Starting a Link Campaign: 12 Lovely Sources of Links
If you want to consider all aspects of how to plan and develop a strategy for your link campaign then read this blog post; How to Devise A Brilliant Link Strategy in 10 Easy Steps.
Once you know what you are doing you’ll need to build a database of possible link sources, and then create a prospect database so you can manage the link activity.
Analytics SEO creates a targeted database of potential link sources for your website automatically; it also offers you an SEO Campaign Manager and Project Management workload tool to make the process of acquiring links much easier and less laborious.
The following lists 12 great places to try and find some quality link source for your website:
1. Existing Links
Analyse your existing links and see if they can be improved. If sites are linking to you with “visit this website”, or “click here”, or just your website address; see if you can contact the site owner and get the link text changed to use some of your targeted keywords.
You can also find ‘non-linking references’ and ‘no-follow links’ to your site online. Find sites where your brand or website is mentioned but there is no link or where the link is marked as “no follow”. Contact the site owner and make your plea for a nice fat juicy ‘followed’ link.
2. Get Your Competitors’ Links
Why not start with websites that already have relevant and topical links in your market? Yes your competitors!
Piggyback off the competition. Jump on the back of their SEO and marketing campaigns and ride them for as long as you can!
Identify and watch as many of your online competitors as you can. How fast are links to their site growing compared to yours? Which content on their sites is attracting inbound links?
Which sites are linking to one or more of your competitors? Sites that already are linking to sites in your niche usually prove to be a good and quick source of a link.
By using a tool such as Analytics SEO; you can try and get a large portion of each of your competitors’ links. Usually, the sum of all these parts (links) is greater than a single leading competitive player (unless they are such a big brand in your space that shifting them is going to be impossible).
3. Business Partners and Suppliers
Ask your business partners and suppliers for links – they are always a good source of links as they will want to keep your business, and you can usually control the anchor text if not the exact placement of the link.
4. Ask Your Staff, Family and Friends
Many have blogs and will be on Twitter, Facebook and other social networks. They may also know or be married to other website owners!
5. Generic Directories
Analytics SEO contains a long list of quality human edited web directories that add weight to your site’s relevance in search engines. Many of these directories are free of charge, whilst some charge an annual or lifetime fee for a quality link.
6. Niche Websites & Directories
Search for phrases like “submit your site”, or “add URL” and all your relevant keywords. This should find you a nice list of relevant sites that are on a similar topic to your site.
7. Sites that Rank for your Targeted Keywords
Look at a list of sites that appears in SERPs for your desired keywords. Whilst many of these sites may be competitive, some may not be and a link from one of these top ranking sites can prove to be invaluable. Sometimes you can find good quality educational, academic or reference sites, as well as associations, trade bodies and similar organisations.
8. Relevant Blogs
Permanent ‘Do Follow’ links from good blogs are regarded as independent and authoritative and give rankings a boost. Many people also comment on blogs with links back to their sites – but we find that this is a waste of time and that these links usually get taken down. It is better to try and establish a relationship with the blogger in question before posting a link. Analytics SEO prioritises this list by searching for bloggers who have already posted about your target keywords.
9. Social Media
If you are planning to undertake a social media campaign then you’ll need a handy list of social networking sites such as Digg, Technorati, Twitter, LinkedIN and so forth. Most of these links are now “No Follow” due to spamming issues but they still may get picked up by someone who then writes about it elsewhere.
10. Niche Forums
You may also want to start discussions and respond to discussions in forums on to generate inbound links. But don’t be spammy; contribute first and deliver value – then add a link later.
11. Article Creation
If you have the appetite and time for writing relevant content for your website to keep it fresh; then you can also submit it to article directories with relevant links back to your site. We would recommend initially one article a month. Whilst the links themselves may be of modest or little value, your article (if good enough) may get picked up by other bloggers and writers and you may get more links as a result.
12. Press Releases
Write a press release or get your PR agency to do so. Ensure that your PR campaigns contain relevant anchor text for your inbound links and submit to one or more of the online PR newswires and distribution services.
Well hopefully that list will keep you, or your online marketing team, busy for a while.
You can compile all these references manually yourself; write some software to automate the process, or sign-up to Analytics SEO and have all these valuable resources and tools at your disposal instantly.
By: Laurie OToole
CEO and founder of Authoritas. Entrepreneur, SEO and golfing enthusiast!