When building a content marketing platform, be it a blog or FAQ section of a website, many writers ignore one of the most vital components of proper marketing strategies: link building. Many writers underestimate the power of incorporating links and instead believe that great content will speak for itself. Ignoring the value of strategically placing links throughout important content is ignoring the opportunity to gain the higher visibility and traffic you’ve been searching for.
But how exactly do these links provide such value? For one, they are crucial to search visibility. When links are incorporated into content, they yield higher visibility to searchers. Top SEO’s believe that external links are the most important source of ranking power on the web. This is due to the fact that external links are a more stable metric and an easier metric to measure due to being publicly visible and easier to store. In addition, external links are one of the hardest metrics to manipulate, and are therefore deemed more trustworthy. By linking out to others, you are also building a relationship that could perhaps lead to them linking back to you, and creating a mutually beneficial relationship between parties.
While external linking is important, internal linking is another crucial component to building traffic and works in tandem with external links. Internal links help you get the most out of the external links that you acquire. Internal links help to build a “flow” throughout the website, and make sure that any important information you mention can be linked back to the source on your site. Internal links make the page user-friendly while helping you to gain traffic from the inside. Without proper linking, you may be preventing your users from uncovering the “hidden gems” located throughout your site.
Link building helps to build an authority that speaks volumes of your credibility as an author or contributor. Trustworthy sites tend to link to other trustworthy sites, and therefore users can ensure that what they are reading is not simply some uninformative spam. Some estimate that as much as 60% of the web’s pages are spam, and therefore search engines measure their trust ranking through earning and sharing links from highly trusted domains. The more you share and the more that is shared with you, the more the web sees you as credible, and the more visible you become.
No amount of high quality content or PR can make up for the traffic lost through improper or lacking links throughout one’s site. Link building, both internally and externally, yields a very high return for the small amount of time invested and can dramatically change your social and online ranking. Proper link building requires creativity and intelligence, but with proper execution, your site will quickly become a valuable, informative, and entertaining resource.