For many years, link building has been one of the many practices to improve search engine optimization. The old practices of link building include guest blogging, posting links on forum sites, placing links on footers or right rails, infographics, and many more. Although these methods have proven to improve traffic and raise the ranks of some sites in the search engines, it is sad to say that these are, to an extent, not recommended anymore. Most search engines, particularly Google, have recently updated their algorithms to attack such practices and penalize websites that employ them. As a result, instead of ranking high on the SERPs, some sites are no longer included in the list of results.
This, however, does not mean that link building should be totally abandoned by businesses and webmasters. Besides, link building is actually a form of marketing your product by placing your links to other sites as a way of advertisement. Hence, this strategy cannot be deemed illegal to use. The answer to proper link building lies in the region where it will not be considered as spamming by search engines and you can get there by focusing on building your brand.
The only reason why search engines are closing in on bad link building practices is that they want to improve their service. When internet users search for something on the web, they want to be able to provide relevant and high quality results so that readers will continue using their engines. However, when links are splattered all over the web and if they direct readers to sites with poor and irrelevant content, the purpose of search engines in providing good results will fail. This is why they will only allow quality links now and that means improving your site.
It all comes back to your brand. If the search engines see that you are creating links to improve your reputation and not just to win more customers, then they will begin to value your link and your site, and you will not have to worry about being penalize.
Therefore, the first step to link building is improving your site. Ask yourself, would you be proud to share your links with anyone because you know that it will direct them to a good website with great content? Would you be willing to spend money and time to post your link on other sites even if these search engines do not exist? Are you confident that your customers will regard your links as good? If you answer yes to these questions, then you must be more confident that search engines value your links as well.
Second, be minimal with your link building. If you were used to posting five links to other sites each day, significantly drop that number. Some webmasters only build two to three links a month now to stay away from the radar of search engine crawlers that seek for spam links. Make these few links valuable, though, by placing them in sites that are relevant to your niche and have high daily traffic.
Third, go for citations. Text links on guest posts, especially if excessively done, are not recommended anymore. Instead, find a website or a blog site that is relevant to your niche and is considered an authority in your industry then ask the owner of that site to make an attribution or citation to your site. This way it will look like the owner of that site have high regards to your site. As you can see, this goes back to building your brand’s reputation first and filling your site with quality content.
Building links nowadays may not be as easy as before, but it is still possible and it can still help with your SEO. You just need to be updated with the changes in search engine algorithms so that you know what practices to avoid. Further, you now need to focus more on quality instead of quantity.