Link Building 101: Building A Strong Foundation For Your Site
No one can deny that quality link building is an important part of optimizing your website for Google. In fact, on their own site, Google mentions, “In general, webmasters can improve the rank of their sites by increasing the number of high-quality sites that link to their pages.”
Like anything else, however, there is both a quantitative and a qualitative aspect to the master strategy and those who embrace both will be the ones to reap the benefits of improved search rankings over time. Here are some of the foundational aspects of building good quality links that will help improve your presence:
1. Create that social foundation. LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and especially Google Plus are more than just pretty faces. They each have a high domain authority and are great places to have your website listed. If you start nowhere else, make sure your sites are listed on a wide variety of reputable social media sites for the purpose of foundational link building.
2. Know thy competitors. Make sure that the person who is in charge of your campaign is thoroughly researching your competitors’ websites. There is much to be learned by looking into the inbound link profiles of some of your peers that have a robust presence in Google. In general, a good strategy is to duplicate many of their links from authoritative sites. A good place to start is with a link building tool like BuzzStream.
3. Aim for some .edu or .gov links in your inbound profile. These sites tend to be viewed as important and authoritative in the eyes of Google. That is not likely to change because the links are difficult to obtain and generally not for sale. Do you perform pro-bono work for a regional non-profit association? Make sure your site has an inbound link from theirs. Is one of your attorneys an adjunct at a local university? Get a link to your firm in the university’s faculty profile listing, news brief, or other page.
4. Form good partnerships. Be a regular or semi-regular contributor on someone else’s established website. If you’re a family lawyer, for example, consider possibly trying to partner with established family law blogs like the MacLawyer or DivorceDiscourse. There are established experts in almost every area of law and business that would make for great partnerships and valuable inbound links. It’s also a great way to repurpose some of your good articles and other content.
In short, there is no quick fix to the age old problem of building quality inbound links. The key is to keep a trained eye focused on quality. The quantity aspect will follow over time. In general, you’ll want to stay away from buying links and other black hat tactics that are likely to result in more harm than good.