Does your content attract links? When you build links, do you only build them to your homepage?
There are two reasons why you need to build links to your blog posts.
Temporal/Historical Link Acquisition
In order to maintain a healthy, growing site, you should be obtaining links at about the same rate as you are adding pages. If you’re publishing new content and not receiving new links, this could be a bad signal to Google.
We can’t be perfect like that Wikipedia graph, but how close are you?
The truth is, most content isn’t capable of naturally acquiring links. As a blogger, you’ve probably noticed that blogging regularly doesn’t mean you’re picking up links regularly as well. The posts need to be truly exceptional, or be published on a site with massive reach.
This means you’ll need to build some of the links yourself in the mean time.
Deep Link Ratio
You should also be maintaining a reasonable deep link ratio.
This means that pages besides your homepage should be getting links too. Deep link ratio was possibly a signal used in the Penguin update, but regardless building deep links will be great for your overall domain authority and crawl rates.
How to Build Links with Existing Content
The purest solution to this problem is to publish exceptional content on a popular blog. Well…
While you’re on your way there, you can do some of the link building yourself using these methods. The tactics here simply leverage your content marketing efforts, and can be used for a post you just published or for older posts.
NOTE: I hate doing outreach. I don’t like getting outreach emails, and I don’t like sending them. Not to mention, the ROI is so low, it’s not really an activity anyone outside of a dedicated SEO (with the right tools) should be doing. These tactics don’t involve begging for links 🙂
1. RSS & Blog Directory Submission
There are tons of directories that list blogs or blog feeds, and link back to your most recent posts. You’ll get a link to your homepage and often a link to each of your newest posts. This means new links to every post you publish automatically.
Here’s a big list of such directories:
There’s a lot so do a few a day in your spare time and skip over any lousy ones, or outsource submission.
2. Add More Pinging Services to WordPress
Every time you publish a post, WordPress pings Pingomatic (http://rpc.pingomatic.com) which helps notify search engines and other sites tracking the update service. This can lead to getting more visitors and links.
You can add a lot more update services to increase the effect. WordPress has a list available on the codex that you can copy in paste into the “Update Services” section at the bottom of your Writing settings page.
3. Update Internal Links
When we publish new content we often link to posts we’ve written, but how often do you go back to old posts and add links to new, related posts?
A related post plugin won’t really cut it. Links after the content aren’t as valuable as real editorial links within the content. Take a look at your published posts, and add new internal links between posts wherever relevant.
4. Setup Automated Curation Tools
There’s been a rise in the number of available curation tools lately. The one I recommend using is paper.li because it can be automated.
Select a topic for your paper that matches the topic of your site, and add sources. When adding sources, I’ve found the most reliable and easiest way is to add RSS feeds from other sites.
With your own RSS feed included, you can set the paper to publish every day or week, and there will be a new page linking to a recent post (or more) of yours, surrounded by relevant content from other blogs.
You can promote it and share with your network as well. The papers usually turn out great 🙂
5. Convert & Submit
You’ve created content and published it in the form of a blog post. It’s pretty easy to later take that same content and republish it in a different format elsewhere.
Make sure everything you submit is visually appealing and you’re just as proud of it as you are your original post. Otherwise, don’t submit.
6. Write a Detailed Summary
Write a more succinct version of your post with just the main points and then share it elsewhere linking to the full post. The goal is to make the short version genuinely helpful on its own, and include the link to the full post for those that want the more thorough, full post.
You can share the summary:
- in a new thread in relevant forum
- in a google+ community
- as a detailed blog post comment (if relevant)
Also, some VBulletin forums let their members have blogs on the forum, which is another good place to submit the summary.
7. Leverage Copy & Paste
People copy and paste content from your site more often than you realize. Some may link, others never will, but some would if they remembered.
Tynt will automatically add a linked citation with content that is copied and pasted from your site.
Most people will delete the link, but there are some that will leave you the link and otherwise would not have.
8. Write a Guest Post
Sometimes you can’t say everything you want to say in one post, or more insights come up in the comments.
If you’ve got a good idea for a post related to one you’ve published, turn it into a guest post. This makes it easy to include an editorial link to your original post, and the post itself will be relevant which makes for a better link.
Find a blog that would be happy to publish your post, and then write it for them. If they don’t respond, you’ve still got a good post you can publish on your site or another blog.
9. Make an Infographic
You can turn any post into an infographic. Instead of republishing the infographic as a new post, just update the old post with the additional infographic and then use the infographic to build links.
It’s quite a lot of work to make an infographic, but there are tons of infographic directories out there to submit to.
10. Get Links from People Who Used Your Images
If you have been creating and publishing your own images and infographics, there are probably other sites that have used them. Find them with Image Raider or a reverse google image search and ask them to add a link to the post where you originally published it.
Okay I lied, this is the one outreach method. The difference in this method from most is that the contact has already gotten value from you.
Content Marketing Vs Link Building
The above tactics work great in conjunction with a content marketing strategy. Think of them as an enhancement – a way to squeeze every last drop of potential out of your content.
With a little time away from publishing to apply these tactics, you’ll see an increase in your rankings.