5 underused link building tactics for small businesses

February 23, 2017 - 4  min reading time - by Matt Janaway
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Link building is one of the most important aspects of SEO and if done correctly, will help improve your website traffic. If done incorrectly, it can have a detrimental impact on the visibility of your website. For this reason, many businesses steer clear of link building.

By using effective link building tactics, you can boost the rankings of your website. In turn, this makes your business more discoverable online and increases your exposure. Impressions, visitors and even revenue should all increase.

SEO and link building should be considered long term strategies. When done correctly, you can start seeing Google Analytics charts like this:

Capture d’écran 2017-02-20 à 16.16.14

So what constitutes a safe link? I cover the topic here and try to update the page as often as possible.

There are many link building guides around the internet, but they can get quite complicated if you aren’t in the profession. So I put together a collection of five underused tactics right here for you to sink your teeth into.

Get your existing business connections to link to you

Networking is an effective way of generating business contacts. When you have a plethora of contacts, you can use them to your advantage. Every contact you have will have a load of contacts you don’t have. These connections can be a window for your business to gain more coverage.

Now, let’s relate your business network to link building. Finding genuine websites and getting them to link to your website is crucial, so get your existing contacts to link to you – do whatever it takes. Having said that, sometimes just asking them nicely is enough to get what you want. If they ask, you could also link back to them, so everyone wins (reciprocal links won’t hurt you unless you unless you overdo it, as with every link building tactic). Linking out is a great way of showing that your website’s content can be backed up by other sources.

Think about every other business you use within your own business. Get in touch with your electrician, your window cleaner, your accountants, your suppliers – everyone! These are the kinds of links you should find easy to attain.

[Case Study] Optimize links to improve pages with the greatest ROI

Over a period of two years, RegionsJob tackled the challenge of improving its ROI by fine-tuning the internal linking structure of its website in order to create an efficient architecture. This strategy concentrated on SEO actions that supported the website’s goals. Based on KPIs for page profitability, RegionsJob implemented modifications that would create a website with a better user conversion rate.

Build links with images

Images are a brilliant way to build more links to your website. Many business owners aren’t aware that this is a useful link building tactic. However, it is, and you should use it as much as possible. If you have original images on your site, then you should make them available for reuse. In doing so, other people can use them and put them on their website.

The key is making sure they have to attribute the source of the image (you). Therefore, they need to link back to your site whenever they use it. Of course, you can only do this with original images you’ve created. So for example, things like your logo or photos of your office.

One great example of this is if you have a unique or interesting product, like Furl. They make super-interesting space-saving furniture and allow other websites to show off their images with a link back to their website. Interior design blogs love this! So far it has generated over 35 links for them.

Unique Log Cabins did a similar thing, albeit on a slightly smaller scale. So far their image link building strategy has gained them 9 backlinks.

Run contests on social media

First things first, if you aren’t using social media, you should be. You can use social networking sites to build links. How? By running contests for your followers. Make the prize something useful for other businesses – not consumers.

It’s simple, all you have to do is offer a prize in exchange for something. In this case, what you want is a link from a company website or blog. Tell people that they have to enter the competition by following you on social media, and sharing a link of your choice. Not only will you get lots of backlinks, but you’ll also gain followers!

Create a blog on your website

Blogging is something that’s criminally underused by small businesses. You see big companies use blogs all the time for marketing purposes. So, why aren’t small businesses following suit? A blog is an ideal place to generate lots of internal and external links. You can link to pages on your website within your blog posts which can help with the internal link architecture of your website.

The better the content on you blogs, the more likely they will generate backlinks from other websites. There’s more chance someone will share a link to an interesting blog post than a standard web page.

If your blog content is worthwhile enough, it will generate organic and natural backlinks without you having to go out of your way to build them.

Get your business in the news

It can be fairly easy to get news coverage for your business. There are so many news outlets out there; you’re bound to find a local reporter that’s willing to write a story about you. Naturally, there needs to be a story to write in the first place. So, the first task is for your business to do something newsworthy. Ideas include sponsoring a local event or donating money to a local cause. Remember, offline marketing can have an impact on SEO.

These two recommendations will get you news coverage, and you’ll find the story all over local news websites. When your brand name is mentioned in the story, it might include a link to your business website

Basic link building isn’t as hard as some businesses think. However, if you make good use of it, it can have a positive effect on your company.

Matt Janaway is CEO of Marketing Labs and a successful Entrepreneur specializing in digital marketing, based in Nottingham, UK. He started his career journey during the mid-2000’s internet retailing boom by developing 10+ eCommerce stores which enjoyed great success using a successful and evolving SEO formula. Follow him on Twitter @MJanaway
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