What comes to mind first when you consider all the aspects of an online business that you could improve in 2023? Of course, there is content, page titles, other technical SEO, and backlinks.
Backlinks are still one of the most important ranking factors for a website. However, 95% of websites still don’t have any going to them.
Backlinks from high-quality websites that are relevant and reliable tell Google, “Hey, this content is so helpful for people that other websites want to recommend it to their followers.”
In short, yes, link building is still relevant to SEO. However, the days of quantity over quality are long over.
What is Link Building?
Link building in SEO refers to the process of acquiring high-quality inbound links (also known as backlinks) to a website. The goal of link building is to increase Google’s confidence that your website can deliver a relevant experience for visitors. Links from reputable websites (such as trade organizations, trade publications, or suppliers) have a greater SEO impact.
Link building has long been a topic of discussion in SEO, but since Google’s Penguin update in 2012, this strategy has come under closer scrutiny due to the increased risk involved. In essence, link building started to be more closely monitored, so there was a chance that your website might actually be penalized if it appeared as though it was trying to monopolize this strategy and negatively impacted users’ search experiences.
Link building campaigns should be approached as authority-building rather than just backlink building. It’s time to consider how to naturally build authority (in the form of backlinks) by producing excellent content, assets, or promoting your company. Create something that users find valuable and wisely promote it rather than paying link brokers or cold-calling websites for guest posting.
How To Effectively Build Authority Links
Giving users high-quality content that meets audience needs is Google’s main objective, and this is something that must be remembered in order to gain authority. Think about how businesses gain the trust of their customers in the real world. They offer high-quality goods and/ or services in order to win customers’ trust. When customers trust you, brand loyalty soars as word-of-mouth advertising spreads.
The same strategy should be applied to link building. Create something worthwhile and concentrate on promoting your UVPs rather than purchasing backlinks or paying websites to post your blog and link back to you.
It’s crucial to keep investing in links that generate income once you’ve established a strong backlink profile. Analyze converted referral sources to find them and then replicate them. Although technically not link building, this involves looking more closely at sources that appear to generate income so you can maximize your investment.
Create a Valuable Asset
Building something that users will link to as a source or tool is one way to naturally increase authority and backlinks.
For instance, your company might be able to conduct audience research and surveying to compile a thorough whitepaper on your industry’s trends. Or perhaps your company can develop a customer-valuable tool, similar to how banks develop savings tools to assist customers in making plans for buying homes and determining how much they need to save.
If you produce something worthwhile and take the necessary steps to promote it, backlinks will naturally follow.
If your company has a PR team, make sure to incorporate your their strategy with SEO. While online newspapers that link back to your website will increase your authority, word-of-mouth will help your brand stay relevant outside of cyberspace.
Asking publications to link back to your website is worthwhile if they are already writing about your company. It’s a win-win situation because linking to your website makes it easier for readers to learn more about your business and increases referral traffic and search engine authority.
Even better, you can start the outreach with the link request if your SEO and PR teams are integrated and working together to achieve the same objective.
Link Relevancy Versus Link Authority
How can you tell if your links are of the highest quality? The authority of the website that links to it and the link’s relevance are the two factors that Google takes into account when evaluating links.
Domain Authority and Links
Use Domain Authority as a practical backlink-building tool to find out how search engines will view your website and how websites for which you are considering requesting a backlink will be ranked. Generally speaking, links from sites with higher domain authority, such as a trade journal or an industry association, are what you want.
Domain authority isn’t enough for Google, however. The link in question must also be relevant (closely connected) to your site’s content. If you’re linked by the New York Times, but that article discusses golfing skills, not business skills, the link will be irrelevant, and may actually hinder your reputation in Google’s eyes.
Authority or relevancy in link building
But which strategy, relevancy or authority, is more important? You need two wheels to make a bicycle run, but you could theoretically balance on the back wheel and still move forward if you had to. Links with high authority are difficult to win unless you can harness high- end publicity to attract those links to your new startup. Until that happens, relevancy is key. Get links from sites that would naturally link to you because your content is aligned.
Quality vs Quantity
Even if the links aren’t of high quality, it might be tempting to go out and gather a lot of links to your website from anywhere in the hopes that the sheer volume of incoming links will improve your search engine ranking.
However, links from low-quality or irrelevant websites will actually impede your efforts to establish your own website’s reputation and harm its search engine ranking. It can be very challenging to get links from popular websites, but you can start your SEO link-building process there by getting a few from relevant websites. Building links is a continuous process that businesses develop over time.
Link building is still important for SEO in 2023. While there are many factors that can affect a searcher’s rankings, correlation studies consistently demonstrate that a site’s capacity to rank for competitive terms is significantly impacted by its backlink profile. The best way is to build authority through natural backlinks: create great content, utilize relationships, become a thought leader, digital pr and other similar high effort endeavors is still important to SEO.