Link Building: What Is It, and How Does It Improve Your Site's Stats?

If you're new to search engine optimization (SEO), then you may have heard the term link building come up without being sure of what it means. Simply put, link building is an SEO tactic that helps increase your site visibility by acquiring links from other websites back to yours.

This SEO technique is an essential part of gaining website traffic. But what is it? How does it work? And how can this process improve your site's statistics? This article will answer these questions and more.

What Is Link Building?

Link building is the name given to the process of acquiring hyperlinks to your site from other web pages. The more websites that link back to your own, the better it is for SEO. Search engines also take the quality of other websites into account. So, you should aim to achieve backlinks from high-quality, reputable backlinks.

Of course, link building on its own is not enough to carry your website. You will have to use other SEO techniques as well, such as using keywords, optimizing your website, publishing unique, high-quality content, and more. But link building is an important piece of the SEO puzzle and one that should not be overlooked.

How To Build Links

So, how do you build links? Basically, there are four broad methods of link building. These are:

  • Manually adding links to other sites

  • Asking website owners to feature a link to your site on their page

  • Buying links from website owners

  • Earning links organically through providing useful services or resources to your site's visitors

This section will break down each of these methods a little further so you can get a sense of where to start.

Adding Links

This is perhaps the simplest method of link building. All you need to do is find a website that will allow you to post a link to your own page. Examples of such sites are:

  • Social media profiles

  • Forums, Q&A sites, and other similar web pages

  • Job board websites

  • Comment sections (e.g. on blog posts, Facebook threads, etc.)

Because it's so easy to post links in this manner, hyperlinks featured on these types of sites are not ranked very highly by search engine algorithms. Sure, it's a place to get started, especially if your business is new on the scene. But you should quickly look into other link building options.

That being said, don't completely dismiss adding links to other sites. Even if this method won't improve your search engine performance much, you might still attract customers using this method.

Asking Website Owners for Links

To have the best chance of convincing someone to feature a link to your website, you should have a compelling reason for them to do so. To put it another way, you should consider what you can give them in return.

Perhaps you could offer to write some content for their blog. Maybe you could offer them positive testimonials they can feature about their goods or services. Or, you could offer to return the favor by posting a link to their page or sharing their content on social media.

You should always be prepared for rejection, but if you can provide them with something in return for a link, then you at least stand a better chance of winning their approval!

Buying Links

If you're not able to convince someone to host your link for free, you could always purchase a link from them instead. However, note that there are risks involved in using this method.

For one thing, you could end up spending a lot of money on useless links that won't have any impact on your search engine ranking. Even worse, you could end up having your web page penalized if you unwittingly pay for a bad link.

So, in short, feel free to purchase links from other websites. Just keep in mind that if you do so, it's at your discretion.

Organically Earning Links

The final method of link building is organically earning links from visitors to your website. This is when a viewer is so impressed by your content that they host a link to your page without you having to ask first.

This method isn't easy. For one thing, the content on your website has to be truly excellent for someone to show that level of interest in your page. And for another, for someone to organically come across your page, you'll need to have a decent amount of website traffic. You need to already be utilizing SEO techniques and advertising your page to benefit from this strategy.

What Makes a Link Effective?

As we've already touched on, not just any link is a good link. While it's unclear how different search engines measure a hyperlink's value, there are a few questions you can ask to determine the worth of a hyperlink:

  • Does the website hosting link have authority?

  • Is the link relevant to their post?

  • Where is the link placed on their site (e.g., in its footer, sidebar, content, etc)?

  • How relevant is the anchor text?

If a link is hosted on a website that has authority and is relevant to the content they're posting, it's far more likely to be effective. Furthermore, links that are featured on a page's main contents usually get more clicks than links in the sidebar or footer. Finally, the link's anchor text should be relevant, but it should also make sense, and shouldn't just be a cluttered mess of keywords.

How Does Link Building Help Your Website's Performance?

So, now that we've covered the basics of link building, how exactly does it help your website's performance? This section will answer that question, providing a few key examples of how link building can draw more visitors to your site and increase your visibility.

Improving Your Website Ranking

As we've discussed already, having numerous links from good sources helps you to improve your website ranking through search engines. The more high-quality links you have from other websites, the higher you'll rank — and the higher you rank, the closer your website will appear to the top of search engine results.

Improving your website ranking has a noticeable effect on your site traffic, so it's well worth your time and energy.

Attracting Referral Traffic

On top of attracting traffic from search engines, you can also draw in referral traffic from other sites. For example, if you own a website that sells crafting supplies, and a popular arts and crafts website links to your page, visitors to their site will hopefully find their way to your page.

One significant benefit of drawing in referral traffic is that you can pretty much guarantee your new visitors will be interested in what you have on offer.

Helping Build Your Brand

Link building will also help you to establish and build upon your brand. With so many competing websites out there, it can prove difficult to stand out from a crowd. But if you utilize link building properly to show off your expertise in your field, you'll no doubt find it a lot easier to establish a clear brand that sticks out to people.

For example, if you publish a well-written, well-researched piece of content about your industry and reach out to others to link to it on their page, you're showing others in your field that you know your stuff. If these sites agree to link to your content, then others have the chance to see what you're capable of, too.

Making Connections

Last but not least, link building is also helpful for networking purposes—for helping you make connections with others in your field. Since link building so often involves outreach to other websites, blogs, and content creators, especially when you're just getting started, it presents you with the opportunity to build long-lasting relationships.

Reputation is the name of the game in online circles. If you manage to associate yourself with a popular influencer in your industry, not only can you gain significant exposure, but the visitors to your site are more likely to view your business as trustworthy.

Conclusion

This article has given a brief explanation of link building and has also explained some of the best ways you can utilize this SEO tactic yourself. When you're a new website, it can be difficult to generate traffic. Link building is an essential step to make sure you see plenty of visitors to your web page.

If you're new to SEO, knowing where to start with the link building process can be daunting. If you're looking for advice or assistance to help you get started, consider reaching out to Kokonut today!
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