Four Pillars of SEO: Backlinks

By Josh Hiemstra

December 5, 2022

In our previous blog post about SEO’s four main pillars, we discussed the importance of backlinks for SEO.  Having other websites link to your website demonstrates to search engines that your website is trustworthy.  Getting other websites to link to your website can be challenging, but we put together a list of different SEO backlink strategies to help your ongoing SEO work.

SEO Backlink Strategy #1: Create Content That Websites Will Link To

In this strategy, the goal is to create content that other websites will want to link to.  

Remember that you are experts in your field, so a good place to start is brainstorming what other people in your field find valuable.  To generate ideas for creating quality web content, you may also want to:

  • Talk to other thought leaders in your field
  • Conduct keyword research to determine what is being searched for
  • Review Google Search for autocomplete keywords as well as related search especially questions

After generating your list of ideas, it’s time to create your content pieces. A few types of content are particularly linkable including:

  • How to’s
  • Guides
  • Survey Data
  • Case studies
  • Detailed infographics

With high quality content, links may happen naturally or you may need to conduct outreach to companies that would potentially be interested in linking to your content.  With reaching out to different websites, best practice is to create a list of potential prospects and strategy of outreach.  Building relationships with potential prospects may also be necessary to gain trust to have their website link back to your website.

SEO Backlink Strategy #2: Competitor Backlink Prospecting

With tools available to find data on what backlinks your competitors have, this can be a treasure chest of potential websites you can also use to generate a backlink.

After identifying your competitors’ backlinks, you can use this list to review websites and determine from your field expertise the difficulty to get a backlink for your website.  Some potential backlinks could be from authoritative websites in your field or relevant directories.

SEO Backlink Strategy #3: Unlinked Brand Mentions

With your brand, there may already be websites that mention your brand but do not have a link to your website.  This strategy involves doing research across the web to find websites that mention your company but do not have a backlink.  This will again involve creating a prospective list of websites and outreaching to website owners to update their website with a backlink to your website.

SEO Backlink Strategy #4: Broken Link Campaigns

For this strategy, conduct research across the web to determine if there are opportunities where websites are linking to a competitor website via a broken link.  This is beneficial to flag this issue to the website owner and give them the opportunity to change the backlink to your content.

SEO Backlink Strategy #5: Guest Blogging

You may already have relationships with other companies in your industry.  This can be a great opportunity to create content for the other company that includes a backlink to your website.  This again requires outreach to potential companies and writing quality content pieces that they would want to put onto their website.

Our recommendation when creating a SEO backlink strategy is to start with low hanging fruit.  Determine which of the different strategies can produce quick wins to get more backlinks.  Next steps are generating lists of potential websites with a strategy on how to get a backlink from that website.

If you want more information about Simpler Site’s SEO services or are looking for help increasing your website’s backlinks, contact Simpler Site at (616)822-3706 and we will be happy to discuss more.


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About Josh Hiemstra

Josh Hiemstra manages SEO and website maintenance, helping clients improve digital presence and drive strategic results. Josh’s background in medical and automotive engineering has honed his ability to thoughtfully analyze complex data and information. Clients appreciate Josh’s commitment to getting the details right. From complex audits to standard maintenance, they trust his results. Josh earned his Bachelor of Science in Engineering from University of Michigan. At the University of Michigan Josh studied user experience and user interfaces. Josh has a Fundamentals of Digital Marketing certificate, an Advanced Google Analytics certificate, and Google Tag Manager certificate and is also certified as a Six Sigma Black Belt.

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