Beginners Guide to Link Building

My passion is Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and I want to share it with you. When I first got involved in SEO back in 2007, I spent all of my time on the internet reading everything I could on the topic. I learned so much, but in the beginning I have to say that some of the advanced SEO websites out there, simply went way over my head. I am creating this website to not only be an outlet for all my thoughts, opinions, and case studies, but to also to help all the beginners out there to get started in SEO.

Beginners Guide to Building Links

Now that you have done all your keyword research and competitor analysis you can begin your external marketing campaign. At this point, I am sure you are aware of the importance of building backlinks to your website in order to to increase positioning in the SERPs. It seems simple enough, but one who is currently building links knows the challenge in acquiring quality back links.

There are a lot of great tools available to assist with your link building efforts. One of my favorites being Open Site Explorer. A great place to start is analyzing the back links of your competitors who are already dominating the search engine result pages for keywords you want to rank for.

Where to Start:

Back Link Analysis

  • Use a tool like Open Site Explorer or RavenTools to aggregate the back links of your competitor. Open Site Explorer provides a Domain Authority scoring on each site.
  • Pull that data into an excel spreadsheet and sort by Domain Authority in order to isolate that competitors’ highest authority links. Now LATHER, RINSE, REPEAT.

  • Pull in as much data as you can a number of your competitors and create a spreadsheet for your link building opportunities. Attempt to reach out to these webmasters and see if they will also link to your website. I know it can take a lot of time to obtain contact information for these website site owners, and if you don’t have the resources of an amazing SEO team at your disposal do not panic!
  • A great way that I have found to obtain contact info for webmasters is utilizing Amazon’s Mechanical Turks. I usually pay just .05 cents a record, and have them obtain 2 forms of contact for website. If it’s a really good website, I even go as far as acquiring their twitter account info. Social Media stalking for links is sometimes necessary and sometimes pay off big time!

    How to Link:

    People who don’t have experience in SEO don’t know the importance of anchor text when someone links to your website. To brake it down for all the beginners: –>This link to my about us page is using the anchor text: about me.

  • If you have a new website or are just starting out you want to link to your website with branded anchor texts. For instance www.mydomain.com, http://www.mydomain.com/, or My Domain. It has always been said that 60% of your backlinks should be for branded anchor texts. However, since the Google Penguin update, it is being said that the ratio of branded anchors to keywords should now be even higher.
  • If you come across a highly relevant quality website that is willing to link to you and you want to use one of your main keywords as the anchor texts that is fine. The rule I also follow though is this, for every keyword anchor text link you build, build two more branded links. This will help insure your ratios stay in line with what G wants (or G thinks looks most natural).
  • I have given you a good place to start your link building campaign. So go get links, and remember that persuasion is key.
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