Do Your Basic Google Panda Homework
Before beginning to even start to think about your backlink profile and linking strategy, you have to have the basics down. Without the basics, links can be ineffective. These are items such as screening and eliminating for duplicate content, having a fast loading website with optimized pictures, writing great title tags, fixing any thin content pages that you want indexed, and also indexing your best quality pages.
It will be extremely hard to rank on search engines if you do not have these on page optimization requirements. Any links that you create will be much stronger with a solid foundation. If these are ignored, you will suffer penalties ranging from small to large penalties that are difficult to recover from. It’s like breathing with 1 lung.
Let’s Start Linking Safely
To put it in short – You need links. Lots of links. Different links. Backlinks are like votes to your website. When you get tons of votes, you win! And quality links. Below are the strategies and guidelines to follow to have success online.
Backlink Variation Suggestions
Use Brand or Conservative Anchor Text: Mass submission links
Use Specific Keyword Anchor Text: For single links
Ex: domain.com or https://www.domain.com or Domain.com
10% Brand/Url + Keyword(s)
Ex: Ask domain.com for a free quote or Please visit domain.com for more details
10-15% Related or Partially Matching Anchor Text
Ex: Your keyword is “web design” then “graphic design” or “seo” would be related
Ex: “web design” could be “web design company” or “web designers”
5-10% Generic Anchor Text
Ex: Find out more here, click here, find it here, for more information visit:
1-2% Exact Match Anchor Text
Ex: web design, massage therapy, wood signs, ice cream shop, etc.
Variety & Branding
Search engines are looking for a variation in your links that mimic a natural backlink profile. This can’t be emphasized enough – vary your anchor texts! Anchor text is simply that highlighted underlined text that are in blog articles. Sometimes they are not a different color or underlined or bold but they can still be accessed by hovering over with your mouse and clicking.
If you don’t know what to use as an anchor text, use your brand name. How does this help you rank for keywords? When you rank for high quality anchor texts, it combines with what is on your website. That is why it’s so important to have super high quality content on your website. Use as many variations of your brand name possible to create a natural looking backlink.
People are more likely to use your website URL for anchor text, making brand name more “natural”. Conservative anchor text is more general, short tail keywords. Use different anchor text. If you don’t vary the anchor text, it will look very suspicious and unnatural.
PRO TIP: If you’re unsure of what to use for anchor text, make up a new related and varied keyword or use any variation of the brand name.
Websites are given a score called domain authority. It is a score out of 100 “points”. If you get backlinks from websites that have a higher domain authority than your score, then your score can raise and in turn your ranking on Google can go up. However, Google knows that a natural backlink profile will have a variation in the quality of backlinks.
High Domain Backlink Examples:
- News websites like CNN.com or Fox.com
- .Gov websites
- .Edu websites
- High Scoring and trusted local websites in your town or area
- High Scoring and trusted websites or associations in your industry
- Big blogs with lots of followers that are trusted and have been around for awhile
Low Domain Backlink Examples:
- Smaller blogs with
- Spam backlink sites
- Lots of blog comments
- Programs that generate links
- Most paid links
Quantity & Ratio
Paying for backlinks usually results in low quality links and empty promises. Press releases can work and creating high quality content on your website can also work for you to get natural backlinks. To be more aggressive, call local businesses or high domain authority sites and ask for backlinks. Try filling out your chamber website or ask for backlinks from a charity or volunteer event you participated in. You can also try getting backlinks from other businesses in the area.
Remember, you may not need hundreds of high quality backlinks. Sometimes less is more. You may be able to get away with just 5-10 per month as long as most of them are high quality. Also think about your competition; if they have a poor backlinking profile, it makes your job a lot easier to surpass them.
Context & Relevancy
You want relevant backlinks. You can get natural backlinks by providing great content on your site. Your backlinks need to make sense for your website. Have a press release that is timeless and get backlinks from associations in your industry, big news sources, local news sources, and promote the keyword that you want to rank for online.
One strategy for high quality links is to create amazing guest posts on relative websites that your customers care about. Then try promoting these guest posts. Use social media and press releases.
Recovering From Backlink Poisoning
The first step is to recognize if you have experienced a penalty. Here's how. Remove or disavow low quality or links that seem like spam. Getting in a habit of doing this every month is a great, recommended practice. Keeping up with backlinks on a regular basis will blast you lightyears ahead of your competitors.