As everyone knows, if you want to increase the amount of traffic you receive from search engines, you need to build backlinks to your websites. Each link is essentially a ‘vote’ which shows the likes of Google and Bing that you’re a trustworthy site. Because links are so crucial, marketers around the world have come up with hundreds of ways to build them.
Some of these tactics are easy to follow, while others require more obscure work, and some even cross the border when it comes to ethics. The backlink building tactic I want to talk about today is most commonly viewed as greyhat – not totally natural but not totally immoral either.
Just like all other advice I share on this site, this is something I’ve tested across multiple industries and have found to be working well for me. It’s not a tactic that hasn’t been written about before, but it is something that is currently highly effective, which I’ve increasingly been putting to use across my network of sites. Other marketers have their own name for this method of building links, but I like to refer to it as a link trio.
One of the most popular articles on this site is my in-depth guide on fifteen popular ways you can build links to your website. Search engine rankings rely so heavily on links that attaining them is often a very competitive challenge in just about all niches online. While this post contains what I believe to be one of the most effective ways to build backlinks, it is rather simplistic in nature.
The defacto way to increase the number of backlinks to your site often involves tactics like guest posting, article marketing, directory submissions, and even finding link sources by searching through your competitors’ backlink data. Article marketing, for example, simply requires you to write articles for sites like Ezine Articles which are relevant to your industry, and then include a link back to your site in the author bio.
There’s nothing too complex about this, and it tends to work very well in industries which aren’t too saturated or competitive. For every article you create, you get one or two backlinks to your site, and you then repeat the process on different topics, various industries, and across different article directories.
The same goes for guest posting, another common and highly effective way to build links to your site. You write an article for another blogger, include links back to your website, and repeat the process in order to amplify your link count.
As I mentioned in the introduction, some links are more effective than others. It’s not so much the tactic you use to get the link, but more about where the link comes from that matters. Through my own experiments and research, it is becoming clearer by the day that the major search engines are giving more weight to the quality of backlinks you have, rather than the quantity.
Because of this, I would much rather have a site which has 100 powerful, quality links pointing to it, than 1,000 which anyone else can duplicate with ease. Some of the things that make links more powerful include:
Most of this probably isn’t new to a lot of you, but the reason I covered it is because this Link Trio tactic relies heavily on page strength, so I wanted to make my definition of these terms clear.
After trying to explain this tactic to my friend this morning, I quickly discovered how difficult it was to describe in words, so please bare with me. I have tried my best to illustrate it in graphics below, but I recommend that you read this section to help you fully grasp this concept.
The best way to do so, I believe, would be to use an example. The friend I explained this to runs a relationship blog, so I’ll choose some phrases from that industry. Let’s say that I’m trying to rank for the phrase “relationship blog” but also trying to rank my post on online dating advice for the term “online dating”.
First of all, I could create articles on Ezine Articles, Go Articles and other directories, which talk about relationship blogging, and link to my homepage with my desired anchor text. I also create pages on these sites which talk about online dating advice, which link back to my blog post on the same topic.
At this stage, the only strength these pages have is thanks to the domains they’re hosted on. Ezine Articles, for example, is a very powerful domain, so the pages do have some strength, but because they have hundreds of thousands of articles on them, that weight is spread quite thinly. None of these pages have backlinks to them, so the links back to my site aren’t as powerful as they could be.
Now instead of just getting one link per article that I publish to these sites, I can easily make other pages that link to my site more powerful. Instead of just including a link back to my website, I can also add a link to another article I’ve written. In graphic form:
In this example, the strength of the page at Go Articles has increased because it has a relevant backlink to it, from Ezine Articles. Because the page is stronger, it increases the strength of the backlink back to my own website. Thus, for the same amount of work, I’ve created a link which is going to help me more.
You can then take this much further by implementing more free content websites, as shown below:
Although this graphic looks complex, all you have to remember is that every article links to a page on your site, and to an article on another website. It’s important that you don’t link two articles together in a form of link exchange, and you continue to link in a linear fashion. Doing so would minimise the benefits of this tactic.
Of course, you don’t just need to use article directories. You can do this with guest posts, increase the power of pages using social bookmarking services, and even link your own sites together if they’re in the same industry and have different C-class IP’s.
After implementing this tactic very recently for ViperChill, I’m now ranking third in Google for the term ‘viral marketing’ which is both highly popular and highly competitive. I’m sure those of you with some spare time can search through the backlink data for this site and find out how (if you do find it, please note that the work in question was not done by me, and purely for testing purposes).
I would love to hear what you think of this tactic, and as always, I’m happy to answer any questions in the comments…