SEO – Link Building Series: Backlink Building Methods

A couple of posts ago, we saw how internal linking and optimization can be done within your blog or website in order to improve reach and thereby help Search Engine (SE) bots to crawl and link relevant pages. Now, it’s time to learn about various link building techniques in order to obtain a lot of backlinks to your blog (This topic could be boring to those who have read it 100 times elsewhere). As we understood sometime back, no ‘nofollow’ backlinks with relevant keywords in the anchor text will boost the search engine rankings of your pages.

Ways to build your Backlinks

#1 Blogroll & Link exchanges: This is the most common way of building links whereby on mutual consent the links are exchanged using the blog roll space. This is also less spammy in nature and sometimes will do the role of advertising for your blog.

backlinks and link building methods

#2 Link love: This is not exactly my way of link building but there are a lot of people who give and take love with no nofollow references to each others’ posts. If you link to and from relevant posts, it is actually beneficial to both the parties. There are people who regularly publish link love posts.

#3 Directory submission: You can submit your blog URL to directory services some of which provide dofollow listing. In most cases, relevant front page listings come at a cost.

#4 Blog commenting: Blog commenting on dofollow blogs is a great way to improve your inbound links. In addition, if the blog supports a top commentator, commentluv, keywordluv plugins, it can improve your chances of getting dofollow links from more relevant sources.

#5 Forum posting: Many forums these days provide dofollow links via post signatures of signed up users. Though the link strength of forum backlinks are relatively weak, a number of them will always be of help. Please read my article titled High PR forums to help popularize your blog for more information on this method of building backlinks.

#6 Guest posting: Guest posting on popular blogs will not only build one or two relevant links to your blog but also attract some traffic, get some subscriptions and conversions.

#7 Via services such as blog themes, widgets and badges: If you build and market your own free themes and widgets, you will have a chance to put backlinks on those free products (e.g. Free WordPress themes, blog rank widgets etc)

#8 Link baiting: Link baiting refers to the process of publishing some content/post so exciting, unique and compelling that people willingly would link to such content. The baits could be something like plugins, free online services, free tool downloads etc.

#9 Paid links: Paid links or buying links are another way to improve your backlinks but these come at the risk of being detected and blacklisted by search engines such as Google. Google believes that such unethical ways of link building inorder to boost page ranks are methods to sabotage their logic of identifying the relevant links.

#10 Article submission and spinning: Another way of building links is article marketing and/or spinning. This method is explained in detail in one of my posts on article submission sites

Other tips for effective link building

  • Whenever you bump into a blog in your niche with similar ranks and statistics, make it a point to contact its author via contact forms for potential link exchange queries and/or blogroll entries
  • Three-way linking (a => b, b=> c, c => a) is supposed to be better than reciprocal linking (a => b, b => a)
  • Keep track of the URLs or blogs with which you have exchanged links (especially in three way linking). You may loose track otherwise
  • Make sure that your link partners use dofollow links if they promised to do so
  • It is always beneficial to exchange links with pages that have a low number of outbound links. This minimizes page rank dilution
  • Use the NoDoFollow Firefox add-on to check the rel properties of links
  • You can use free tools like comment kahuna commenting software to search and comment on blogs of your niche and/or have specific keywords in them
  • Read the comment policy of blogs where you are commenting to save you from the risk of getting marked as spam. Also gently ask the bloggers whether keywords in URL are okay (some of them don’t allow this)
  • Gradual and slow link building is always better than high speed link-building (such as article spinning or purchasing links in bulk)
  • Stay away from bad neighbourhood (rated sites, copyright violations, pirated content etc) while exchanging links as blanket bans by Google can put your online life int jeopardy

I hope that I have covered almost all known methods of link building in this post. One of our online buddies has recently started a bigger post on the same topic. You might want to check out his comprehensive guide on building backlinks as well.

Part VIII: Keyword Optimization for Long Term benefits >>

Comments

  1. Point 1, 4 and 5 are my favourite. The rest I have not really tried. Nice list. Point 7 seem very good too. Maybe I shall try something like this later on..maybe designing a simple nice template. :-)

    Kurt Avish’s last blog post… The Mauritian Summer Time Become A Total Flop!

  2. Finding dofollow blogs to comment is very very difficult. I don’t think we can find the blogs who give dofollow to commentors.

    Very Very nice artilce Ajith..These days you’re rocking with SEO articles. Becoming SEO Guru i guess? :)

  3. Out of these, Guest posting is my favorite, I used to guest post a lot some time back. Guest posts bring you quality backlinks and some free promotion, so more than a dofollow backlink, you will end up with some cool readers and friends. (I said friends because, I have made some myself!)

    And I dont suport Point #1. Thats totally useless, Google really hates that I guess. Ajith, that shouldnt be the first point there, I suggest Blog Commenting as the first one. Thats the easiest of all!

    Cheers

  4. Raju :

    yet another master-piece Ajith! looks like a “link baiter” post 😉
    I have tried some of the ways mentioned, but want to give GUEST POSTing a try sometime.

  5. Ajith, yet another rocking post….thanks a lot for the link love

    Binaryday’s last blog post… Comprehensive guide on ‘building backlinks for Bloggers’

  6. Excellent post.I do a lot of blog commenting and one thing I often do is deep-link to a relevant post on my own blog.This is a good strategy because the search engines can crawl much deeper and perhaps I get some PR for older posts as well.

    Tom – Home Business Tips’s last blog post… Website Profits Now!

  7. You have covered all the main routes to link building, I have been using several methods you have mentioned above, thinks working fine, only problem I am facing is hard to track down which is the most effective, If I knew I would spend more time/energy on it.

    Chinese Girl’s last blog post… JinJing Inn (Shenyang Beilin)

  8. @Kurt, releasing free themes and widgets is the new trend..because in no time your relevant backlink count will shoot up.

    @Lax, there are plenty dofollow blogs. But again, a lot of commenters will be always pouncing on them :) Use dofollo.com or even commentkahuna to find them. And no man, SEO is relatively new to me and am trying to learn.

    @Arun, guest posting can definitely bring in quality visits (along with backlinks) and conversions. You are right, as bloggers probably we should place commenting aspect first in the list. However, point #1 is not completely useless.

    @Raju, this is not exactly a bait post :)

    @BinaryDay, You are welcome man…and try to complete the post soon.

    @Tom, you are absolutely right. I had covered the benefits of internal linking in the previous post of this series.

    @Chinese Girl, technically speaking, at the end all methods are useful as long as they fetch in backlinks.

    Thanks folks for your views…

  9. Manshu :

    This is a good list. I think the guest post one works the best. Nor surprisingly, it is the hardest one to do in this list too.

  10. Archie Pennies :

    You can also build a sneaky site farm but it has to be sneaky enough that G doesn’t notice.

  11. Mitch :

    Hey Ajith. My favorite way to get backlinks is commenting on other blogs. My least favorite, and the one I think is a major league waste of time in today’s world, is directory submission. The thing is that I don’t really know anyone who goes to a directory anymore to find anyway. That’s why we have search engines. Therefore, directories, at least in my way of thinking, are disjointed and won’t really get you targeted traffic, even if you happen to be lucky enough to find a category that fits what you do.

    Then again, I could easily be wrong; nah! lol

  12. @Manshu, Guest posts really works but it’s not really that tough.

    @Luis, that sounds like another option though I am not quite sure how to achieve it. Could you explain how?

    @Mitch, blog commenting definitely is more organic and cleaner way of building links slowly and steadily. As for the directory submission, there are very high PR paid (featured) submissions that fethes you high PR backlinks. Then there are elite directories such as Yahoo directory, DMOZ, Zoom info etc a listing in which improves your search engine ranks big time.

  13. I guess I spend most of my time commenting. I think Forums are a great method but you have to invest so time in it. I have invested some time in the WordPress forums and that is starting to have a little bit of return.

    I think you are right about directories too – bloggers and those who are more web savvy tend not to use them but I think a lot of people do.

    Kim Woodbridge’s last blog post… How to Embed Flickr Photos in Your WordPress Posts

  14. Hi,

    That’s a huge information you’ve got there. That’s really cool man! I really like information with great value it’s really worth sharing to others. My favorite is blog commenting because i do get learn from other people and i do get to share my views about it. Excellent work my friend!

    Jennifer Eden Cruz

  15. @Kim, I have bumped into your replies in the WP forums many times. Definitely, even nofollow references from such sites will be of very good use in terms of credibility of your brand…

    @jennifer, thanks for your visit/comment. Blog commenting definitely makes good reading as well as learning. And moreover we get to know more people as well, just like now we met here…

  16. In your opinion, would a keyword rich, highly searched keyword domain give you a leg up in SEO with the above linkbuilding, or is it futile due to competition?

    • Usually for niche blogs, a keyword rich ‘domain name’ is the first choice because it’s mainly meant for search users. If you don’t have that, you will have to do some amount of keywords in the backlinks anchor text, in content (h tags), page title etc. But, overstuffing will not yield anything as Google might punish you by lowering the rank of the particular page. You can take on the competition with the right strategy :) and hence it’s not futile…

  17. Gigs :

    Thank you. Ajith
    Today i found this site because i want to know about SEO and some technic then i search from google.com
    This site have everything that i want to knows

    thank you very much
    ( sorry about my english. )

  18. Great tips for beginners thanks

  19. You can also build a sneaky site farm but it has to be sneaky enough that G doesn’t notice.

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