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Link Building in SEO
A Beginner's Guide

Link Building in SEO: A Beginner's Guide
Category:  SEO
Author:  Jesse Izeboud

Link Building in SEO: A Beginner's Guide

Link building is the method of procuring hyperlinks from other websites to yours. It's a cornerstone of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) aimed at enhancing a webpage's position in search results through high-quality incoming links.

Why is Link Building Crucial?

  • Backlinks play a pivotal role in determining a page's ranking. They're among the top factors Google takes into account.

  • Major search engines perceive backlinks as endorsements or "votes of confidence" for the recipient website.

  • Each backlink acts as a testimony that your content is reliable, valuable, and beneficial.

  • To secure a prominent spot in Google's search results, backlink building is indispensable.

Link Building Techniques

Link building strategies predominantly fit into one of these three categories:

1. Solicit Links

This involves proactively reaching out to websites and requesting them to link to your content, such as:

  • Blog articles
  • Comprehensive guides
  • Ebooks
  • Visual materials (e.g., infographics)
  • Case analyses
  • Original data and findings

Tools like Semrush's Link Building Tool can expedite the process of identifying potential link prospects.

2. Incorporate Links

This refers to the manual insertion of your links on other platforms. Examples include:

  • Social media profiles
  • Business directories
  • Forums, online communities, and Q&A portals (e.g., Quora)
  • Comment sections of blogs
  • User account pages

However, a word of caution: Manually added SEO links might not be the most effective. These tend to originate from sources of lesser quality, which Google might not highly value. Since these are non-editorial (self-created), they might not carry significant weight in the eyes of search engines.

3. Acquire Links Organically

Earning links implies that other websites reference yours without any solicitation on your part. The most effective approach to achieve this is by producing top-tier content that others deem link-worthy.

Content that typically garners backlinks includes:

  • Visual materials (e.g., infographics, graphs, illustrations)
  • Exclusive findings and data (e.g., sector analyses, polls, unique research)
  • Online utilities and calculators
  • Detailed manuals and tutorials

To unearth more content inspirations, scrutinize the backlink profiles of your competitors.

Best Backlink Building Strategies

There are many strategies for building links. But here are some of the most effective ones.


Outreach for link building is when you reach out to others and ask for a backlink.

  • Importance: People can’t link to your content without discovering it. Even the best assets need promotion to attract links.
  • Tools: Use tools like Semrush’s Link Building Tool for prospecting.

Become a Source

A great way to build high-quality links is to become a source for reporters, journalists, and bloggers.

  • Tools: One popular service is Help a Reporter Out (HARO).
  • Process:
    1. Sign up at HARO and register as a source.
    2. Choose the type of emails you want to receive.
    3. Watch for requests and contribute if you can.
    4. Send valuable pitches to writers.

Note: Other services like HARO include Qwoted, SourceBottle, and Help a B2B Writer.

Broken Link Building

Broken link building involves finding broken external links on niche websites and suggesting your content as an alternative.

  • Why It Works: No one wants broken links on their site, and you provide a beneficial alternative.
  • Strategy: Start by finding broken pages on competitor websites.

Create Linkable Assets

A linkable asset is content that naturally earns backlinks.

  • Examples: Infographics, original research, in-depth guides.
  • Strategy: Understand what your niche links to by examining competitor backlink profiles.

Find Unlinked Brand Mentions

Identify instances where your brand is mentioned but not linked.

  • Tools: Use tools like Prowly’s News Alerts to find unlinked mentions.

Examine Competitor Backlinks

Adopt and replicate your competitors' link-building strategies.

  • Steps:
    1. Use Semrush’s Backlink Analytics tool.
    2. Enter a competitor’s domain and view the “Indexed Pages” tab.

Reclaim Lost Backlinks

You can lose backlinks for various reasons. Your goal is to reclaim them.

  • Strategy: Tackle lost backlinks first. Understand why you lost the link and then reach out.

Tip: Always seek feedback to prevent further loss of links in the future.