Link building is one of the oldest and most important steps of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Over the years, a lot has changed in terms of how marketers and search analysts go about SEO, and specifically link building. However, it has always been part of the process, and likely always will.
In times when things are a bit different and COVID-19 has the world on edge, it might seem like a waste of time to be focusing on something like your SEO strategy. That simply is not the case. It’s important to keep moving forward and making sure that when things settle down, you are still able to keep your company going. That’s why it’s important to keep up with your SEO and your link building strategies. Need some more inspiration? Take a look:
1. One of the few strategies that has changed, yet stayed the same
The reason for link building has remained constant despite the vast array of updates to Google’s search algorithm, and the changes the various other search engines have made over the years. Links from another website to your website are still a positive vote to your online presence, telling the search engines that this site is worth ranking.
What has changed is the method of building links. You used to be able to place hundreds of links on websites called link farms and use the quantity over quality method to fool the likes of Google. These days, it really is about getting quality links back to your website, which takes time and effort – and is why you shouldn’t put that on pause while in lockdown.
2. There are more people browsing the internet right now
The lockdown period means that many people are unable to work at the moment, or are working in a very different environment remotely from home. This has led to a large number of people browsing the internet for ways to connect, something to distract them or simply to get their work done. Now is a good time for a business to be available and easy to find online, and to provide content that people would like to share and link to.
3. There’s time to build relationships with influencers
With people stuck at home self-isolating, there isn’t much for influencers to post about. They can’t be out and about, doing what they normally do. You may find that there are some who are looking for new partnerships and content to post about at this time. This provides the perfect opportunity to forge mutually beneficial deals. Having some new, good influencers on your side can go a long way to boosting your social media presence and, indirectly, your links.
4. Keep your brand at the top of the page
When people go back to work and have spending money again, it’ll be a good time to be at the top of page one of search results. By putting in the work now and continuing your link building strategy through this rough period, you’ll go a long way to ensuring that you don’t lose your place in the rankings. Better yet, you could find that you get a leg up over your competition by pushing forward now.
Blue Array’s chart clearly outlines how those who continue to focus on SEO will have a competitive advantage over those who pause their campaigns. By retaining the status quo, or even increasing SEO focus you may well overtake brands that let their strategies lapse. You can think of it as future-proofing, as your continued efforts could boost rankings, putting you in an improved position that outpaces the market when the crisis passes.
5. You may have the time for the trickier techniques
Strategies such as link reclamation and broken link hunts take a lot of time and effort. Many people put those on the back-burner, hoping that one day they’ll have time to look at it. If you’re one of the businesses in forced downtime right now, you have the time to get to these kinds of strategies. This could be the boost for your business that you’ve been looking for.
6. Now is the time to relate your brand to the common human story
Another of the key areas of link building is to create content on your website that is worth sharing. People want to know about the people behind your company, not just about the product or service you’re selling. Good, relatable content has always done well in terms of helping you build links.
Right now, people are reaching out through the internet to link up to others. If your content tells a relatable story and shows a true human face, you could see a significant boost in the value of your backlinks and rankings. Be honest and real though, because people need true connections while they’re in lockdown.
During this trying time other companies may shy away from talking about COVID-19 related topics. However, this can be an excellent opportunity to highlight your ethics and entrepreneurial spirit. While your audience may not currently be in a position to make any financial commitments, if you engage with them and offer something of value, they will remember this at a later date .
7. Social media is buzzing
Social media can be part of a link building strategy as search engines seem to use shares on platforms like Twitter and Facebook as part of the positive voting for your website. People are searching for interesting content to read on social media to distract them from the global crisis. If you can write good content that is relevant to your business and the world, you can probably get it shared far and wide on a social platform right now.
8. Link building should be part of your overall marketing strategy
You wouldn’t drop your company newsletter or your regular Google Ads, would you? So why drop such an essential part of your SEO strategy? All of the various elements that go into digital marketing and SEO play together to create a strong overall brand image. Without one, you are making the other areas work harder for no good reason, and probably going to feel lag because of it.
9. Link building simply is not dead
The rumors of its death have been greatly exaggerated. There was a time not that long ago when it seemed like link building may be on the out, but it was merely the way people went about it that needed to change. This led to a number of experts saying that the practice was dead, and we should move on. If you were smart though, you moved on to being smarter about the way you built links back to your website rather than moving on to a different tactic. Link farms are dead, that’s for sure. However, the boost you get from a respected website linking back to yours outweighs so many other areas of an SEO strategy.
As you can see, just because the world has gone into lockdown, your link building strategies don’t need to do the same.