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Why Link Building Should Still Be An SEO Priority In 2019

Why Link Building Should Still Be An SEO Priority In 2019

The Moz update on March 5 this year was the proverbial straw that broke GoodFirms’ back.

GoodFirms’ Domain Rankings had gone down, not like spiraling down, but by a few notches – from 48 to 44, and we knew we had to pull the plug on low-quality content activities such as guest posting on lower DAs, half-baked blogs and so on.

For starters, Google, of the many factors involved, uses link quality to determine the authority and relevancy of your site. For example, if Jeffbullas.com is linking one of their articles to GoodFirms’ research papers, or blogs, it means the former is passing link juice to the latter, which is incredibly valuable in Google’s eyes. By the same token, if our blog posts are linking to other top sites articles that are also considered a good thing from Google’s point of view.

So, when things went wrong, we knew we had to re-align our link building activities in keeping with Google’s algorithm. For instance, we had shelved guest blogging on top sites for some time now because it had become a huge pain in our neck. But then, when our DA took a beating at the hands of grouchy Google, we knew, in our mind, that partly our DA crises could be related to going slow on generating high-quality content, whether it was in terms of guest blogs, research papers, in-house blogs and more.

As it turns out, all these strategies help generate quality inbound links.

So, here we go, a bunch of link building tactics we are already using to fire up your link building activities in 2019.

#1. Be game to guest blog

I am the CEO of a Guest Posting Corporation.

Wait! Scratch that!

I am the President of a Guest Posting Corporation.

Ah! Just kidding guys!

But then, on a serious note, I keep using these pseudo profiles to pep myself up and to be on my toes, simply because guest posting is so, so challenging.

Because you pitch. And you pitch. And you pitch over and over again until a few get an affirmative nod.

The point I am drawing home is, though darn difficult, Guest Posting is still a big deal.  So, if you are thinking to take your eyes off the guest posting ball this year (as we did this year) all I can say is: No. Don’t. C’mon no one digs their own grave.

GoodFirms has been milking this strategy for a couple of years now, and it has helped improve our Domain Authority like never before.

To cut to the chase: Guest Posting, which is one form of our link building strategy, is still very much relevant in 2019.

However, as I mentioned above, you need to target only good quality sites – no carpet bombing in terms of your email pitches.

According to an article How to Do Guest Blogging for Natural Looking Link Building on Search Engine Journal, you could take the guesswork out of guest posting by factoring in the following elements.

Guesswork out of guest posting for link building in 2019

Further, you could also find those sites that are into content syndication with other top sites. For instance, JeffBullas.com syndicates content with Business2Community. So, there are chances that your content gets shared on Business2Community as well if you write for Jeff.

In summary:

  • There are content syndication benefits.
  • It’s a scalable form of guest posting.
  • You can take advantage of high-quality content multiple times.
  • It gives you an edge over the competition.

#2. Conduct a thorough post-mortem of competitors’ backlinks

Competitor’s backlinks act as an excellent sounding board. Seriously! Because dissecting those backlinks will help map out your backlinking strategy.

So, no matter what, undertake this exercise first and foremost: Conduct a link audit of competitor sites by Googling top competitors that offer the same or similar products and services as you.

Once you have identified your top competitors, add them to Moz’s Open Site Explorer, or Ahrefs or the SEMrush tool, to get a complete picture of your competitor’s backlinking profile.

Moz open site explorer for link building in 2019

Then export the competitors’ backlink details to a spreadsheet to start an extensive audit in terms of their domain authority, external followed links, internal followed links, and specifically the links that fall in the below category:

  • Links from top URLs
  • Dead links

Links with anchor text opens various backlink opportunities such as:

  • Resource pages
  • Directories
  • Testimonials
  • Case Studies
  • Citations
  • Guest posts

The new Moz feature called “Link Intersect” will help you investigate those sites that link to your competitors, but not to you. This will help you focus your efforts, particularly, on those sites that you are still to crack.

Moz Link Intersect for link building in 2019

What’s more, you can even analyze a client’s content based on their shares, which will give you an idea as to what content works best in terms of audience engagement.

The tool can also be used to find competitor’s Top Pages based on their backlink profile and social engagement. This will give you a fair idea as to what they are doing right in their content marketing strategy.

Moz Top Pages for link building in 2019

The other method you could use is to place top keywords in the Ahrefs ‘Batch Analysis’ to find the backlink sources of the top 200 URLs.

For instance, if you are selling a unique product such as a Spy Camera Lighter – designed for detectives and their like, you may also want to check out other sites that talk about similar spying instruments.

You could use keywords such as security sites or gadget review sites in ‘Batch Analysis’ to fetch links from different sites that refer to this product.

Further, you could produce a backlink profile of the highest authority, trusted sites by placing an Ahrefs filter ‘one link per domain’ to filter out any spammy links.

Once you have the spreadsheet containing the highest authority websites, you could reach out to them for guest posting based on their readership.

Additionally, you could use a simple search such as “author name” inurl: author” to find industry-leading authors on Google and the sites they have got their guest posts published.

#3. Turn brand love into links

If you still haven’t worked on this strategy, it’s time to pull up your socks.

That is to keep your eyes open for online brand mentions.

Why? Because it’s an effective strategy for building links and reputation.

Benefits of turning online brand mentions into links:

  • Easy link generation
  • Associating with communities interested in your brand

If you think about it a little, you will know that this is the best thing that could happen to your brand as you won’t have to put in any kind of hard work, literally, in generating these links.

It could be some sponsored event posting on Instagram or a sports event posted on Facebook, you could just ask the people involved to insert a link for your brand name.

For monitoring brand mentions, you could use tools such as Google Alerts to receive daily alerts on your brand mentions.

Turn simple brand mentions into authority increasing backlinks.

#4. Deliver evergreen content on blogs

It goes without saying: News content has a shorter shelf life. So, focus on creating evergreen content that will always remain useful and relevant to the audience and might generate inbound links for you.

It could be in the form of:

  • How-to posts
  • Ebooks
  • Lists

Don’t forget to come up with a compelling, but SEO optimized title, to attract lots of clicks.

#5. Conduct expert roundup posts

Our website has been trying to build content around expert roundups and it’s working. Recently, we spoke to 10 industry leading experts on how AI and Machine Learning are greasing the PPC campaign wheels, and the results were quite extraordinary. Shares on LinkedIn, for this post, increased significantly. This is because most of the marketers tend to share and even link back to your article.

Expert round up post for link building in 2019

Wrapping up

There you go! Five ways to generate quality links for your brand.

Link building is still important from an SEO perspective in 2019. In fact, high-quality backlinks are the master key to ace organic traffic.

But since every second marketer you meet is trying to do the same it’s gonna be one hell of a job for you to get quality backlinks through guest posts and more. So roll up your sleeves and be prepared to work for it.

Guest author: This is Jennifer Warren, a Content Consultant with GoodFirms, a review and research platform for eCommerce development companies, digital marketing companies among many others.  I enjoy humanizing technology through inspirational content, devouring best sellers, watching war movies, and running behind my sunshine sons.