Today, blogging is not all about just writing what comes to mind. Your topics, keywords, and the quality of content you publish matters. There’s a difference between starting a blog to write and to make money. Odds are if you’re reading this, you’re in the latter.
With 76.3 million blog posts going live every month, the blogging landscape has become more competitive than ever before. However, content and social engagement alone won’t help you get traffic consistently. You need visibility and trust that comes with high-quality backlinks from reputable websites. Unfortunately, as a new blogger, link-building can be overwhelming and daunting at the same time.
We’re going to show nine ways on how you can implement new link building strategies to your workflow.
Table of Contents
1. Original Research
Original research allows you to provide unique statistics and data on a specific topic of your niche. Anyone who is writing about the same topic you covered in your research will have to link back. In addition, publishing original research gives you around 49% more backlinks. Your outreach efforts will go a long way when building up your network, which you can use to get more backlinks.
Original research takes a lot of time and effort to create. So, how do you go about identifying these questions and deciding how to answer them? Here are a few examples:
- Identify potential topics of your niche. Compare them on Google Trends to see how popular they are. For example, you’re wondering which topic would perform better between affiliate marketing and social media marketing. A quick search on Google Trends shows us that affiliate marketing is a trending topic:
If you’re keen to write about social media marketing, though, you may want to try researching different long-tail keywords for that niche and see if any of them are trending. For instance, social media scheduling tools is an example of a long-tail keyword, which also has higher intent than social media marketing alone. Using this example, you could write an in-depth guide on various social media scheduling tools like SocialPilot or Buffer and accomplish two things along the way:
- Provide value to your audience who wants to learn more about scheduling social media posts
- Make affiliate sales by connecting them to the resources and platforms you recommend
- If we go back to the affiliate marketing topic, you’ll see that it is a rather broad subject. Therefore, you need to narrow down and focus on a specific area that most people are interested in, which is primarily done by using long-tail keywords. Head over to Buzzsumo to see the most popular subtopics:
As you can see, your research study topic will cover affiliate marketing for beginners. It’s more focused, and it’s a higher intent, long-tail keyword.
Here are the three options you have when creating original research:
- Conduct an experiment, testing different strategies a beginner might use to succeed with affiliate marketing. It could also be a strategy you already tried, that may or may not have worked out as you expected.
- Form a theory for a particular issue relevant to beginners, look for data, identify patterns, analyze them, then publish your analysis
- Conduct an online survey to know what beginners are struggling with, analyze the data, and then publish it.
2. Expert Roundups
These are posts that highlight expert views on a topic that your audience cares about, hence boosting the reliability of your niche. When you connect with these experts and request for their insights, be sure to lasting form relationships with them, and not just for a short term win.
Ideally, the professionals you interview will share your post with their audience on social media and email lists, giving you more visibility. Mention their subscriber count to leverage social proof when you cross-promote. That way, they’ll more likely want to check out the content themselves and know that their time won’t be wasted. These people might also include a relevant link back to your site when writing content for their readers.
Another type of expert roundup involves talking about a topic and then highlighting experts to add substance to your content. Here’s how to get started with your first expert roundup:
- Identify a question that your audience is interested in and one that professionals would want to answer. It could be a problem they are struggling with, but haven’t found a solution yet.
- Identify relevant people who will answer your question. Your ideal expert should have an audience of their own, be recognized in your niche, and sharing great content.
- Reach out to experts by scheduling an email blast with your question. Compile the answers you get and write a blog post.
- If you can’t get a response using an email, try cold calling your prospects, keep it simple, and just ask for a meeting. This works far more often than you’d think.
- Once you publish the post on your blog, share a link with them.
- Promote and repurpose your post on social media or other online forums of your target audience. Try providing relevant answers and quoting what the expert said concerning the topic. In places like Quora or Reddit, for example.
3. Guest Blogging
A few years ago, bloggers would only contribute to other sites in exchange for a link to their website. Fortunately, Google caught up and started punishing websites that publish guest posts for links alone. Using guest blogging to earn links today is not an offense, as long as you follow the rules.
Here’s how to get started with guest posting:
- Identify the websites which accept guest posts. Start with a simple Google search.
- Narrow down your results to relevant sites of your niche. Expand your list by looking for sites that are related to your blog topic. For instance, if you’re writing about personal finance, look for related websites that accept guest posts on topics such as business, entrepreneurship, or parenting.
- While most blogs have a “write for us page,” others leave these out. They often do this to reduce the number of low-quality guest post requests they receive. This quick search on Google will help you find pages related to guest blogging for a specific site:
site:exampleblog.com guest post
- Come up with relevant topics that you will pitch to the site and follow their guest blogging guidelines. Make sure their website doesn’t have a post on your proposed topics.
With the growing remote workforce, there’s a solid chance you might need to do some researching to track down the right person as they could either be in-house or an outside contractor who manages their blog.
- Once you find the right person, send them your pitch, and be sure to follow up. Once your suggestions are accepted, try to submit the writing on time.
- On the day it goes live, don’t forget to respond to comments, and help the site owner to promote your post. Don’t just disappear. They helped you, so be sure to help them in return and boost the reach of the post. That way, it will benefit both sides.
Written content alone won’t give you the backlinks you need. That’s where infographics come in. They tell stories faster through charts, graphs, and icons, hence improving our ability to understand and remember the information.
Infographic templates make it easier to create engaging infographics around popular topics for your niche. You might even decide to break down a complex subject by explaining it using an interesting graph. You can also create an infographic and then offer it to a site owner to post it on their website.
5. Custom Landing Pages
Custom landing pages allow you to improve your rankings and conversions. For instance, you have a target market of low-scale businesses, but two different offers. You don’t have to go out of your way or hire an expensive developer to create vastly different landing pages for each offer. You can take one landing page and then swap out the copy based on the proposal.
Besides segmenting your audience with targeted offers, one of the highest converting strategies available is incorporating long-tail keywords.
Housecall Pro, for instance, includes long-tail keywords relevant to each audience segment they target.
In addition to better rankings and improved conversions, your custom landing pages can also help you earn backlinks. For example, on this PandaDoc page for proposal software, they provide precise statistics.
People will cite these numbers and link back to the previous page, generating more links from a page that would otherwise be hard to work with. Other ways would be including social share buttons on your landing page and sharing it with influencers or bloggers.
6. Competitor Research
Since your goal is to have a higher domain authority than other bloggers of your niche, identify sites that are already linking back to them. If you’re in the VPN niche, for example, you can start your research by seeing what competing domains your site has.
Competitor research helps you understand who you’re competing against and identify what you need to outrank them. If another blogger has 1,000 backlinks to their site, then you’ll need more backlinks than them to compete effectively.
You’ll also know what’s helping them rank through the number and quality of sites linking back to them. Once you analyze this information, identify the content they might have posted on the website and aim to create even better content to get a link from those same websites. For example, look for content gaps that a website is missing, since these will be a prime opportunity for your site to rank.
Podcasting allows you to get access to audiences that prefer audio content over reading it or watching videos. According to Statista, there are 86 million podcast listeners in the U.S. alone.
Most podcasts include a transcript after the show with relevant links pointing to the information that was discussed on the show. When you appear as a guest, you have the opportunity to get some of those links pointing back to your site, which will help you build a good backlink profile.
Not only does appearing on a show and hosting your own podcast boost your backlink profile, but it’s also an entirely new traffic source to tap into. When your podcast starts to rank, you can expect a healthy amount of traffic to your site as your audience keeps growing.
8. Invest in Relationships
In addition to creating content and promoting it, build relationships with influencers and website owners to help you earn more links pointing to your website.
Focus on giving more than asking for favors. Write a roundup post and include your partners, identify broken links on their site, and share their content with your audience.
Once you do this consistently, ask for favors that will benefit them. It could be offering your ideas on something they are working on, an exclusive interview, or any other relevant opportunity that comes your way. Your associates will start exchanging the information by including related links to your website in their content.
If you’ve used a product or service that helped your blog do better, reach out to the company with a testimonial. Testimonials increase B2B conversion rates by 20-50%, so they’ll be thrilled and display your testimonials with a backlink to your website.
However, remember to provide relevant testimonials or case studies for the products and services you have actually used. If you’re taking care of a brand or company, be sure to have a customer feedback strategy in place to capture these testimonials from your best customers.
Link building is more than just looking out for new opportunities. Pay attention to the opportunities you already own but haven’t started taking advantage of yet. As you build your visibility, other people will start mentioning you in their content and then forget to insert a relevant link back to your site.
One of the ideas is to set up Google Alerts to help you monitor your brand mentions. Email the author or site owner, thank them for the mention, and then request them to insert a link pointing back to your website or relevant webpage.
Link building can be hard to understand, especially for a new blogger. However, it gets easier when you focus on link building strategies that don’t take too much time and effort. Once you get started with your link building efforts, remember that persistence and consistency will help you earn links at a larger scale.
So, which strategy do you want to focus on right now to earn the first few links to your website?