Last Updated on September 9, 2020
Building Business Not Just SEO
SEO links built with a White Hat mentality is really all about relationships. Link Building is closer to Business Development than technical SEO. Learn what it means to build links the White Hat way and why SEO is a just side benefit and not the objective for link building.Ready to Talk?
What If Google Went Away?
Imagine if Google vanished tomorrow. Are all your link building activities done with getting SEO brownie points from Google in mind (e.g., rankings on SERPs)? If so, you’re focused on the wrong objective. I know that’s a strong statement. Let me give you an example.
Let’s say you design and sell specialty dog collars. Your clientele is the rich and famous. These are the folks who don’t blink at putting real gems onto leashes and other doggie accouterments. A link from Petco — while it’s from a relevant and authoritative source — probably won’t drive you many qualified buyers. As a comparison, you have a colleague who is a high-end pet sitter. They are on a first-name basis with Hollywood’s élite. Imagine getting a link from this pet sitter’s website. While their site may have fewer visitors than Petco, each of those visitors are your ideal client. A click could mean a multi-thousand dollar sale. That link represents an important relationship. Getting that link would bring you sales.
SEO Links Using a White Hat
I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s worth saying again. According to Matt Cutts, Google is handing out over 400,000 manual penalties every month to websites who have unnatural link profiles. Specifically, Google is targeting sites that are amassing links without regard to quality in order to gain SEO rankings rather than build links based upon real relationships that can drive qualified traffic and sales. Link building, using White Hat strategies, are:
- Real. You have some kind of affiliation or business relationship that helps both your websites. It’s open, honest and helpful communication.
- Long Lasting. You aren’t speed dating or stalking Webmasters. You want a link to be of high quality that lasts over time. Consider a longer view by being helpful to others. It’s those strong, long-term relationships that can’t be poached by other (e.g., your competitors).
- Slow & Steady. If your link profile grows at an unnatural pace (more than 5 a month), it looks fishy. To put things into perspective, I’ve worked full-time link building for a client and the average was 2 or so a month. Quality links are not created with email blasts. It requires picking up the phone and having a conversation.
If you want more detail, check out this great How-To guide from Moz on Link Building.
So, are you building links for relationships and business? Or are you focused on its side benefit (SEO)? If it’s the latter, we think you should reshape how you’re doing things. Because how you approach Link Building will influence the results you get.