How to get backlinks

by Corey Hinde | SEO New Zealand

Hint: everything you’ve read so far could be wrong..

When humans are trying to do something or achieve something..

we are often tempted to try what looks quick and easy at first… 

but in the long run, we either stop, 

OR find the better way, which usually involves work and consistency. 

{Which path to take? Image courtesy of Unsplash}

Getting backlinks is probably something you’ve heard about, and it’s likely you’ve tried it.

Because you heard how good it was at helping “boost your SEO” and “get up you the top of Google

And you gave up.

Because…

You read some online BS about how it’s done, you tried it, and it didn’t work.

I get cold emails (code for “who the heck is this, and why are they emailing me?”), begging for backlinks, every single day.

I’d hate to see what bigger longer standing blogs have to put up with!!

It’s painful.

“Hi, I’m blah blah blah and I’m the marketing manager for blah blah blah, we’d love to be able to write something for your blog”

I’ve seen some of their attempts.

It’s all AI (artificial intelligence) BS, spun out of a machine, with some keywords in it, and a link back to their shitty product.

Hey, if your thing was good, people would just talk about it right??

Okay – let’s get to the point….

There are plenty of ways to NOT get backlinks, and the summary point is – cold reach outs begging for inclusion on someone’s blog who you have zero relationship with, is NOT how you do it.

How then?

Actually, let’s go back a step.

SEO – ranking higher on Google, is certainly a worthwhile aspiration.

That first page of Google is where business gets done right?

Well… why not just dominate the local Google Business Profile results then?

Like this client of mine, Michael Anastasiadis the Mortgage Broker:

Same outcome!

(ranking high on Google Business Profile still takes a lot of work and expertise read more HERE)

But – back to normal organic SEO; organic search results on Google search pages. 

Yes, once you have sorted out the technical aspects of your website, and built some good, keyword driven content, getting backlinks IS part of the game.

So… how SHOULD we get these much sought after backlinks?

Remember, backlinks (when other websites link back to your website for any reason), are more powerful when they are related to your industry, and keywords, and if the sites linking back to yours have high authority and reputation, even better for you!

Let’s talk to some experts and get their thoughts on this.

Clearly, getting good quality backlinks to your website requires new thinking.

► Firstly, Moss Clement from Moss Media, a well known SEO expert:

Conventional Link Building Techniques Don’t Scale.

“Many SEOs and content marketers use conventional link-building tactics to build backlinks. They use methods such as guest blogging, replacing broken links, tracking competitors’ backlinks, and the likes. These link-building strategies work, but the challenge is that these methods don’t scale. 

But you will grow your backlinks slowly. Why? Because you will have to send thousands or hundreds of thousands of outreach emails to level up with your competitors. Indeed, it makes acquiring quality inbound links from reputable websites demanding. 

So, since the competition for page one ranking on Google is significantly fierce, you need to scale your link-building effort to maximize results. And one of the best link-building hacks that scale is the “reverse outreach” technique. 

According to Brian Dean from Backlinko, the reverse outreach implies that, instead of you reaching out to web owners for links, they will be reaching out to you.

How? Shift from the conventional backlink tactics to producing valuable blog content that will attract credible inbound links.

Focus on keywords and key phrases that industry experts, influencers, and bloggers search online. Then use those search terms to create content they can refer to, and they will reach out and start linking to your blog/website.”

I really like that thinking from Moss Clement.

Really, he’s suggesting that backlink gathering is MORE about producing quality content, than actually “chasing backlinks”.

In this day and age of Google’s ability to reward quality, I think Moss is on point.

► Another well known SEO expert, Itamar Blauer details something similar in his article about the “teammate technique” here. 

Essentially he says that you need to create great content, then find websites that would need that content, then reach out like a teammate by showing how your content can help THEM, rather than being needy and asking for help.

I think that Itamar has really nailed it with his approach, and his results prove it on his own blog.

Be an expert, make great content, then help others RATHER than simply reaching out in a needy method without demonstrating any value.

Side note here – as I’m sure some of my own clients will read this.

I’ll often get clients to talk to suppliers, partners, and businesses they have relationships with, to request a simple link exchange.  

This is not an epic piece of great content, more of a way for aligned businesses to support each other.

For example – a mortgage broker might often work with a certain real estate agent.  

Not a problem at all to simply reach out and suggest they link to each other, as “people we recommend and work with”.

In this instance, it would also make life easy for clients, and add credibility both ways.

These are still valuable backlinks and could be organised with 1 simple email.

Still do that!

For deeper backlink growth though, its worth talking to some more SEO professionals and bloggers who have large numbers of backlinks and the web traffic to prove it.

► My friend Ryan Biddulph for example.

He has almost 35,000 backlinks!

He’s achieved legend status in the blogging world due to his long standing work ethic, and ability to consistently produce quality content.

When you produce quality content, people will link back to it!

For example… I’ll link to this article now – https://www.bloggingfromparadise.com/7-practical-tips-marketing-blog-right-way/ – because it’s a quality piece about marketing your blog the right way.

It’s right in line with the story of this article, so I’ve linked to it.

Ryan has no idea I’m even linking to this article of his, he’s earned the backlink because he produced a high quality piece of work!

► SEO Expert Anthony Gaenzle had this to say:

Spot on Anthony!

More comments from both Ryan and Anthony:

► Well known online marketer Stewart Gauld makes a good point:  

Don’t forget to network with the right people – a good network of like minded people can be a great boost when it comes time to get good, useable backlinks”

I think the summary point being made by the experts is that the game now is:

“quality content + showing people how it can add value to them = more high quality backlinks = better results on Google.”

Let’s think of some examples to help get your creative juices flowing for your own websites, normal everyday businesses:

Aotea Electric, an electrician company in New Zealand, could write a series of useful How To guides and safety checklists, and share those with suppliers and retailers.  These companies might then link to those resources on their own websites.

BDVair, a home ventilation company in New Zealand, would also prepare care guides and articles about home health, mold, ventilation, heating etc, that suppliers would link back to.  

WickedWellbeing, a healthy eating website business, produces resources about healthy eating, recipes, and gluten free eating.  With a site like this, other health related websites are keen to link to them.  The higher quality resources and pages produced, the more backlinks they get. 

Likewise PureBiotics, a company that sells an eco-friendly cleaning solution.  Tips, tricks, guides on how to clean safely, keep your home bug free, is obviously content in this post COVID world that is of great interest, and people will naturally want to link to. 

Hopefully those examples above help connect the theory, with some practical ideas that might help YOUR business get higher quality backlinks that help you get better results on Google too!

More Resources:

► YouTube Video “How to use links to improve your ranking on Google: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wea0woFP-S4&t 

► A Fantastic link building article here from Julian Goldie: https://juliangoldie.com/7-easiest-link-building-strategies-to-try-now/

► SEO Course for business owners “SEO Unlocked – How to win on Google” https://coreyhinde.gumroad.com/l/IqOCV

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