Are you a business owner looking for quality backlinks for local SEO success? Or are you managing link building activities for any SME’s? Don’t just rely on building local links with guest blogging, social book marking or citations.
We asked industry’s top digital marketing experts to share their own local link building tips and strategies about what they are doing to obtain quality backlinks for local SEO success.
Julie Joyce is the Owner of and Director of Operations at Link Fish Media.
- When building links for small businesses, my main focus is keeping them as safe as possible. That’s not a different focus than for big brands of course but with smaller companies, I think that since they tend to have a smaller link profile where any spam would really stand out, it’s much more critical to do your due diligence twice. Bigger sites with bigger profiles can handle a lot more substandard links usually.
- Some small businesses make the mistake of really diluting their content through optimizing pages for every imaginable keyphrase. I’d much rather see this condensed so that I can build 10 links to 1 page rather than 1 link to 10 pages.
When a site is generating 1000 links a month, a few bad links here and there isn’t usually a problem. With smaller sites where you have maybe 50 linking domains, building 5 crappy links can cause problems. Maybe those links won’t be taken into consideration but you really never know. I try to ask myself whether a link that I’m thinking of building a small site has the potential to take the business down completely. If I think it does, there’s no way I’m going after it.
Marcus Miller is CEO & Digital Marketing Strategist at Bowler Hat.
Link building for small businesses is not easy. The problem is that the kind of links that are easy to get are typically low value. So, hunting easy links is not always the best approach here.
What we like to do is start with a piece of content. Something that has value to your target audience. Let us say you are a plumber. Then this content could be 10 plumbing jobs you can do yourself. Write this piece of content, make it really good and host it on your site. Then, we want to find sites that would publish such content or at least talk about similar topics. Maybe they are home renovation sites. DIY sites. You get the picture. Then pitch a piece of content that is a subset of the main article (maybe one of the tips) and write a really solid article. In that article then link to your 10 plumbing jobs piece.
If you do this well you should end up with:
- branded bio links to your homepage
- in content links to your article with some descriptive anchor text
- more authority
- improved visibility over time
I cover this approach in a lot more granular detail here:
In a way, this is more of a PR approach. But often PR does not always work well for small or local businesses. The readers are likely not in your location so it’s problematic. But it will move the dial on your search engine rankings.
You do need to be careful though. The easier the link. The more chance it will either have no benefit or could have a negative equity. Always start with value. Add value by creating some useful content. Add value to the guest post by linking to something that expands on the topic. Make it a link that real people will click. I covered the pitfalls of link building in a recent article on the bowler hat blog.
In a nutshell: create something of value. Tell people about it. Link to it within high-quality guest contributions where it enriches the quality of the linking article. Think more about whether this works for humans then there is more chance it will help with your SEO.
Mike Moran is Senior Strategist, Converseon Founder, Biznology
To me, the strategy is always the same. There are three parties to every search transaction: the search engine, the searcher, and the search marketer.
If we stay focused on the idea that whatever we do needs to work for all three parties, then we will steer clear of spammy over-optimizing tactics that help us but nobody else, we’ll avoid the mistakes every time. Otherwise, we are always asking ourselves, “What’s Google catching this week?’ Stop doing that stuff and focus on delivering content your customer actually cares about and Google will reward you. That will work for 2017 and every other year.
David Meszaros is Entrepreneur & CEO at Dave Mes
My two best strategies to build more localized links for local businesses are utilizing chamber of commerce websites and networking with other local organizations.
Almost every city has a chamber of commerce site, and they help to promote local businesses. Why wouldn’t you use this opportunity? Asking them in your district for a link costs only a short email, and in 95% they accept these requests.
Networking with other local businesses can produce extremely valuable backlinks for your website, and they are not always your competitors.
For example, if you have an auto repair business, you can cooperate with a car polish service in your city. Both deals with cars but they’re not competitors. People probably want a clean car after a reparation, and during the cleaning process can be noticed other problems with the car. Linking your sites to each other brings new localized links and more traffic for your business.
Mark Kennedy is Senior SEO Strategist at SEOM Interactive
Whenever we get a new client, we like to start with a link analysis of their top competitors for local link building. Not just to get some of the links they have, but to get a feel for their strategy as well. What is the competition doing to earn links, what is their top content, can we improve on it, etc. You always want your own links and link ideas, but a comp analysis is a nice way to get a feel for the market.
And using tools like ahrefs, moz or majestic you can use the intersect tool to find links multiple competitors have (which are usually easier to attain) as well as individual links. Also, always check for broken links, which is a nice way to attain some of your competitor links as well.
Raymond Manley is CEO & Content Marketing Evangelist at Ray Manley
Every strategy builds on one simple task: Asking. The most simple and often overlooked strategy for this is to create a directory of related businesses on your site, link to various businesses, and then ask those businesses if they can return the favor.
Another strategy is to find a site where you’d like a backlink and browse its blog looking for an article that relates to a topic you have created great content on. Contact the website and suggest that linking to your article would make their article even more valuable to their readers. At the same time, invite them to suggest a link on your site. Everyone is looking for more backlinks, so this incentive can be the key to success.
Filip Podstavec is Data Mining Enthusiast and CEO of Marketing Miner
The most important and must-have link building tactic for all local businesses is their presence in local directories and listings. But this so much known tactic so I’ll not count that. So in my opinion, it’s:
- Host or create a local event or contest. Almost every city in the world has business awards for local companies. And most of these events are also covered by various online resources where you can get a citation.
- Cooperate with local influencers. Sometimes people thing in big and see only worldwide influencers which can be untouchable for them. But what about some local influencers? Maybe they know your business and would be more ready to help you with your promotion.
With these latest local business link building tips and strategies from 7 industry experts, we hope SEO beginners, SME owners as well as professional can take full advantage on how to earn local links ethically which is still a ranking factor for Google as well as for other search engines.