9 Ways To Earn High-Authority Backlinks For Great SEO

James Henry Blake is a Northern Ireland-born entrepreneur and Founder/CEO at Vindicta Digital, a UK digital marketing agency est. in 2016

Attempting to keep up with Google’s ever-changing page ranking algorithms can sometimes feel like catching fog. Just when you think you have the answer to what our search engine overlords are looking for, they change the question. 

Thankfully, there are a handful of evergreen techniques you can use to bolster your SEO and overall Google quality score. High-authority backlinks are chief among these.

Think of backlinks as the LinkedIn endorsements of the SEO world. If your website is linked to by another site that enjoys good standing with Google, some of that all-important influence will be bestowed upon your domain. This convinces Google that your content is relevant as well as educational, authoritative and trustworthy (EAT), leading to a ranking boost.

How can a site go about achieving these backlinks, though? Stuffing a dummy site and acting as a link farm is black hat SEO 101 and will do your website’s reputation more harm than good in the longer term. 

Instead, follow these tried and trusted techniques utilized by our very own SEO teams at Vindicta Digital and can aid your site in gaining those all-important backlinks.

Identify opportunities.

First thing’s first: If you want to attract backlinks, you need to learn what opportunities are out there. The easiest way to do this is by finding out what your competitors are doing, then repeating the trick while offering added value.

Find and replace broken links.

A fast — and free — way to gain backlinks is locating broken links on popular webpages and pitching your content to replace them. Find a website in your niche and identify any 404 links within the text. One way to make this easier is to use a tool like Dead Link Checker.

Once you have pinpointed a popular resource with dead links, contact the webmaster and explain that you have content that can replace a defunct backlink. This is a win-win: The original site is no longer redirecting visitors to non-existent resources, and you are gaining backlinks with minimal effort.

Guest-blog your way to the top.

Guest blogs and articles on market-leading websites are a great way to increase awareness of your brand. This does not always lead to direct backlinks, but it can drive more traffic and social media interaction to your corner of the internet. Backlinks will follow this surge in traffic and reputation.

It’s easy enough to find high-authority websites that welcome guest posts — Google the term “write for us” alongside a relevant keyword. Just remember that these need to be high-authority sites with plenty of followers.

Don’t be shy about self-promotion.

We live in a “don’t ask, don’t get” society. While it’s lovely to imagine that the quality of your website will attract organic attention, you’ll likely need to indulge in a little self-promotion to get noticed in a crowded marketplace.

Reach out to influential websites and news outlets, ideally those that provide regular roundups of the news in your industry. Contact these publications, explaining how and why you have an article that would be relevant to the interests of their readers.

Gain an expert reputation through interviews.

Getting the name of your website out there is a great way to attract backlinks. As we have discussed, people want to connect to a site that satisfies Google’s EAT algorithm. Do whatever it takes to gain such a reputation — with interviews being the easiest way to do so. The more your name crops up on other websites and podcasts, the likelier people are to backlink to your web presence.

Embrace influencers.

Of course, you will not be the only important voice in any business niche, no matter how famous you may become. Keep the lines of communication open with influential bloggers and journalists. 

Draft up a short, sharp pitch and explain why backlinking to your site is in their best interests. The more people are talking about your site, the better.

Use charts and infographics.

Infographics are among the most popular ways to relay information in the modern era. The human brain processes visual data faster than text, making charts and graphs eminently sharable. 

Once you have an eye-catching and informative infographic, unleash it into the wild. Directories can be invaluable here. Just take the time to pitch your infographics to sources that do not already have similar data on their site. 

Avoid making a hard sell for a backlink, too. Asking for feedback is likelier to see results than outright requesting credit and sharing. Sites like to feel that they are discovering untapped talent and providing value to their users, not acting as link farms.

Link internally.

Internal links are backlinks, too. Cross-promote and link your content throughout your website. This will have a positive impact on UX and keep users on your site. Just ensure the anchor texts and microcopy are relevant to user intent.

Be charitable.

Purchasing commercial backlinks is the ultimate false economy. Google frowns upon this practice. If they spot you doing it, your website will be harshly penalized during the next algorithm update. 

Making donations to a nonprofit is a different story. If you find a website that welcomes donations, open your cyber checkbook. Along with your donation, you’ll be asked for your URL. Voila — you have a new high-authority backlink.

Just remember, you need to donate to sites that actively ask for and encourage this financial assistance. Pitching backlinks to a site in exchange for a brown envelope of used notes will not bolster your page ranking. It will have the opposite effect.

As you can see, there are many great ways to earn backlinks. Utilizing the tips in this article will hopefully allow for massive success with backlink building.

Forbes Agency Council is an invitation-only community for executives in successful public relations, media strategy, creative and advertising agencies. Do I qualify?