We’ve all heard how important backlinks are in the neverending (and always evolving) game of search engine optimization. They build credibility, increase your reputation, and Google determines how trustworthy a site is by the number of links back to them, so, yes, you really do need them. The more links, the higher the credibility, and the higher your site ranks in organic search.
But it’s not all that simple. You can’t just have hundreds or thousands of links back to your site. For a successful B2B marketing strategy, you need quality backlinks, because Google calculates a link quality score which counts the number of high-quality links going back to you. Too many links from one domain, or too many links from questionable sites, and your score goes down.
So how do you get high-quality backlinks for your B2B site? Read on for some tips:
1. Guest Posts and Op-Eds in Industry Publications. Guest blogging and op-eds are the tried-and-true way to gain high-quality backlinks. It’s also the most intensive. In fact, this is easily a full-time job for an in-person marketer since this process requires so much effort to search for relevant and trustworthy sites that publish guest blog posts, find contact emails, reach out with pitches, and write engaging and thought-provoking content full of valuable information that builds thought leadership and credibility for your brand.
All of that takes time, but in the end, everyone’s happy. The site that publishes your post will have a new article to drive traffic to their website, and your brand will get visibility from a new audience, as well as a vital backlink from a reputable source.
2. Non-Written Guest Content. Besides a written article, you can submit other content types as guest spots. For instance, you can repurpose an existing blog post you wrote into an infographic and ask similar sites to host it, complete with some customary intro text.
White papers, case studies, and other content types work as well. Podcasts, radio shows, and TV appearances can also provide useful backlink opportunities if you make sure to ask for a link or provide intro text about your company or your interview or discussion.
3. Reach Out to Sites that Mention Your Brand or Company. Set up Google Alerts to find out when and where your brand or company is mentioned. Maybe you’re namedropped in an article or an industry blog. If that source mentions your brand but doesn’t provide a link, shoot over an email and ask for a helping hand. Often, they’ll plug in a link for you, and bam, you’ve got a new backlink – and all you had to do was ask.
4. Reach Out and Ask to be Part of Roundup Posts. Some niches may have authoritative sites that periodically publish roundup articles, the type of mid-year or end-of-the-year content with headlines like “Best SEO Search Website” or “The Top of Public Relations Agencies of 2018.” If you see any similar roundup pieces in your industry, go ahead to email the site admin or writer and ask for an inclusion and a backlink.
Oftentimes, large publications like Forbes and CIO, will look for industry sources that they can quote frequently in roundup articles that offer bits of advice for industry insiders. Find the reporters for these types of posts and reach out with an introduction to your and your company, and the types of input and insight you can offer to their industry coverage. This is a great way to have a consistent flow of backlinks coming in from press mentions, and also a great way to build strong media relationships that can last for years to come.
5. Become a Forum Authority. One of the more creative ways to build backlinks (although maybe a little chaotic, since you cannot control the outcome) is to become an authority of online forums that focus on your industry. Sites like Reddit, Yahoo, and Quora often have people asking industry-related questions, and that’s where you come in. Build up credibility as someone with a lot of useful, in-depth answers, then eventually include a link back to your site with a longer, more thorough explanation. This is tricky since you’re at the whim of other forum users and moderators who can bring down the banhammer, but if your brand attracts a chill community, it can be well worth it.
6. Submit Your Brand to Award Sites, Conferences, Directories, and Review Sites. You should be submitting your work for awards anyway, but in case you’re not, look for industry awards and submit company work that fits within their criteria. A backlink on an industry award site will do wonders for your SEO since it’s a hub where you and your competitors all get mentioned, and it can even help with lead gen and reputation boosts. The same goes for conferences, directories, and review sites—all places where customers go for industry-related news, research, and word-of-mouth.
A single backlink on the right, reputable site can generate thousands of clicks over the long-term, which will improve your analytics, boost your cred and your rep, and help increase your lead gen efforts. What we offer here are just a few ways to up your backlink game. For more information, contact S&G and we’ll help your B2B company get more quality backlinks.