- 15 Nov, 2011
- Jon Tucker
- 2 Comments
In order to increase your Google rankings, it’s important to always be pursuing link building– that is, you should be constantly getting links to your website so that Google can see that you’re an authority in your niche.
The problem here is link building is not easy to do.
Link Building Opportunities Are Everywhere
While basic link building tactics like directory submissions might seem obvious, finding ways to outsmart your competitors and get unique links can be challenging unless you know where to look. When we work with our SEO clients, we take the time to look deep into every aspect of their business and develop a very unique link building campaign that leverages aspects of their business that competitors can’t duplicate.
Leveraging everyone that you work with that has a website is important- this includes customers and clients, suppliers and partners, and even marketing and referral partners. If someone you work with has a website, they could easily provide a link to your site if you position the request the right way.
Providing Website Badges to Contacts
One frequently successful way to get links from your business contacts is to provide them with a “badge” for their website. In short, a badge is an image that signifies their involvement with your company that is placed on their website and links back to a page on your website.
This badge is a win for the linking website as it showcases their affiliation with your company (for credibility or authority purposes with their own customers) and is a win for you because you’re getting links to your website from diverse websites that most likely would never be linking to your competitors.
When Would People Consider Showcasing Your Badge?
Below are a few common reasons prospects would publish your badge to their site:
- Awards– They have been nominated for an award that you’re giving out- you’d be surprised at the unique types of award programs you can put together in almost any business.
- 5 Star Testimonial– You can provide them with a 5 star review image with commentary that they can use to showcase your satisfaction in working with them.
- Newsletter Contributor– You can invite them to contribute to your blog or newsletter. They can then promote themselves as a trusted industry author via a badge you provide to them, which is a credibility indicator for their business.
These are just a few common opportunities- half the fun of a link building project for us is working with you to identify opportunities in your business you may not have previously considered.
Here’s an Example of Badges in Action
One client that we work with helps CPAs with accounting marketing and tax education (yes, these 2 links help with their SEO). This client has accountant members all across the country and most have their own website. This is a perfect opportunity for providing a website badge image that links back to the client’s website.
We identified this opportunity while doing a thorough discovery process at the start of her SEO project. We then worked with her to create resources and tools that could be used to make the process of offering this to 100’s of website owners at once efficient and managed the entire process of getting badges published- we even worked with a number of her members to publish the badge shown here to their sites for them.
The Results? Lots of Links FAST
The campaign was a resounding success in that we built a large number of links in a scalable way- over 2500 links across 100+ websites within a relatively short period of time. What’s even better is that these links were all from very diverse websites since her members are basically small business owners (i.e. local accountants) around the country. This looks very unique to Google compared to traditional link building campaigns where you get links from the same websites that your competitors have links from.
The results aren’t always this big in such a short period of time, but a properly executed website badge link building campaign can help you leap frog over your competitors in terms of the links that your website has.
Quick Start Guide to Your Campaign
No matter what business your in, there are always opportunities to build links using a badge campaign such as the one above- the number of links may be smaller, but the power to influence your Google rankings is still there.
Here’s a few quick tips to get started:
- Identify Prospects– List any customers / clients, referral partners, suppliers, or other contacts that you work with in any way. Make the list as comprehensive as possible.
- Consider Their Incentive– What reason could these prospects have to link to your site? This can be to demonstrate their credibility by using your products and services, communicate their partnership in working with you, etc. This is where the creativity of an experienced link builder comes in, but there’s always an incentive that can be created.
- Make the Request– Once you have the prospects, incentive, and actual badge in place, the process of adding the badge to their site involves providing them with a few lines of code that their website designer can copy onto their site. You can make the request one-to-one if pursuing a small number of prospects, but tools such as Google Docs web forms are helpful to ask prospects to fill out if you’re asking them for information (such as their website login info for you to add the badge yourself).
We would love to discuss opportunities related to your business- feel free to contact us anytime or comment below with your questions.