- True natural links where an author of a site chooses to link to you.
- When the link comes from a big authority site that also has loads of natural links to it.
I was listed on ReadWriteWeb.com - a hugely popular blog which is a PR8 domain, with 1,000,000 backlinks according to Yahoo, and 200,000 monthly readers according to Compete.com.
Here is my link...
I did nothing to get this link but create awesome content. I spent about a day looking up studies that had been done on the effect of website speed in terms of how it effects rankings, usability and conversions.
I put all this information together and in one post had more collated data on the results of various studies than any other post out there on the internet (to the best of my knowledge).
Now in order to get sites to link to you then you need to get them to see your content, so that they can see it is good, and decide to link to it. This falls under two main strategies...
1. Contact Them
Here you try to simply pitch your work to the site and the authors. You could do this by sending in a news tip (many blogs have a contact form or email for pitching them stories), sending out a press release (not the SEO link building kind, one through a reputable PR distributor like webwire or PRWeb), or trying to network directly with authors.
2. Rank in Search Engines
Bloggers and reporters use Google heavily for their research. If you have content which they will likely be researching for particular stories, then if you can rank for the keywords they'll likely search for then they may link to you as a source of information.
So you try to optimize the title of your post so that it reflects keywords they might search for. I prefer to go after a number of longtail phrases in the title to maximize the chance of being seen.
It was strategy 2 which worked for me in this case.
I had the title: 'Effect of Website Speed on Users | Statistics Reveal Slow Loading Times Cost Sites Serious Money'
The title is a bit long, but it does give me a good chance of ranking for countless longtail terms. e.g:
- User Statistics Website Speed
- Website Speed Effect
- Slow Loading Time Costs
- Website Loading Time Statistics
- Slow Loading Time Effect
There's probably close to a hundred different longtail combinations I could be ranking for. I won't rank for all of them, but I'll rank for enough that I'll get seen, and as time goes on and more links come in, I'll rank for more of those terms and rank higher for them.
Since this is something people will likely be researching for a long time this is a relatively timeless article that can be referenced for a long time to come, and I maybe just need to update it once a year.
Its a One Off?
Well there's certainly some luck involved in this pulling off. But you make your own luck. If you keep creating content like this you will eventually get found. I've had links from the mainstream press like the BBC.co.uk and USAToday.com in this way on other sites I run.
Truth is, in this case I was not even really trying to get links, the whole site is currently in pre-launch mode and I am just putting up some content to gain traction. I have not even got the design done yet!
I get a lot better results when I actively hunt out potential linking sites (so option 1 above) and tell them about the content which they may like to link to. I have got links from major sites like Gizmodo, TheSun.co.uk Mashable.com etc. in this sort of way.
There is a hit and miss element to it, but the more times you try the more times you hit, and the power of the link juice is phenomenal (it will raise the rankings of your entire site, not just the page linked to), plus you usually get decent direct traffic too allowing you to grow your readership.
These are the sorts of links Google WANTS to see, and they reward them as such, and I've found it the most powerful way to develop trust with Google.
With all the talk about autoblogging, and quick link building tactics discussed here, I thought it would be good to point out that doing this the natural way by making awesome content, and promoting it in a white hat manner, is still an option available to all of us.
If you want to try, tell me a niche and I'll try and come up with good linkbait article ideas...