When done successfully, link building can lead to some truly stellar results.
We know that links are extremely important for SEO, especially given all of the buzz in the search community around the November 8, 2019 Google algorithm update and how it may have been strongly related to site links (though Google’s John Mueller warned against jumping to this conclusion).
While link building should unquestionably be a part of your overall SEO (and business) strategy, it takes time, planning, and dedication to drive actual success.
For this reason, I’ll cover six of the most common challenges and roadblocks to link building success and how you can avoid them.
1. The Need for Quality Assets
Don’t underestimate the need for quality assets on your site, particularly when it comes to link building.
Creating link-worthy content will help offer valuable information to your readers, reach and engage key targets, and strengthen your authority in the eyes of Google and users.
Assets include everything from articles to products and services pages, research and data, and even the people who work for your organization.
These all present the opportunity to generate links back to your website organically, or by reaching out about a link.
- Influencer-based content: Create content centered around industry influencers and experts that share exclusive insights, perspectives, and opinions. This also presents the opportunity to reach out to them directly and encourage shares with their new and highly targeted audiences.
- Research and reports: I’ve consistently found research, data and statistics-oriented content outperforming other types. What common questions are your customers/prospects asking? Do the research to get them the answers they are looking for and break it down in an easily digestible way.
- Other strategic resources: Share premium assets that assist your audiences in their daily responsibilities and help combat common challenges. This includes how-to/user guides, tools, eBooks, whitepapers, FAQ material, infographics, and other multimedia collateral.
In today’s exceptionally competitive search landscape, SEO pros can no longer get away with generating links from mediocre content.
Site owners and managers have no shortage of information to leverage and link to, so you must offer something unique and, simply put, better.
2. Lack of On-Site Optimization
Too often people look to develop off-site website initiatives (i.e., link building) before optimizing on-site.
Link building is far more powerful when it’s supported by on-site optimization.
If your own site isn’t in good shape, it’s extremely difficult to get buy-in from other site owners.
No one wants to send users to a bad site experience.
This is why building trust and authority is essential.
Have a solid technical foundation for your website to get the most out of your link building efforts.
Doing regular technical site check-ins can help ensure this.
Here are a few key elements to consider:
- Site architecture and URL structure.
- Desktop and mobile experience.
- Page load time / page speed.
- Redirect paths.
- Broken pages, links, and images.
- Optimized page tagging elements.
- Internal cross-link strategy.
- And more.