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The Beginner's Guide to Link Building for SEO

November 2, 2022
8 min read

When it comes to SEO, link building ranks as one of the most important factors when it comes to ranking on Google and other search engines. There are many reasons why this form of backlinking is so popular with search engine optimization experts: not only can you generate backlinks to your site with little to no effort, but they also help give your site authority and trustworthiness in the eyes of both people and search engines alike, something that can take many months or even years to build up otherwise.

If you’re interested in growing your search engine ranking, link building should be one of the first things on your mind. A strong backlink profile can influence the search algorithms like no other factor, which means it’s the perfect place to start your optimization strategy. However, it can be hard to know where to begin and what factors are most important if you're just getting started. This guide will help you get off to a great start by providing actionable information that you can start using right away.

What is Link Building?

Link building is the process of acquiring backlinks to a website. Backlinks are hypertext links on other websites that point back toward your site, giving you a more robust ranking in search engines. The stronger your rank, the more likely people will see your site when they're looking for something similar.

A link can be anything from an image with a link embedded (also called in-line linking) or a full URL link placed at the end of an online post or comment. The most common way of acquiring new links is through content marketing, which uses articles and blog posts as bait to attract readers who will then share them with their networks. You can also contact bloggers who have written about your related topics, offering them a free review copy of your book in exchange for including a link to your site.

When you create good content and get others to help promote it by linking back, the flow goes both ways: not only do visitors get good information from you, and they become potential customers themselves. As more visitors come, so does increased traffic--and increased traffic means increased sales!

Types of Links 

There are two types of links you should consider getting to improve your search engine rankings: 

  • Natural links - Links from another site link back to your site. The natural links come from Wikipedia or blogs discussing your product. You want as many of these as possible because they're more valuable than artificial ones. 
  • Unnatural links- You create links by paying a link-building company. Businesses can make artificial ones through paid advertisements on social media or pay-per-click ads on Google.

When it comes time to start building links, plan what link-building strategy is best for you and how you'll execute it. It's essential to set up metrics before you begin so you know whether your efforts are succeeding. Many companies use click-through rates (CTR) and conversions (CVR) as metrics, though not all do. 

If you decide to use CTRs, your goal is getting people who see the advertisement or landing page to click it - but this doesn't always happen. If you decide to use CVRs instead of CTRs, your goal will be different - try to convert them into a sale at any point down their buyer's journey when they're still interested in buying.

What type of links should I focus on?: Though there are some exceptions (such as Wikipedia), most sites prefer natural links over artificial ones.

Why do we need to build backlinks?

Links are the currency of the internet. They help Google rank websites, determine relevancy and drive traffic from one site to another. Links are also powerful because they can be passed around on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. The more links you have pointing back to your website, the better off you'll be. Here's a breakdown of how link building affects search engine optimization:

  1. Keywords 

Every link to your site is an opportunity for a keyword relevant to what you do or sell to show up on search engine results pages. For example, if someone has linked their blog post about low-cost travel options with free airfare tickets (keyword free) to yours (keyword airfare), they will see your page first when they search that keyword in Google or Bing. This is because it was mentioned in a link.

  1. Authority 

As mentioned before, sites with high authority rankings get priority when it comes time for web crawlers like Googlebot or Bingbot to review them. Many factors go into determining authority, but the most important ones are the number of links coming into and out of a site. When potential visitors type in keywords related to your business and click on your listing, there should be plenty of other places linking back to you and giving you added credibility. A strong reputation through good quality link building increases your chance of ranking higher than competitors who don't take as much care when getting quality links pointing at their site.

  1. Traffic 

While not all companies care about generating traffic through organic search engine listings alone, there's no denying that having more incoming links means more opportunities for additional visitors to visit your site every day. In addition, you'll likely notice more referrals from websites outside of your industry. 

For example, let's say you're a software development company in Redmond, Washington looking to diversify your services by providing hosting solutions. If someone has linked their blog post about the top 5 reasons why consumers choose dedicated servers over shared hosting environments with how to select hosting providers (your keyword), then anytime someone types in dedicated servers or selects a hosting provider, you will come up on the search engine result pages since the topic is relevant to what you offer.

  1. Conversion Rate 

Links provide benefits beyond simply increasing traffic flow-they increase conversion rates too! Studies have shown that 70% of internet users rely on search engines when looking for a local service or product, and 94% consider the relevance of search engine results when making purchase decisions. Having your site listed among competing listings with different amounts of link popularity can make the difference between landing page position one, two, three, or four. 

How can you build backlinks to improve your SEO game?

Follow these steps, If you hired a link builder for your business:

  1. Decide on your anchor text. The anchor text is what you want the link to say or contain. For example, if the link says best restaurants in town, it should be relevant and point back to a page containing content about the best restaurants in town. 

  1. Make a list of sites you want links from with contact information (i.e., email address, phone number). 
  2. Send an email with a brief introduction about your site and request an editorial mention or link back via social media (if applicable). 
  3. Follow up by phone if there is no response after two weeks (max.) 
  4. Once you have a relationship established with someone who can provide you with links, consider providing them something such as free access to your product or service in exchange for mentioning them. 
  5. Monitor Google search engine results and tracks any new links each day so that if one of those sites is penalized, you will know immediately so you can cut off any future engagement. 
  6. When updating blogs, go through all older posts (within the last year) to see if they need updated anchor texts since Google may index old blog posts more often now than ever.

Always use the exact anchor text when creating links to other pages within your site but not necessarily linking outside of your website. If there are three different ways to reach a page, use the exact anchor text on each path and make sure it contains relevant keywords. Lastly, don't spam people with tons of emails- always take time and care in crafting personalized messages to individuals at various websites where you would like more exposure.

Where to Start, If You are New to Link Building?

For Starting Fresh in Link Building, make sure to follow these steps:

  1. First, discover your competitors' domain authority.
  2. Reverse engineer their link-building efforts.
  3. Build links using the exact anchor text they used.
  4. Use outreach to other websites by finding contact information of site administrators and contacting them with a summary of your website.
  5. Use social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to build followers who will then share your content with their friends and family. 
  6. Write guest blog posts on blogs in your industry or on related topics. 
  7. Build backlinks from high DA sites that are related to yours. 
  8. Offer prizes or giveaways for shares. 
  9. Earn reviews from customers. 
  10. Create evergreen content (content that is always valuable).
  11. Update existing articles or create new ones with links consecutively.

Ways To Earn Links That Boost SEO

You should be building links to increase your website's authority so that your site ranks higher in search engines. There are three main ways you can get links: do them on your own, do them with a service, or hire someone.

  • If you're new to the game and don't have any connections, it may be easier for you to start with a service or hire someone. You might also want to try a service if you're unsure what keywords or phrases are best for link building. But if you already know what keywords will work well, then it would be better to use one of the other two methods. 

  • If you want to acquire links yourself, there are many different places where you can find opportunities: from social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook to forums and blogs. The trick is going where your customers hang out, reading their content, seeing what they like about certain things, making comments about their posts when appropriate, following them on Twitter or Facebook (note: avoid being spammy), etc. until they decide they like you enough to consider linking back. 

Then when they write something relevant that could be good for both of you (for example, a blog post about getting more traffic through social media), mention it appropriately. Also, make sure you don't go too far overboard with self-promotion. It won't help your business, and people might think less of you. 

  • Another way to earn links is by asking for them. Send emails requesting permission to link and tell readers why you're contacting them.

  • The last technique involves reaching out to influencers and telling them how much you admire their work. Again, be polite but persistent, and always remember that timing matters—don't bother asking at 3 am!

With these methods, though, time and patience will be needed because it can take weeks before they come around to link back to you; however, if done right, it could boost your site's ranking


While Link Building doesn't guarantee easy success, it certainly helps stand out among the fierce competition. Whether you're just starting a new blog post about investment advice for kids or launching a new line of swimsuits available in six different colors, quality links to relevant content within your niche can significantly impact online sales. Follow this blog to get complete guidance on link building for SEO.