This week is all about Building Links to your website.
We took some time to ask Chris Bates from Octoply a few questions, to see if he could throw some light on link building for small business people.
How important is link building really?
It’s going to depend on the website…
Unless you have backlinks through content marketing, good press coverage, natural backlinks, etc. then without link building your website isn’t going to go far in terms of getting organic web traffic from Google.
The game always changes, but the quantity and quality of links pointing to a website is still Google’s primary way of determining the relevance and importance of that website for any particular keyword. So if you don’t already HAVE them, aren’t willing to EARN them (content marketing), then your only option is to BUILD them.
There are always exceptions to the rules though. Really low competition keywords are easy to rank on with good on-site optimisation – this can often be the case with really local niche keywords. But, typically the “best” keywords out there require you to have a decent link profile.
Where should busy people start with building links?
I would actually encourage them to work on link EARNING, rather than BUILDING links. Produce great quality content, share and distribute it, and attract those links naturally. That does, of course, require quite an effort.
Other way to “build” your own links would be:
- Comment on other peoples blogs
- Participate in forums that allow you to have a signature
- Look for opportunities to write guest blogs for other websites
- Use Social Media; social signals (likes, tweets, etc) carry more and more weight
- Write and distribute Press Releases.
Do you have any insider tips to share with us?
SEO is full of lingo, but it is actually really really easy. If you are a small business wanting to rank on local keywords, it’s often easier then you’d expect. Some on-site optimisation, and a conscious effort to build some links using your targeted keyword(s) as anchor text, and you may be surprised at the results.
My other insider tip would be to consider SEO! I’ve had clients where the SEO they invested in has absolutely made their business successful. The steady flow of high quality leads it can produce far outweighs the cost of it – whether that be DIY time, or money spent on a consultant.
Do you need to hire someone to do it for you?
You don’t need to hire someone to do it, I guess it depends on your determination to learn, patience, and what your time is worth to you. It is easy to do, once you have the knowledge, but you also have maintain that knowledge – or you’ll fall behind.
What should readers do next to start learning about SEO?
To learn about different aspects of online marketing readers can sign up for “The Ultimate Guide to Attracting More People to Your Website” on the Grassroots home page, which includes a section on the 3 ways to get found in Google.
Hubspot offers a lot of great free e-Books and Whitepapers on inbound marketing related topics, including SEO. The full list is available here.