much of an energy drink would it take to kill you –  – could be built in a matter of hours.

“509 root domains says I don’t care if I die”

Practise, make more, make them better each time keep it simple

Examples – bedjump, memes, fakeout photos

#14 Find out who linked to that last product, and tell them about a new one!

Often, e-commerce sites will link to a stock page rather than find a new product. Write to them; tell there is a new version

#15 Clean out the Garbage

If you’ve links check that they are still live, make sure you are maintaining coupons, keep on top of things but do not do this!

All in all a great session. If you want more e-commerce tips – check out the ‘SEO for e-commerce’ coverage of the talk from Barry Adams at Think Visibility


Written By
Jackie Hole is an Award Winning Search Marketing consultant specialising in Paid Search, Conversion Improvement and Organic Search / SEO for the USA, Canada and European markets. Starting out in Multimedia & Interface Design, Jackie has over 15 years experience in online marketing and was recently awarded European Search Personality...
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