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Earning Link Citations: The New Approach to SEO

Earning Link Citations: The New Approach to SEO image link building 300x164Earning Link citations is not only an important aspect of improving SEO performance – it seems to be the direction SEO is currently heading. Updates to search engine algorithms have been leading to a more social approach to SEO for some time, and more and more weight is being placed on link citations from reputable and trusted sites around the net.

According to Rand Fishkin at SEOMoz, earning link citations is the most important way to build your SEO. This means that you should put effort into creating content that people will want to share and repost. It’s also helpful to differentiate your content, to build your credibility and provide a wealth of information for readers to share and consume. There are several different ways to earn link citations, and in this article I will explore some of these ways to improve your SEO.

Social Media Shares

One of the simplest ways to earn more links is to share content on social media outlets. Content should vary, and it should be both useful and relevant to the people you are reaching, because the goal is to get them to like, share, or even repost it.

This content should also vary in nature – if your posts always have the same message or too similar content, it will quickly start to feel spammy. If content is relevant, useful, or engaging to viewers, odds are they will be happy to share it with others who might be interested.

Link Sharing through Guest Posts

Link sharing can help build link citations on popular and reputable blogs and websites, and bring you increased traffic. Guest posts are a great way to do this – by providing quality content to established blogs, your piece will have an instant boost in SEO value. According to Rand Fishkin at SEOMoz, it’s best to get posts on picky blogs that care a great deal about the content they produce. Successful blogs with popular posts and content rank very well in search ranks.

Partnerships:

You can build up a lot of valuable link citations by partnering with another blog or service. Both companies can incorporate links to each other’s blog and website. Oftentimes, a partner company in a relevant industry will have reach to many additional business contacts in their network.

Partnerships can help both businesses quite a bit, and by maintaining them over time you can establish a great number of valuable link citations.

Answer Customer Questions

If customers are posting questions about your industry in forums around the web, you know that the demand for content is out there. And if people are asking questions or having trouble with your products and services, then a solution or answer will sound best coming from you. Users are likely to share, like, or rate the most appropriate or useful answers, which could help increase your visibility.

Answering customer questions could not only help you maintain or improve your reputation, but also provide another place to share a link citation to helpful content you offer. If you provide a good solution to the questions people are asking, they will likely be happy to share it with others.

Earn – Don’t Build links for Better SEO

Rand Fishkin at SEOMoz explains the principles behind link sharing in this informative and helpful video.

Fishkin notes that, “By and large Google is trying to end the practice of link building and renew the practice of link earning.” This does lead to a much more social approach to SEO, and seems to encourage businesses to build on their online communities and networks to maintain strong search results. By building a strong social network of influencers, you can get much more of your content out directly to a much wider audience, and also greatly improve your SEO rankings.

What strategies have you used to increase your link citations? Do you use forums or partner with other companies?

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  1. Thomas says:

    Cheers Ross, I recall Rand was the first person to coin the phrase “Link Earning”. As well as social media we find another effective way to share content is through distributing press releases.

    • Rand is fantastic – always very insightful without over-complicating things. I love his his Whiteboard Fridays – the’yre a great way to keep up with new ideas in SEO.

  2. Samuel Chan says:

    “One of the simplest ways to earn more links is to share content on social media outlets”

    Simplest, but often the most ineffective. If any social media outlet is worth the effort, here are probably the only 10 things you need to do a considerably good job:

    http://www.officialsamuel.com/blog/social-seo-steps/

  3. So far I’ve found guest blogging to be the most productive way to produce more links and build traffic. It’s an effective way to build a platform, but it’s a lot of work and probably not for everybody.

    • It’s true, Matt, guest blogging can be a lot of work – but it can give you some great visibility. I think it’s a good way to gear your ideas and concepts to a different target audience, depending on the blog you are guest-writing for.

  4. Jason says:

    These are all great ways to earn links. I have also found guest blogging to be the most productive even if it takes a lot of work. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Great Stuff Ross,
    I found social media and guest blogging is the most effective way to produce more traffic for the business and to get a quality links. In addition to this, as you have discussed about the partner linking these values but it’s an uphill task to convince other firm’s to promote us on their website.

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