It will be a long time before link building takes a back seat if it’s at all possible. In 2018, authoritative backlinks are still a core SEO factor telling the search engine that your site is relevant and trustworthy.
That said, the essential quality of links has changed. Over the past few years, the SEO world started moving towards natural link building that crowds out all the black hat tactics like link selling and link stuffing.
It this post, I’m going to tell about safe yet effective link building tactics in 2018, give some ideas on where to find backlink opportunities, and show how to choose quality links.
How to Build Backlinks in 2018
#1 Guest posting
Guest posting is the process of writing and publishing articles on the external websites. In fact, you’re providing a blogger with the valuable content for free and blogger, in turn, is helping you:
build your personal brand, make a name in the niche; share your knowledge; let a large audience know about your website/service; generate traffic to your website; get a quality link to your website.
- build your personal brand, make a name in the niche;
- share your knowledge;
- let a large audience know about your website/service;
- generate traffic to your website;
- get a quality link to your website.
I have “quality link” in the last place on purpose. See, link building should never be your main goal when writing content. Articles written with this only thing in mind are horrible. The real guest posting is about quality content first, not about backlinks.
So what do we do?
- Identify popular blogs and publications in your niche (I’ll give some tips on how to do it a bit later);
- Find the editorial guidelines/”write for us” page of this blog. It could be somewhere in the footer or header on the site. If you can’t find it from the first glance, type blog name along with the “guidelines” or “write for us” phrase at Google. If this blog has such page, you’ll see it at the top of the search results.
- Read guidelines carefully and follow the instructions;
- Send the quality article over to the editor;
- Do the required edits;
- Wait for the publication.
Pay attention to what they write about links in the articles. Some blogs accept any links as long as they are relevant and bring value to the readers. Some blogs don’t allow links to sites you’re somehow related to, but they still ok with you adding a link to your site in the author bio.
#2 Shareable content
Another great way to get more exposure, traffic, shares, and links is to create viral content on your blog.
Well, people do like sharing infographics. And the more shares you get, the more people reaches your infographic, and the more sites link to your blog.
Another great idea of a viral content is a study. When writing an article, people are trying to prove the point by showing recent stats. So having the recent related to your niche stats published on your blog may bring you hundreds of natural links!
If we take a look at the study I mentioned earlier, we’ll see that it includes a lot of graphics, charts, and diagrams. Under each graphic there is a small field:
The author engages readers to put these pics on their own blogs and even provides HTML code so that they can implement it easily. The only condition is to include attribution to the site. Thus, people use these graphs in their posts leaving links to the original source.
We can make sure that this tactic is working as this article has 60K referring domains!
So create shareable content like infographics, studies, roundups, cases, evergreen content, ultimate guides. Something you’re sure people would like to share and link from their own sites. This way, you’ll constantly be getting natural links without any additional efforts.
#3 Influencer marketing
This tactic works almost the same way as the previous one: the more people have reached your post, the better chance of getting backlinks you have.
The influencers are people that can give your articles a great exposure.
Why would influencer want to share your post?
- You wrote an interested, unique article/study about something this influencer is passionate about.
- You gathered some interesting stats influencer would like to take a look
- You mentioned influencer’s product/service/website/quote in your blog post;
- You wrote an article that shows different opinion on the topic influencer has covered in his/her recent article;
- You wrote an article that complements influencer’s article;
So if you have something that may be interesting to the influencers in your niche, you can ask them to take a look at your post, and they might want to share it with the larger audience.
#4 Content syndication
There are several ways to promote your content. One of them is syndicating your content to the special platforms. It could be:
- Linkedin publishing;
- Relevant forums.
I named several channels that fit every niche. Additionally, there are a lot of syndication platforms for the specific niches. For instance, for SEO, internet marketing, business niches there are Growth Hacker, Hacker News, Scoop it, Business 2 Community, Social Media Today, etc.
Guys from Scoop it conducted a study that shows how much traffic and engagement syndicating brings:
When syndicating content, you should leave a link to your own site where the article was originally published. It means that you’ll have not only more exposure but a lot of new backlinks as well.
#5 Testimonials, interviews, mentions
If you want your website to become one of the leading publications in the niche, you have to pay attention to your online presence and personal brand. You should strive to show up everywhere and be part of your professional community.
It means that you have to write valuable articles on the external platforms to prove your professional skills, review your niche popular products and services, leave testimonials, give interviews. This way links to your site will start appearing throughout the internet naturally.
For instance, if you leave a testimonial, the link to your site has a chance to appear right on the homepage of the popular service:
Where to Find Backlink Opportunities
#1 Google it!
This approach is suitable for those who want to find blogs for a guest posting. The easiest way to find them is to use search operators. Here is one of them:
your query inurl:write-for-us
This way you’ll find “write for us” pages popular in your niche blogs. Instead of “write for us” you can also search for:
- your query inurl:editorial-guidelines
- your query inurl:contributior-guidelines
- your query inurl:contribute
- your query inurl:send-a-tip
#2 Monitor mentions
Another way to find relevant websites for building backlinks is to monitor mentions of primary keywords, brand name, and your competitors brand names.