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Exploring Link-Building Opportunities

Posted by jtolman to Marketing Tips on April 4th, 2013

There were hundreds of updates this past year, with the Google algorithm constantly changing, which made it even more difficult to track keywords.  Due to so many updates (some that were under our radar and some that weren’t), it made it difficult for SEOs to track their links.  The updates are projected to keep evolving and changing for this coming year.  We cannot just rely on one single link building method.  So, what is your Ecommerce site supposed to do?  You need to diversify and build your brand while also making sure that you are building something that will stand the test of time.  Ecommerce sites were hit by updates left and right last year.  Even large brands realized that they needed to pay closer attention to tracking their keywords and links.  It is difficult to constantly keep up with the updates when different platforms are putting value on different things.  For example, SEO’s main focus is on building more links, and social networks are mainly focused on more mentions.  SEOs need to be in-touch with social platforms at the same time that the executives of a company need to communicate the business objectives.  Basically, with all the algorithm changes that Google has made, it affects search results in dramatic ways, and it is hard to keep up.

Don’t you fret! We have got great, simple steps from the experts at Outspoken Media that anyone and everyone can apply in order to get links that drive results without risk!  These following steps will help you elevate your link building approach by going back to the basics, starting with your pen and paper.

Take the path of “No More Excuses!”  There are so many ways to get back-links, even if you know nothing about link building at all.  Smart link builders account for time, resources, and expected value, but most importantly, smart link builders ensure their business objectives are in-line with everything they do.

Use the following steps to find and create link building opportunities for your Ecommerce site:

Step 1.  What’s the problem?

What problem is your business trying to solve?  What is the higher purpose of your company, other than simply making money? Look closely at your company’s mission statement or purpose, and search for the key problems you are trying to solve.

Step 2.  Does my content address the problem?

Does your website have relevant content that addresses each of those problems?  If so, how in depth is your content regarding each of those problems? Find areas where you can expand. What will people want to know about your solutions? Consider yourself in the scenario of every possible type of persona that will encounter your webpage.  Do you answer each of their questions?  These are opportunities for great content and potential links.

Step 3.  Who’s searching for my website?

How does Google even know what your site is about if you do not have enough content to back it up? It doesn’t.  So, focus on who you are trying to reach with your website and then on the content needed for those people.  Who is trying to reach your website?  Expand your answer beyond the scope of just your customers.  Some examples to get you going are: employees, partners, community, or industry.  Build the needs of more than just your customer.

Step 4.  Does my content attract those groups of people?

Does your website have content to attract those groups of people? Let’s look at one of the potential groups of people: your industry. How does your website attract your industry?  For example, you could provide a section on your website about your involvement in the industry news.  Take the potential group: community.  Could someone know that you buy locally or support specific brands just based on the content in your website?  Is there sufficient content for this group?  Add content to attract specific groups of people to increase the possibility of gaining back-links.  DirectFix.com is a great example of a website that provides great content without the direct intention of selling their product. However, they have proven to sell in the long-term because they are at the forefront of their customers’ minds, a name they know and trust.

Step 5.  Who would share my content?

Brainstorm audience segments that will link to and share your content.  Justin Briggs, SEO Consultant at Outspoken Media, recommends the following steps to brainstorm these audience segments:

     
  1. Determine who you’re trying to persuade
  2.  
  3. Segment this audience into different personas
  4.  
  5. Define their attributes and psychographic
  6.  
  7. Define their savviness (Do they know what SEO is? Do they know the value of a link?)

Now, it’s time to get out your pen and paper and start to diagram these groups that you have created.  Create a brainstorming web to delve into each segment.  Every one of these groups has a possibility for content with links.  Let’s take the group, “Community.”  Here are three potential segments of this group of people: Local Businesses, Colleagues, and Local Groups.

Step 6.  What Business Strategies Can I Develop?

Now that you have these segments created, take every single one and develop business strategies for each.  Ask yourself, “How do I get back-links from these Local Groups?” Delve further into their attributes and try to make potential connections with your website. Whenever you do outreach, make sure that they are from a relevant industry, that they are socially engaged, and that they have value.  Do your homework and let the ideas roll out of your head and onto that piece of paper. The key is to always go back to your business purpose, the problem you’re trying to solve, and your audience.


Outspoken Media explores link-building opportunities for Ecommerce clients every day.  This information was based on the webinar, “Link Smarter, Not Harder: Squeaky Clean Link Building That Works,” conducted by Rhea Drysdale via SEOmoz Mozinars.

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