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4 link building mistakes you could too easily be making

Link building is a thoroughly tried-and-tested way to get a website climbing up SERPs (search engine results pages). However, because link building is now such a familiar SEO strategy, you could too easily overestimate how much you know about getting it right.

You probably already know, for example, not to pay for other websites to link to your own lest Google hits it with an SEO penalty. There are, though, many other link-building don’ts — like those detailed below — you could be guilty of following without even consciously realising.

Trying to only get backlinks from popular websites

Key to building your website’s SEO profile is obtaining the right backlinks (so-called as they link from someone else’s website back to your own). So, what exactly are the ‘right’ backlinks?

Generally, those from websites high in domain authority. If a website already thriving in the SEO stakes links to your own website, Google will see this as a sign that the latter deserves an SEO boost. Nonetheless, the sites you do target should also be relevant to your niche.

Not personalising emails sent to website owners  

Once you have decided what websites you would like to get backlinks from, you could be tempted to email each website owner with a message explaining that you like a particular piece of their web content and wondered if they would be willing to insert a link to a similar piece of your own.

However, as webmasters are already inundated with emails like this, you must make sure that each one you do write is personalised to the recipient rather than in line with an outdated template.

Seeking backlinks for content that doesn’t really deserve them

Before you even start emailing those website owners, ask yourself whether the web content you want them to link to genuinely warrants their attention.

Remember that these people won’t want to link to something unless they reckon it would be of meaningful value to their own website visitors. A relatively slight piece, e.g. a 300-word blog post, probably isn’t going to cut it. You will have a better chance of success with a lengthy guide or ‘how to’ tutorial.

What if you aren’t adept at writing? We have SEO copywriters who would be happy to pen engrossing articles for your website. Besides, the content doesn’t have to consist entirely of text; consider asking our graphic designers to create visually compelling infographics for you.

Being insufficiently selective with internal linking

Something else you should do before hunting for backlinks is stack up on internal links, i.e. those that link between pages of your own website. Still, heed that these links have to implemented in a way that puts the user experience first.

For example, if you run an online store selling a wide range of electrical devices, it would make more sense for a ‘iPhones’ category page to link to a page for iPhone screen protectors rather than, say, a page dedicated to CD players your customers wouldn’t even be able to control with their iPhones.

4 link building mistakes you could too easily be making

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