- Joseph R. Mason
At Ocean, we continuously analyze the effectiveness of various SEO strategies and weigh their pros and cons. Through our work with some truly top-notch agencies, we have learned much about the digital landscape. Here we’ll tell you what works, what doesn’t work, and what strategies offer the most bang for the buck.
You want to help your clients to boost their page rankings and reach the first page of Google. Below is our take on how to get there quickly by employing link building and content creation without having those efforts backfire. The key is in creating the most natural-looking backlink profile you can.
1 - Be sure to link to pages all throughout your site, not just the most valuable ones
Why? Search engines know that something’s up if all of your links point to just one page. Link to the less important pages for a more well-rounded link profile that won’t backfire on you.
2 - Help your clients develop interesting campaigns and use those to drive links
With a well-crafted infographic or a relevant piece of content, links can start to place themselves. Publications of all kinds from blogs to news outlets can make good use of graphics, infographics, maps, and tools; so they’re easier to place and more likely to be shared. It’s worth the little bit of extra effort!
These content campaigns are particularly effective when hinged on data relating to a seasonal event, holiday, or a newsworthy event relevant to your industry. They’re also a great strategy for placing brands that are less interesting in-and-of themselves.
3 - Don’t post the same number of links each month!
Vary your number of links every month and make sure to avoid patterns - your backlink history should appear semi-random.
4 - Use varied anchor text that makes sense in context
It may seem easiest to keep using the same, strong anchor text, but unfortunately, it will appear extremely unnatural. Use long-tail partial match anchors, vary the url formatting, etc., and be sure to avoid inserting popular search terms into content. Anchor text must be in plain English that matches its surroundings. Basically, you want that anchor text to be as close to “natural” as possible, which brings us to the next point:
5 - Stick to branded anchor text about 40% of the time
This is the most typical type of anchor text, so this is what you’ll want to stick to. High performing SEO agencies are careful to keep to this rule.
6 - Make sure those links are coming from varied sources
Regardless of what’s easiest to scale, links should be found across a wide array of sites from blogs, to news publications, to directories and so on.
7 - Be sure link placement appears earned, not sponsored
This means that posts can’t be about your brand from start to finish. Rather, posts should also link to other brands and must not have any “sponsored” tags anywhere.
8 - Keep content length varied and avoid patterns
Your content placements should vary in length; it’s a red flag when all content is of the same general word count.
9 - Keep the quality of link sources varied
Sure, high quality links are great, but it’s just not natural for all links to be coming from the same type of site whether according to DA, TF, PR or what have you. This also goes both ways - those higher quality links may be harder to get, but it’s equally unnatural for all of your links to come from low quality sites.
10 - Social signals matter, so use them
Successful brands share their content along with other industry-relevant tid-bits and company news in order to generate real buzz and boost rankings.
11 - Keep volume of links realistic
Depending on your client, the natural volume of links will be different. Small, local businesses will have a much smaller amount versus large brands with national reach.
12 - Build links to existing content
Once you’ve established content placement for brands, it can be extremely beneficial to start building links to those content placements. This increases the authority and value of those links and is also a more natural alternative to blasting a super high volume of links all at once towards your client’s site.