As you might already know, there are many different techniques involved in Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) that can help your website rank better in search engines like Google and reach your audience more effectively. In the past, link building has been invaluable in successful SEO, but with all the changes and algorithm updates Google has gone through in recent years, is it still as effective and relevant as it has been before? This is what we will be exploring in this article, but first, let’s jump into exactly what link building is and how it works.

What is link building?

Links are one of the ways search engines can determine the value and relevance of a page. This is because if you have a good number of links to other pages (outbound) and even better if other websites are linking to you (inbound), it tells the search engine crawlers that your content is high quality and will be useful to visitors.

Using either inbound or outbound linking strategies can be good but if you can successfully do both, you will drastically improve the visibility of your website and stay on Google’s good side. In industries like ecommerce link building can make a big difference and be a vital force behind the success of a business’s marketing strategy.

How does link building work?

There are a few favourable ways you can build links which are known as white hat link building but like with many online processes, some people use what is called black hat link building. These are techniques that try to cheat search engines, but over time Google has become a lot more advanced and stricter on this type of SEO and will penalise any websites it finds doing it, with little to no chance of ranking highly.

Generally, most link building strategies will involve one or more of the following approaches.

Earn your links

This is one of if not the best ways to build links in the eyes of search engines. It essentially means other websites are linking to your content without you having to ask them to. Links occur naturally when another website perceives your content as high quality and a useful resource for more reading for their website visitors. Earned links can be to any type of content, but most commonly they link to:

  • Original data from research and studies
  • Detailed guides and tutorials
  • Useful tools and calculators
  • Visual content like infographics, diagrams, and charts

Reach out to other websites

Another handy way to build links is to simply contact another website and ask them if they can link to yours. You could reach an agreement to link to each other’s pages whether they are blogs, guides, visual content, case studies, or any other types of relevant content. Blogger outreach and guest posts can be particularly effective ways of building up links that benefit you and the other party.

Manually add links

In some cases, you can add links by going to another website and adding the link there yourself. Some examples of where you can do this include social media profiles, blog comments, forums and community pages, and business directories. Despite this being one of the easiest ways of link building, it is also probably the least effective as Google views it as you promoting yourself. They might not necessarily be the most helpful, but they don’t hurt either and they could be beneficial in other ways like starting conversations with online visitors about topics.

What are backlinks and how are they different to link building?

Backlinks and link building are both frequently used terms in SEO, but it is easy to get them confused. Backlinking is essentially another word for links on other websites that direct visitors to your website, whilst link building is the process involved in acquiring the links from other websites. As mentioned above, both can be useful in their own ways but when it comes to links and SEO, you will likely see the most success if both approaches are used in your strategy as long as you are using high-quality backlinks. This is something a professional link building agency like us can help with.

Why is it important to build links?

Based on what we have covered so far, you probably know what the benefits of link building are and why they are so important. Firstly, it can increase your position on search engine results pages, which is extremely beneficial as in most cases, when users are searching for something, they will only go as far as the top five websites. If your content has quality links, you can get your website into those results. It might take quite a bit of time and effort, but it is definitely worth it in the long term.

Also, link building can help you to grow your organic traffic as if you’re higher in the search engine results, more people will click on your website. So, the more links you can get from reputable websites with a good amount of traffic, the more your own organic traffic is likely to grow. This also applies to links on other people’s websites that are relevant to yours.

The previous points lead us nicely to our last benefit of boosting brand awareness. All of the work you have put into link building and getting your website to a higher point in the search results is all to help potential customers become more familiar with your brand and ultimately make a purchase from you and potentially become a repeat customer if you can effectively develop that exposure to your brand and build long-lasting relationships.

So, is link building still relevant to SEO?

The short answer to this is yes, absolutely. There was a misconception that Google’s Penguin update back in 2012 would make backlinks and link-building campaigns less effective but that wasn’t the case. Google’s main goal with that update was to make sure that high-quality links were being used and to deter people from using the black hat techniques we mentioned earlier.

Not all links hold equal value and search engines are looking more closely at links now than ever to rank your website and understand your E-A-T (expertise, authority, trust). Creativity and a strong strategy are needed to carry out successful link-building in 2023, but when you can do it right, you will see your results soar.

Where can I find link building services near me?

If you’re looking for high quality and professional link building UK, our team at Deliver can help. As a passionate digital marketing and SEO agency, we have extensive knowledge and experience in optimisation and link building. We will get to know your business and industry and create a strategy that can give you results. Contact us today to learn more or get started with us by requesting a free audit to find out how your current digital marketing efforts are performing.

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