SEO is a fluid, ever-changing industry.
One year we’re building millions of links and topping search results without a second thought. The next, Google upgrades their algorithm and we have to work much harder for a single link, having to take into account quality over quantity.For an algorithm innocently called “Penguin”, it shook up the digital marketing world.
The one thing that has remained consistent over the past few years has been the power of link building. Backlinks are still one of Google’s top ranking factors, coming in above website content and RankBrain (Google’s machine learning algorithm which determines the most relevant results for search queries).
…but link building can be a major effort. There’s so much outreach and follow up, often with minimal results.
What if I told you there was a way to consistently get links without ongoing link building efforts?
Why do I need backlinks?
Backlinks are one of Google’s top three ranking factors (which we know because SEO experts Backlinko examined 100,000,000 Google search results and discovered that backlinks impact SEO rankings more than anything else).
These unseen heroes – uh, links, I mean – represent a vote of confidence from other websites like blogs, directories, ecommerce shops, and other businesses.
If Google can see there are a lot of people talking about your business, she’s more likely to place you towards the top of search results because you’re the juicy news! You’re what people want to see!
Need more incentive than that?
According to statistics forum, Statista, businesses and websites in the top spot of search results get 20.5% of traffic. This means out of 100 people, 20 people are likely to click through to your website.
Let’s face it – people just don’t like to scroll. You need to be in the top three spots if you want to be seen.
How does content help attain backlinks?
The best way to prove your worth to customers, clients, and Google alike is posting valuable content. We want to make the online experience more convenient, accessible, and enjoyable for people first, Google second.
As TopRank Online Marketing CEO Lee Odden once stated, “content is the reason search began in the first place.”
A helpful, interesting, informative piece of content can do wonders for your SEO. Fresh content makes your business seem more real to the person on the other end of the screen and provides more opportunities for you to rank for relevant industry keywords.
A bulked-up piece of content is also linkable for other websites. Think of bloggers and writers – where does their info come from? More often than not, writers link to other resources when putting together their own content.
What sort of content attracts backlinks?
Relevant, informative, valuable information always wins out when it comes to backlinks. Bloggers aren’t going to link to your content if it’s boring or bland. Customers aren’t going to spend ten minutes reading your article if it hasn’t got photos or, worse, a point.
Your content will be linkable if it provides value to your target audience.
Here are some examples of content natural backlinks will be breathtakingly attracted to.
Buzzfeed has created an international empire out of listicles i.e. articles that are, in essence, a list of interesting, shocking, relatable or humorous facts. Each point in the article is accompanied by images, videos or GIFs for sensory interest.
There’s no denying that these articles aren’t effective in garnering attention. Most Buzzfeed articles get thousands of likes and shares on Facebook because people relate to the content, or they find it interesting enough to share with the world.
Listicles are a fun, simple method of drawing attention.
Plus, articles with lots of engaging, high-quality images are more likely to gather readers and sharers. Most people are visual learners and skim through content rather than spending four or five minutes reading it. In fact, 65% of people are visual learners and 94% of articles with images get more engagement!
Ultimate guides and ebooks
Guides and ebooks are perfect for sharing valuable information about a topic related to your business – or hundreds of topics! Guides and ebooks are flexible when it comes to content, so you’ve got plenty of room to link to other websites, provide tonnes of relevant information, and grab the attention of your desired audience.
Here at Gorilla, one of our favourite methods of building backlinks over time is a content asset. This could be a “top 100” article or even an ultimate guide to the industry you’re in, like cleaning, designing, drawing, and more.
The point is to create a super valuable, super interesting piece of content people are going to want to refer back to or even share on their own blogs.
For example, check out this mega-article from Golf World designed to help Lowering Your Handicap. There are 100 videos, articles, and infographs to engage with and learn from.
The great thing about this guide is it’s targeted to their specific audience i.e. golfers. There are thousands of golf enthusiasts and bloggers across the internet… this article is sure to attract a few organic backlinks over time!
Ebooks are similar to these guides but also have the added incentive of downloading a hard copy for later reading.
Put lots of research, thought, and planning into your guide or ebook. This content can become a go-to resource for your readers and can be a powerful lead generation tool.
Using content for backlinks: the end game
No matter how you look at it, content assets do more good than bad when it comes to building backlinks. Sure, there’s a chance your content asset will flop, but the ongoing backlink generation without having to spend hours doing outreach is worth it.
Want to talk to an expert about how to build a fabulous piece of website content? Get in touch with the Gorilla 360 team and ask us how we can help generate backlinks for you using content.