The authority of your website is based on almost everything in SEO. Technical SEO, SEO content, user interactions and a brand’s reputation and presence on the web, referred to as off page SEO.
When it comes to building up off page SEO, you’re going to need backlinks and/or citations. Building authority through link building and citations is all about creating an online footprint of a well-known and well-respected brand within its industry
Whether you need citations, backlinks, or both, depends on which search vertical a site is trying to rank in. As a rule, if a site needs local SEO to rank, in the map results, for a keyword search including a location, its citations you want, if you want to rank in other verticals backlinks have a greater impact but it doesn’t necessarily mean citations are irrelevant or that a citation can’t provide a valuable backlink.
It’s not just about getting more and more citations and backlinks though. The type and number of links and citations required varies from brand to brand, building links in a smart way is called contextual link building. Before I start a link building or citations campaign, I analyse my client’s search competitors’ links and citations to determine the types, number and frequency of links required to achieve a target rank.
A website needs to be an authority on a topic to rank for a keyword related to that topic. That means the focus isn’t only links from authoritative sources but links from authoritative sources, within your niche, from content that relates to the content it is linking too. When I build links or citations, the focus is on quality and context, without context the authority from backlinks doesn’t have the same impact.
In addition, search engines except authoritative websites to have content to match so when building up authority I always include a content review to ensure the site has the foundations to become an authority on a topic before money is invested link building.
The way Mr SEO Consultant approaches backlinks is unique, it’s with honesty. Even if you go to a backlink agency, they don’t always tell you how the link was acquired, many assume it was earned but there are different ways to earn a link or citation.
As I mentioned, the types of links you need will depends on your industry but regardless of industry most ranking websites are pro-actively earning links and usually have an organic link building strategy. I’ve seen a directory website organically build links by submitting its images to image stock libraries for free use with a credit link and I’ve seen a marketing agency earn links by paying for premium placements (with backlinks included) that were commonly scraped and spun into mediocre quality content destined for a mediocre domain but the context remained relevant and it worked for a digital marketing agency that needs many backlinks and can easily disavow any link picked up accidently that’s a little bit to toxic.
I find the best ways to earn links is organically, and quite often, if I can’t achieve the impossible, we can find the person who can. There are a million ways to earn links organically including press releases, publicity stunts, social media engagement campaigns or guest posting (to name a few) but sometimes a link building budget can help because some people “don’t sell links” but they have admin or placement fees (some very respectable publications too), others may already write for a publication and may write a contribution for us if we pay for their time as a writer and a budget can also be helpful for creating content such as infographics, blogs, Podcasts, videos and almost anything that can be used to earn backlinks and demonstrate a site’s authority on a topic.
If you want to try bulk buying links or automated link building schemes, I can help you with these, but they have little impact, good or bad. Automated citation building can be useful provided it’s done properly, and the citations are improved once set up but generally Google and other search engines are smart enough to tell what’s a valuable link that took expertise and authority on a topic to earn and what was an easy link. My approach is that if it was easy to get, anyone could get it and it’ll have no impact.
If you’re still tempted though go for it, of all the times I’ve tried the impact has been neither good nor bad. I even built an automated link pyramid with AI written content (spun by AI to be unique for each position of course ha ha ha) for one of my own sites and there was no impact. Of all the ways I’ve tried organic is the most impactful way and the way that avoids being hit by a penalty when search engines work out the latest link building scheme and penalise those taking part.
First, I analyse the sites that rank for the keywords you want to rank for. After that I will review your sites content and if required, make improvements to strengthen its authority on a topic. From competitor activity I’ll have a good idea about what off page SEO needs to take place to establish your site as an authority on a topic and for a target keyword, so straight away we can begin building backlinks.
That depends on the intensity of your campaign, but websites are crawled frequently, and we a crawl can be requested. Ranks in search engine results pages aren’t static, they change throughout the day, they are different from location to location and for different users based on their behaviour and Google’s perception of their search intent.
If the intensity of a campaign is suitable a site can see a positive impact within days, and I’ve even achieved page one number one ranks for extremely competitive keywords from nothing within a few weeks.
While authority metrics from Moz or Majestic are important search engines (especially Google) like the active player of the moment so a site working hard on its SEO campaign can out rank a site with a higher domain authority.
SEO is a marketing campaign so the harder and faster the campaign, the sooner a site will realise its ranking goal.
That depends on the competitive intensity for the keyword rank. I’ve earned some page one number one ranks that require no direct page work to maintain and I’ve achieved some highly competitive page one ranks that require a full-time SEO team to maintain. As a rule of thumb, the ranks that are more difficult to achieve are the ones that require more time to maintain. When I plan which keywords, I’m trying to rank a site for I have some indication of how much work will be required to maintain them and can advise on this before a campaign begins. Despite that, it’s not definite and depends on competitor activity. If you take a rank and they work ten times harder to get it back, it goes without saying that you’d have to work at least eleven times harder to earn it back. It’s why in some of the most competitive industries the cost of SEO is eye-watering and almost not worth it for smaller companies that might find cheaper distribution and promotional channels.
Do you want to know how your site scores from an authority perspective and discover ways to improve your one and off page SEO authority? Book a free one-hour SEO consultancy on my online calendar.