You may have heard of link building, that’s why you’re here. But what you should know is that link building has changed. Now, digital marketers should be aware not only of the quantity but also the quality of the backlinks they get.
Link building is the process of acquiring backlinks from other websites in your niche. Marketing experts use this strategy to drive traffic to their sites and increase their SERP (Search Engine Results Page) ranking. It’s also a major factor to determine a brand’s authority.
However, not all links are good for your website. Some links can damage and drag your SEO down. By doing website assessment regularly, you’ll be able to manage which links to keep and which ones to disavow.
The “popularity” of a webpage depends on the number of backlinks pointing back to that page. The more backlinks you have, the more popular is your page.
But search engines are done playing the numbers game. They are now focused on the quality of the backlinks present on a page.
For example, you submitted a guest post that has 5 backlinks pointing to your site. For link popularity, your guest post will have 5 backlinks attributed to it.
But domain popularity is entirely different. No matter how many backlinks you place on your guest post, it will only count as one because they came from the same domain. The quality of your links is now more important than the quantity alone.
2 Types of Links
Before venturing into the vast coverage of link building, first, you have to understand the two types of links. These are external links and internal links.
Links that come from other websites (or pointed to other websites) are considered external links. There are 2 types of external links:
Inbound links (aka backlinks) are links from other sites that point back to your webpage. The number and quality of backlinks are indicators of the quality of your content. More quality backlinks mean that your site produces high-quality and competitive content.
Digital marketers value these links above others because it’s a huge factor in SERP rankings. One-way links are particularly valuable because they signal search engines that you product link-worthy content. It’s also a good indicator of your site’s authority in your niche.
While inbound links take the limelight, outbound links are very much underrated. Some marketers say that you should minimize outbound linking because it can drive away readers that are already on your site. But this is not entirely true.
Outbound links are useful for web crawlers. They signal what kinds of resources do you use for your content. Are they trustworthy? Do these resources bring value and depth to your content? Are they relevant?
If web crawlers find your resources relevant and timely, chances are your article will be more favored than the others. Reliable outbound links also add depth and value to your article. This will help gain your reader’s trust because they know that you cite reliable sources for your facts.
Internal links are links from your blog that points back to other pages on your website. These links provide better navigation for web crawlers on your website.
Inbound links are important to make a structured sitemap. Inbound links can be linked to any page on the same domain, whether it’s another blog post or your money page. These links make up your site architecture.
Is Link Building Still Effective in 2021?
Upon the arrival of the Google Penguin 4.0 update, links have been devalued. However, high-quality links are now more valuable than ever. These high-quality links are now the prized possession for every website that wants to rank high on SERPs.
But what makes a high-quality link? Here are the attributes of a high-quality backlink:
- High authority in the niche
- Organic traffic of the origin of the backlink
- Non-reciprocal backlink
According to our link building survey, obtaining high-quality natural links is a challenge for link building professionals. But this is the requirement posed by Google to penalize marketers that use manipulative link building strategies.
But if you manage to pull off multiple high-quality backlinks for your site, your efforts will be rewarded by search engines. You can also outsource link building services to build high-quality and genuine links for your site without breaking a sweat.
Benefits of Link Building
Link building in 2021 is not an easy process. Digital marketers can agree with me on that. And they can also agree that the benefits outweigh the hardships in building high-quality links.
Here are some of the benefits of link building if you do it the right way:
1. Boost Your Brand’s Visibility and Credibility
Establishing high-quality backlinks within your niche boosts your brand’s visibility. This also affects your credibility since links act as an indicator of your site’s authority. If you have more inbound links from niche-related websites, your domain authority (DA) will also increase.
For every domain that links back to your site, you’re increasing your brand’s visibility. By getting mentioned on a blog post from a related website, their traffic can be your organic traffic too. This is true especially if you provide relevant information and content for your host’s visitors.
2. Increase Referral Traffic
Referral traffic is the traffic you receive from backlinks. If another brand from your niche recommends your services through a backlink, you’ll receive organic and relevant traffic.
You should target high-traffic sites in your niche to link back to you. This way, you’ll share the same traffic with the same interests. But this is no easy feat. You have to be an expert in your profession to be credible for these major websites.
3. Improve Search Engine Rankings
We all know that links are a major factor that Google considers when ranking websites. Think of it as a chain reaction.
- By increasing your brand’s visibility, people in your niche will become more aware of you.
- By building links with high-traffic sites, you can get referral traffic. This will be more effective if you provide excellent content that separates you from your competitors.
- More traffic means a higher SERP ranking.
4. Compound Revenue Opportunities
Link building efforts are known to grow exponentially. It’s not a strategy that will bring a huge boost in your traffic for a day. You’ll have to wait months or even years to see your efforts bloom to their extent.
Acquiring valuable links are investments that will bring prospects and potential leads to your site. By placing your link on relevant sites, you’re planting seeds you’ll reap in the future.
5. Build Healthy Relationships Within Your Niche
Since you’re going to talk to other website owners in your niche, it’s a good way to establish a healthy relationship with them. If you build links with these sites, chances are they will also refer you or help you with your link building endeavors.
Doing link building naturally is a great investment, especially if your site is expanding. There are more benefits that you can get by building links in your niche. You can read another article that’s focused on the benefits of link building from our blog.
Helpful Tools for Link Building
1. Ahrefs – Best Tool for Site Analysis
Ahrefs offers a lot of tools that you can use for different link building purposes. The tool has a massive index, reaching up to trillions of external backlinks. You can use their Site Explorer tool to examine and analyze your link prospects.
You can also use this tool to analyze your competitor’s domain and see what websites are linking to them. If those sites link to your competitor, there’s a good chance that they will also link to yours.
The metric used by Ahrefs is called Domain Rating (DR), which measures the strength of the backlinks of a website. A higher DR (100-point scale) means a more reliable and competent backlink profile. Getting backlinks from websites with high DR will make your site rank higher on SERPs.
2. PitchBox – Best Tool for Email Outreach
PitchBox is a very useful tool for your outreach efforts. It’s a tool that allows you to reach out to prospects and talk to them directly. You can also see if you’re talking to the right prospect through the metrics provided by the software.
PitchBox is integrated with other SEO tools like Ahrefs and Moz to give you an overview of the domain of your prospect. The DA and DR are shown for each domain you’re reaching out to.
The software also allows you to streamline your outreach. You can view win rates and response rates of prospects. You can also see which projects are safe and which are critical by managing the pipeline on the software.
3. Hunter.io – Best Tool for Finding Contact Information
If you found a website with incredible stats, and you don’t have their contact details, you can use Hunter.io for this. This tool is very straightforward. You place the domain of your prospect and the tool will crawl its index to find the contact information you’re looking for.
4. HARO – Best Tool to Earn Links from News Platforms
Digital marketers use this site to reach out to journalists and reporters that need credible sources. By creating newsworthy content, you can get featured on news websites. Earning links from reputable news websites will have a huge impact on your SEO.
There are other tools available online to help you with every link building strategy you employ. Read more on our list of the best link building software to use in 2021.
Link building is a tedious process that requires expertise and a huge amount of patience, especially now that it’s relatively harder to gain backlinks. Unfortunately, there are no shortcuts in link building.
When you reap what you sow, you’ll see why link building is still the best strategy to rank on SERPs. That’s why digital marketers still choose to build links naturally rather than resorting to black hat techniques.
If you need help with building links naturally, you can consult our link building agency to aid you in link building.