Today, businesses face the daunting challenge of standing out in a saturated online market, especially within their local communities.
This problem is further agitated by the ever-changing algorithms of search engines and the increasing importance of local search engine optimisation (SEO).
Traditional SEO strategies may seem like the answer, but they often fall short when it comes to targeting a local audience.
Enter local link building – a powerful strategy in the realm of local SEO. This approach focuses on creating locally relevant links to your business website, driving organic foot traffic, and enhancing your site’s ranking for local search results.
By understanding and implementing effective local link-building strategies, businesses can navigate the complexities of the digital landscape, boost their online presence, and attract more local customers, ultimately driving business growth.
Understanding Local Link Building
Local link building is a specialised strategy within the broader scope of SEO. It involves creating and acquiring links from websites that are relevant to your local area or industry.
These links, known as backlinks, are hyperlinks from other websites that point back to your business website.
The primary goal of local link building is to increase organic foot traffic to your site and improve your site’s ranking for local search results and in relevant map packs.
Map packs are the group of businesses that Google displays on the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) when a user performs a local search.
When these backlinks come from authoritative websites, they can significantly boost your domain authority.
Domain authority is a search engine ranking score that predicts how likely a website is to rank on SERPs.
A higher domain authority translates to greater visibility and a higher likelihood of appearing in local search results.
For more information on how to improve your domain authority, you can check out the SEO services.
Importance of Local Link Building
Local link building is a cornerstone for ranking in Google and other search engines. Backlinks are seen as a vote of confidence from one site to another.
When a site links to your business website, it signals to search engines that your content is valuable and trustworthy.
Backlinks are one of the main ranking factors for local SEO. They improve your website’s credibility and enhance user engagement, click-through rates, and conversion rates while reducing the bounce rate.
The bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who navigate away from your site after viewing only one page.
A lower bounce rate indicates that visitors find your content valuable and spend more time on your site.
Our SEO services can help with this. For more information on how to optimise your Google My Business profile, check out this article.
Strategies for Local Link Building
There are several strategies for effective local link building. One of the most effective is creating local content that resonates with your audience.
This could be blog posts about local events, guides to your local area, or articles about local industry news.
This type of content encourages other local websites to link to your content, increasing your backlinks.
Another strategy is to claim unlinked brand mentions. These are instances where another website mentions your business but doesn’t link back to your site.
You can turn these mentions into valuable backlinks by reaching out to these sites and asking them to add a link.
Adding relevant internal links to your content also helps in improving your site’s SEO. Internal links are hyperlinks that point to another page on the same website.
They help search engines understand the structure of your website and can help spread link equity around your site.
You can read this article for more insights on how to effectively use internal links.
Local citations are online mentions of a business’s name, address, and phone number. They play a pivotal role in local SEO.
They help local users find local businesses and significantly impact local search engine rankings.
Ensuring your business is listed in local directories, trade organisations, and charities can enhance local visibility.
These listings provide potential backlink opportunities and increase the number of places where local customers can find your business.
Tools for Local Link Building
Several tools can aid in local link building. Whitespark and Moz Local are some of the most popular ones.
These tools can help you identify potential backlink opportunities, track your local ranking performance, and manage your local citations effectively.
Whitespark helps you find potential citation opportunities and track your existing citations. Moz Local helps you manage your local business listings to ensure they are consistent across the web.
Here are some of the most popular tools for local link building:
- Ahrefs: A popular tool for link building and SEO, Ahrefs provides comprehensive backlink data and analysis.
- Google: While not a traditional link-building tool, Google’s vast index of web pages and advanced search algorithm makes it a great resource for finding link prospects.
- Hunter.io: This tool helps you find email addresses associated with a particular domain for outreach purposes.
- Buzzstream: A tool designed for outreach and relationship building, Buzzstream helps you manage your outreach campaigns and track your progress.
- HARO: Short for Help A Reporter Out, this tool connects you with journalists looking for expert sources, allowing you to build natural backlinks.
- BrightLocal: A local SEO tool that helps you build citations and track your local search rankings.
- Pitchbox: Similar to Buzzstream, Pitchbox is a tool for outreach and relationship building that helps you manage your outreach campaigns and track your progress.
- Moz Link Explorer: A link analysis tool that provides data on backlinks and anchor text.
- Semrush: A comprehensive tool for all things SEO, including link building, Semrush provides backlink data and analysis.
- URL Profiler: A tool that helps you analyse URLs and extract data for link-building purposes.
- Linkody: A tool that helps you check backlinks, analyse your profile of backlinks, and compare your link profile to your competitors.
- Majestic SEO: A tool that provides an extensive “Link Intelligence” database by crawling and mapping the web.
- NeverBounce: A tool that helps you verify email addresses for outreach purposes.
- SEO Toolbar: A browser extension that provides data on backlinks, keywords, and other SEO metrics.
Note that some of these tools are free, while others require a subscription or payment.
For more advanced strategies, you can consider our technical SEO services.
Google Maps and Link Building
Ranking in Google Maps is an integral part of a local SEO strategy. Local backlinks can help improve your visibility in Google Maps, driving more local traffic to your site.
Ensuring your Google Business Profile is optimised and regularly updated is also crucial for better ranking in Google Maps.
By understanding and implementing effective link-building strategies, businesses can enhance their online presence, attract more local customers, and ultimately drive business growth.
Remember, while link building is a powerful tool, it’s essential to avoid spammy backlinks and focus on quality over quantity.
Link building is a crucial strategy in SEO that involves acquiring hyperlinks from other websites to your own.
These backlinks serve as a vote of confidence, signalling to search engines that your site provides valuable content.
Effective link-building strategies can significantly enhance your online visibility, improve your site’s credibility, and boost your ranking on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
There are several tools available to aid in local link building, including Ahrefs, Google, Hunter.io, Buzzstream, HARO, BrightLocal, Pitchbox, Moz Link Explorer, Semrush, URL Profiler, Linkody, Majestic SEO, NeverBounce, and SEO Toolbar.
Why is link building considered an effective SEO strategy?
Link building is considered an effective SEO strategy because it helps search engines discover new web pages and determine how well a page should rank in their results. When your website has a high number of quality backlinks, it signals to search engines that your content is valuable and trustworthy, which can significantly improve your site’s ranking on SERPs.
What are the key elements of a successful link-building strategy?
The key elements of a successful link-building strategy include creating high-quality, relevant content that others will want to link to, promoting your content to relevant audiences, building relationships with influencers and other websites in your industry, and regularly analysing and refining your link-building efforts.
What are the three types of link building?
The three types of link building are:
- Natural Links: These are links that are given without any action from the page owner. For example, a food blogger adding a link to a post that points readers to their favourite produce supplier.
- Manually Built Links: These links are acquired through deliberate link-building activities. This could involve asking customers to link to your website or paying for a service to post your link on their website.
- Self-Created Links: These are created by practices such as adding a backlink in an online directory, forum, blog comment signature, or a press release with optimized anchor text. Some self-created link-building tactics tend towards black-hat SEO and are frowned upon by search engines.