SEO: How to Build Backlinks Organically

Building effective backlinks are arguably the best thing you can do for your site. But it is getting more and more complex each day because the Google team is always working to fish out any tricks that people use to rank too fast too easy. Not long ago, building links were simpler; you would submit a few articles to authority sites, part with a little cash, and get a lot of backlinks leading to a high page rank. This article on SEO: How to Build Backlinks Organically might help you with your dilemma.

Ever since Google did the Penguin update, however, such tactics do not work anymore. In fact, they might do you more harm than good. For instance, when Google realized that people were using private blog networks to increase their PR, they came up with the PBN deindexing update and sites that had been in that game got really low rankings.

In short, every time a backdoor for getting easy rankings opens, the Google team will change their algorithms. Yet one thing that isn’t about to change is that organic backlinks are a crucial SEO factor. So, which is the sure way? First things first, you have to understand how search engines work.

How Do Backlink Pre-Search Engines Work?

Search tools like Google are designed to rank pages in search results basing on the domain authority. That is the number of links both to and from your site (mostly to), the age of content, size, popularity, and other trust-related indicators. Unfortunately, search engines do not reveal their algorithm for ranking pages. But we have a clue.

These metrics are measured on a scale of 1 to 100. Here is a chart from Neil Patel:

Basically, each backlink to your site is taken as a vote of confidence. The more you have other sites linking to yours, the more you appear to be trusted. But the links also have to come from trustworthy websites to improve your rank. Avoid links from low-quality sites.

Then, of course, your content must appear to be as relevant as possible. I bet you already know that. There are several Website Authority Checkers out there to help you gauge whether your efforts are resulting in progress.  Now about the backlinking strategies.

Strategies for Building Backlinks Organically

SEO strategies are all about making yourself easy to find organically by your prospects and customers by having highly converting keywords. Then, for building backlinks, the most crucial consideration is to have relatable content. Refer to the RAID test concept for effective backlinking:

  1. Relevance: the source linking to your work must have relevant content that compliments your own.
  2. Authority and Influence: is your link source an authoritative and influential one?
  3. Diversity: By adding links to your web presence, are you diversifying and strengthening your digital footprint?

Every backlink you build should be able to pass the RAID test if you want to be successful. If you understand these basic concepts, you can now start building backlinks that add value. Here are the top strategies:

Associate Yourself with Great Content and Relevancy

Having epic content can never be stressed enough. Ensure that you write things people actually want to read. And don’t stop there. Make it unique and captivating. How can you do that?

1.    Create Controversy

The good thing about controversial topics is that they always grab people’s attention. Just don’t go too far or it will backfire. You will always create lots of successful backlinks to your site with a strategic controversial story. For a start, you could join a forum and post something fairly active.

2.    Viral Content

To get many links to your website, you have to create content that readers are willing to share. Don’t just make assumptions. Go through posts from other people that went viral and steal their strategies. Your content will be shared much faster if it is helpful, valuable, and mind-blowing.

3.    Write Case Studies

These are things that you have been following and observing for a while before writing a case study. You will enjoy a lot of attention from sites that would like to incorporate such content in their work. This is among the safest ways to obtain organic backlinks because its unique nature will force people to keep on linking back to your site for a long time and the organic backlinks will grow exponentially.

As for relevant content, Google’s relevancy marking scheme is based on three things:

  • The general content (or theme) of the linking domain
  • The content of the lining page, and
  • The relevancy of the backlinks to the domain

There are various tools in the market for investigating a site’s relevancy. For one, try Majestic’s Topical Trust Flow Topics:

4.    Use Facts and Figures

When you state facts on a specific topic, people researching about similar content will borrow some of them and link back to your site. Simple! Take an example from Neil Patel. He includes statistical facts on neilpatel.com all the time:

Social Media

Social media platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter are quite ideal for link building. In fact, this is where you start with your controversial topics. Then add a link back to your site for the full content or for other similar content. Ensure you create a professional profile and be one as well. People like professionals.

Take advantage of Google+ personal profiles too. Google+ profiles give you an opportunity to sneak in a few links for yourself. Just be careful not to overuse them or it will look spammy and probably tank your ranking.

Networking and Active Participation

Places with your potential readers are the best to get seen if you want to be noticed. Hang out in places like:

1.    Q & A Sites

Sites like Quora and Yahoo are a great place to get backlinks. Be sure to give quality and helpful information to the readers. If your answer is helpful enough, people will read it long after you posted and who knows? They might even follow you back to your site because you seem to know your thing!

2.    Conferences and Live Events

It is all about exposure. The more you participate in such events, the more you get noticed and people go looking for more of your work.

Create a “Link to Us” Page or Section

For as long as you have content worth linking to, appeal to your readers to link to more content by using CTA buttons, badges, banners or providing HTML codes that can help them automatically link back to you.

Provide Free Resources

Release a tool that people find useful or run a service for free. People like free things. Try offering such things as a firefox plugin or website tool. It doesn’t mean you have to go learn computer programming to do so. You can outsource. People will come back to your site over and over again just because there is something that solves their problems for free.

A good example is Grammarly. They have provided plugins for Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft office and an app for Windows, though you have to subscribe for premium features.

Guest Blogging

Contributing to other sites is another great way to promote your website. It is an easy way of getting your website to the frontline of a pre-established community. You will have an opportunity to keep on referring traffic and those backlinks you create will also have a positive effect on your SEO.

Don’t stop there, go a step further and monitor your competitors’ guest blogging campaigns. You could use a Monitor Backlinks account to do so. All you need is the site’s URL. That way, you’ll be able to find sites with new opportunities for building backlinks through guest posting. Monitor Backlinks will give you an update every ten days showing the new backlinks your competitors have built.

One more thing: avoid low-quality websites like a plague. They might do your SEO rank more harm than good.

6 Everyday SEO Tactics You Should Start Using

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is crucial for online marketing through organic traffic. The biggest number of search traffic comes from popular comes search engines – Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Google alone processes more than 3.5 billion searches each day.

Only 12 hours into the day when I took the snippet above. What’s more, at least 70% of the total internet clicks come from organic searches that show on the first page. That is why ranking on the first page of Google is so vital to the success of your online business.

For SEO, the biggest problem is that most people learn a few techniques that work and rely on them so much that they don’t ever embrace new tactics. It makes sense; why change something when it’s working just fine?

Well, the bad news is that Google is always changing and updating algorithms. They change their algorithm hundreds of times each year which is why you need to adopt new SEO tactics continually. Otherwise, you’ll rank lower and lower over time.

Use the following 6 SEO tactics on a daily basis, and you should be able to keep up with Google’s future algorithm changes while maintaining a decent rank.

Optimize for Mobile Devices

At least 50% of all Google searches get done on mobile devices. Mobile phone usage has gone up by 4% from last year and although it might not appear to count, 4% of 5 billion mobile users are 200 million new users in just a year. Not so little anymore if you think about it!

No wonder Google introduced mobile-first indexing in March 2018.

If you are yet to optimize your site for mobile devices, you are missing out on a huge opportunity. What you want to do first is to check if your website is mobile-friendly. Google has been kind enough to make this easy. Once you log in to Google Search Console, scroll down to “search traffic”, then go to “mobile usability”, and this should display site-wide results.

Google also gives you a free tool for checking mobile friendliness. At the site’s homepage, enter a page’s URL and run the test. You will receive results showing whether the page you checked has issues and you will be offered additional resources.

Another thing you should do for your mobile optimization is heat test your mobile site so as to identify areas where people are clicking the most on your mobile site. In most cases, the pattern will not be the same as your desktop’s heat maps.

Try Crazy Egg’s heat map tool for desktop, tablet, and phone. It will help you understand how mobile users are scanning your page so you can identify areas that need to be corrected.

Optimize Content for Voice Search

The voice search trend is rapidly gaining recognition in the online market today. According to Google’s blog, 55% of teens and 41% of adults used voice search at least once a day as of October 2014. And the numbers have been rising steadily ever since. In fact, in January 2018, Alphine.Al estimated over one billion voice searches per month.

For voice search optimization, you have to adopt unconventional keyword research strategies. This is because voice searches use natural, long, conversational questions. You can’t focus on short queries anymore when targeting this group.

If you haven’t started optimizing for voice search yet, try out sites like Answer the Public to come up with strategies for voice search. This tool gives you hundreds of questions that people are asking. You put the keywords in the search bar and pick a country, and the first results will look like this:

There’ll be similar results for prepositions and comparisons. This one is for questions and it’s the one you want to work with first. Click on “Data” to convert the information into grouped lists:

Now you can see questions that users are asking concerning the keyword. For my case, I typed in SEO. The content you write should pay attention to these long-form keywords for voice search optimization.

Compress Images to Increase Speed

Big image files will cause your page to load slowly. Site speed is an important ranking factor that search engines add in their algorithms. Google announced in January 2018 that page speed will be used to rank mobile searches too as of July. They recommend a loading time of three seconds.

As the snippet above indicates, the longer your page loading speed, the higher the bounce rate. If you suspect your speed may be low, try using Google’s “Test Your Site” or “PageSpeed insights” to pinpoint the issues. Both tools should be able to give you a score on a scale of 0-100% and provided recommendations.

Use WP Smush Image Compression and Optimization to reduce the size of your images (or any other tool you find suitable). WP Smush is free and will not compromise the quality of your pictures. For Shopify websites, try working “Crush pics”.

Personalize your PPC

Personalization is a term that is gaining a lot of attention in digital marketing nowadays. It’s used to describe the practice of changing your advertisement, marketing message, or landing page details to match your customer’s most probable needs. It is meant to increase your chance of influencing a customer.

You could change the information based on the device someone is using their location or the keywords that directed them to your page. Other factors you can personalize for include demographics, returning customer, and cart abandonment.

Engage the Local Market

Ranking on local SERPs is a huge opportunity to grow your business locally. Begin by going to Google My Business and claim your business. Try as much as possible to get quality links and get featured on local review sites. Also, ensure you get your NAP (business name, address, and phone number) right on all the top-ranked directories.

Perform a health check of your local SEO on a daily basis. And, keep checking to see if there are any Q&As on your Google My Business Timeline.

You should also make use of review management tools to ask for reviews. Yotpo is one such tool you could use.

Keep trying to engage with your local community as much as possible so you can survive in today’s competitive online marketing terrain.

Pay More Attention to the Topics and the Message rather than Keywords

As you already know, the Google team is always changing algorithms to become more sophisticated and fair. Keywords are slowly fading away when it comes to SEO. The 2015 AI implementation by the name of “RankBrain” made sure of that.

Now, you don’t have to rely heavily on simple keywords to define what your content is about. It’s time to start targeting customer satisfaction rather than mere keywords. In fact, keywords don’t even make it to the top-ten ranking factors.

You now have to focus on providing quality content and awesome customer experience through engagement. Try putting more emphasis on broad topics instead of keywords. Put up posts that your target audience will find useful.

Nevertheless, keywords remain a crucial factor because people need to know that they are clicking on contains the information they searched for. That’s probably one reason that will keep keywords relevant for long.


If online promotion has taught us anything, it’s that we need to evolve our tactics constantly. Embrace the changes that technology has to offer or get left behind. Try them, but don’t abandon your other techniques that work.

Top SEO Tips to Get Your Content Found on Search Engines

Whether it is the online world or the physical, when you have started a business, you have to find ways to make it visible to your potential customers. In the physical world, you have marketing materials like billboards, pamphlets, leaflets, flyers, channel letters, newspaper ads, etc. to contribute to your business’ visibility. In the online world, however, the most important is search engine optimization (SEO). So here are some SEO tips to help you get your content found on search engines.

Skubbs

 

The Importance of Search Engine Optimization 

SEO is the use of online marketing techniques and tactics to rank your website high on the search engine result pages (called SERPs). The search engine that most businesses focus on is Google. SEO is an ongoing process that starts with a research on the keywords that are most relevant to your industry. You have to keep researching keywords to refine the best ones i.e. the ones that will produce the most traffic for your business. There are various software tools and SEO best practices that can help you rank your website above your competitors on the search result pages.  

It’s not easy to get your website on search engine’s first page. Moreover, it is even more difficult to maintain that rank once you have landed on the first page. Whether you want to optimize your website on your own or hire a firm to do that, here are the primary SEO steps that help boost a website’s ranking.  

SEO Steps to Improve Your Site’s Ranking 

  • Proper Keyword Research 

Search Engine Optimization starts with keywords. These are the terms that internet users search for on search engines to find some information. You have to know the keywords your audience is using to find your business or industry. For example, if you sell music, the most relevant terms to your industry are music, songs, mp3, mp4, etc. However, keywords are not always that short as there are ones that are referred to as long tail keywords. These can contain two or more words in them, e.g., SEO companies in my town, latest mp3 music, etc.  

A tool called Google Keyword Planner can help you discover the keywords that your audience is using to find businesses similar to yours. The important thing here is that it tells you the “real” keywords based on people’s searches—it does not guess them. You might be a t-shirt company bidding against the keyword “t-shirts”, when on the other hand the planner might suggest that your audience is also frequently searching for “tees” as the keyword.  

The good news is that there are dozens of free keyword research tools available today. Here are some of the best and most commonly used ones:

  • Soovle 
  • Google Adwords: Keyword Planner 
  • IMforSMB 
  • Wordtracker Scout 
  • Ubersuggest 

You have to be sure that you incorporate the exact keywords that your target audience is using. It also makes sense here to bring in voice searches as a lot of people are now using their own voice to search for things on the internet. It should also be taken into account that how people type sentences/words usually differ from how they would speak them.

For example, on a keyboard, a user might type “plumber in New York City” whereas the same user might use his/her voice and perform the same search by saying “find me the best plumber in New York City”.  

  • Proper On-page SEO 

On-page SEO means the techniques and tactics you use on your website to rank high on search result pages. Let’s break down on-page SEO into many of its integral components. 

Title Tag 

Your title tag is the utmost part of on-page optimization because the title tag is the one that appears in the search results based on the searched keywords. A Moz survey revealed that 35 SEO leaders out of 37 agree that the usage of keywords in title tag is of utmost importance.  

Its Guru

URL 

Good URLs (or slugs) are the ones that clearly define what’s on the page that a user is viewing. Its relevance with the content of the page is crucial for SEO. It also shows how orderly your website content is stacked which is a sign of excellent internal linking.   

W Promote

Content 

Content optimization means a lot of things. First, your content has to be relevant to the page URL (slug), the title tag and any anchor texts that are directing visitors from other websites to your web page. Second, it must provide users some value and contain keywords that are relevant to the search of the user. Keyword stuffing is a sin that Google will penalize you for. Structure your content under H1, H2, H3, etc., headings and subheadings to make it comprehensible for search engine crawlers.  

Colorado EDU

Image Optimization 

The first thing to do to optimize your images is to put only high-quality images on your web pages. High quality should not mean large file sizes; work to find the right balance between good quality and the right file size. Use proper alt (alternative) attributes to describe your images. Your alt attribute should be so good that if your eyes are closed and someone reads the tag to you, it should form a clear visual of the object in your mind. Think of alt attributes as the signboards for web crawlers.

Take the example of this image:

Motor Trend

A bad alt attribute for the image above would be “a convertible car” whereas “a convertible 2015 Ford Mustang with removed rooftop” would be an excellent alt attribute. 

Meta Description 

A meta description is the text you see under the title of your page on the search engine results page, and it’s best to have it under 300 characters. It shortly explains what’s on the page i.e. what the page’s content is related to.  

Thrive Search

 

  • Sensible Keyword Tracking 

Once you have optimized your web pages and incorporated the right keywords within your content, you have to track the performance of your keywords. Why you want to do that is because you will have to separate the “performing” keywords from the “non-performing” keywords. You should base your marketing campaigns around the keywords that are giving you the most traffic. In addition to that, you have to categorize your performing keywords into two sections as well: traffic-producing keywords and converting keywords. The best keywords are the ones that convert.  

You can use a variety of software tools to track the performance of your keywords. These softwares are called keyword trackers, and there are many of them for you to choose from. These are some of the keyword rank trackers, in no particular order:

  • MOZ 
  • Ahrefs 
  • Rank Tracker from Link Assistant 
  • SEMrush 
  • Advanced Web Ranking 
  • RankWatch 

You can try their free versions and trials to know which one you like the best. Here’s what a typical rank tracking software’s interface looks like: 

Business 2 Community

Final Words 

The best thing about Search Engine Optimization is that it is inbound marketing—it is the type of marketing where you don’t interrupt customers or even approach them. Your website acts as your base, and your tool to lure your audience on your website are contents that are high-quality and SEO optimized. Despite your great efforts, you need to be patient before you notice considerable volumes of traffic flowing on your website. Keep tracking your progress in the rankings and take note of factors that are boosting your rank. In the end, the aim should always be to land your website on the first search engine results page. 


Read more about Inbound Marketing on our post about the key elements for a successful lead conversion.