Link building is no longer the way it used to be.
In the past, link building merely involved getting links – either through buying or trading – into as many external pages as you can. But the Penguin update changed all that.
Not only have these tactics become a risky SEO strategy that could incur Google’s wrath, it could get you banned from the search engine altogether. In other words, strategies that worked back then can easily backfire now to cause more damages than good.
For example, you can no longer use automated software to get links. Also, Google now frowns on having links that are unrelated to the topics on your website.
While the list goes on and on, there are five essential link building don’ts that you absolutely must know.
5 Link Building Tactics You Must Avoid
Here are the link building strategies that can hurt your website.
1. Linking Only To The Homepage
Linking to your homepage is only appropriate if someone is writing about your brand. Otherwise, your link building may appear too spammy, and that’s not a good thing.
As such, it’s essential to link to various pages aside from your homepage. Whether it’s the product page, news, or blog page, your link building strategy must look as natural as possible.
In the end, it’ll not only earn you a trustworthy link profile, but it’ll also increase your conversion too.
2. Paying For Links
So, you already know it’s a bad idea to buy bulk links from link farms. But, what about from an individual company with a high authority website right in your niche? Surely, that can’t be wrong, right?
While Google will probably not notice a single link from one company, chances are the company is selling to other websites.
And, as the number of questionable link increases, the search engine may start paying attention.
Best case scenario, you could get hit by manual action – or worse, Penguin. Studies show that it’s easier to recover from a manual penalty than from the Penguin algorithm update.
3. Recycling Your Content on Different Sites
One of the most convenient ways to get links is to publish articles about your product or brand on multiple websites. While simply creating a single article for this purpose may be a good idea, it could easily backfire.
Even if you alter a couple of words and switch paragraphs, it still remains a duplicate to the original. So, write your articles from scratch and create great content that provides value.
Yes, it’s a lot of work. But, if link building was easy, SEO services won’t be a $72 Billion industry.
4. Forgetting About Social Media
Since the extent of social media’s influence on ranking is not entirely clear, you may be tempted to leave it out of your link building strategy. Don’t do it.
When you do manage to secure many links to other websites, it will look peculiar if you didn’t get any from social media sites. And Google could pick up on that weirdness and conclude that it’s spam.
So, invest in getting likes, tweets, and shares across various social platforms. After all, it’s still an excellent way to get traffic.
5. Faking The Links
While you may think that building a link that “looks natural” is enough, it isn’t. Your links must be natural!
This involves not only using links that could benefit the reader, but it must also fit into the page’s content. Rather than just trying to get as many backlinks as possible, consider adding links that tell readers more about your company, product, or brand.
Don’t add the links for the search engines; do it for the readers.