If you have taken a very long vacation from SEO and link building – I mean, VERY long vacation – you may haven’t heard that the rules that you were playing by for years have dramatically changed. It was fairly simple, at least in theory: get as many links as you can with exact anchors that you’re trying to rank for from as many different places as you can, no matter which places. Now even the theory is complicated: get quality links, build quality websites, make quality (diversified) anchors, have quality social signals – and the very definition of “quality” seems to vary from one SERP to another, from one SEO guru to another… It does get overwhelming.
But as far as the link building goes, things can be very simplified if you want: don’t just build links anywhere, anytime and anyhow. Links that will always be valuable, links for the future, are those that don’t just send the link juice – they send visitors as well. That means, no links from the blogging platforms that no one reads, no links from crappy article directories or low quality web directories – in short, no links just for the sake of links. No links for SEO – because they won’t do any good to your SEO.
To put things in perspective…
In the early days of the Internet, links were used as a means of transportation, to get you from one place on the Internet to another. That was the time before Google. And Google now wants to bring back the true purpose of links: to make them back into the way of sending the real visitors from one website to another.
That’s the real reason why there’s so much talk about getting links from relevant websites: it only makes sense that a reader of a blog about healthy nutrition is going to be interested to follow the link within a guest post to check out the small website about the health benefits of apple vinegar. And he qualifies as “targeted visitor” too, so it’s a win-win situation. On the other hand, that same visitor probably wouldn’t click on the link that leads to a real estate website – and even if he would, he wouldn’t stay there very long, hence no win for anyone.
It’s not that scary. It’s just different, and you can do it
Every single link building technique and platform that you’ve ever used – still works (as long as it isn’t automated). The only thing you need to change is your approach – and I know, it isn’t a small thing, but the sooner you realize what you should do, the better.
Forums – instead of finding thousands of forums on which you can leave a tiny link in your profile, spend that time in finding a handful of good forums where people interested in your topic gather, and get involved in the discussions. Yes, with real people. Because the real people will get to know you, and you will be able to get them to visit your website if they see you as another real person who happens to have a website.
Article directories – well, instead of submitting one spun article to hundreds of directories, spend that time writing one useful article and submit it to one good directory. Or, while you’re at it, why don’t you send an email to a blogger in your niche, and present him/her with the article? You can end up with a strong and relevant link that will actually send you visitors, done in approximately same amount of time, and worth a lot more.
Blog commenting – don’t be a troll and don’t leave comments without reading the articles. You aren’t going to get any SEO value out of it, and you certainly won’t make any friends by doing this. Make meaningful comments that – again – could interest someone enough to check your website out. If your comments are really good, you could score a guest post opportunity.
Now, these were only the spammiest of all the spammy spam techniques used to rank websites in “the days before”, just to show how they can be turned into something useful. And if you get creative having in mind that your main role now is to serve your community (although it sounds like you’re learning to be a cop and not an Internet marketer), there’s no limit to what you can accomplish with your link building.
About the Author: Nicole from Moldbusters, is online marketing consultant for a many small business clients, including some ecommerce website owners. Here she explained us how important is to build links the natural way.