January 20, 2010
Inbound, good-quality links are a struggle for me. I can sort though all sorts of tech stuff resulting in a good-looking, professional website, but link building is a real challenge.
Partly it's a challenge because of tiny budgets, but also because of some lack of experience in doing this, especially with brick-and-mortar businesses that don't have much going on. They might be a member of a Chamber of Commerce, probably no other professional organizations, certainly not in the news, don't have much to say other than the fact that they do a job. They're not social bees, as neither am I...so I can empathize. Coming up with 5 pages is a challenge in itself.
Do you have any suggestions, anything you can point me to?
I definitely feel your pain! Unfortunately, today, in order to be successful for mildly competitive keyword phrases, you do have to have something on your website that goes beyond your products and services. Many small businesses are not willing or able to do that.
If they're not, then they should still be able to do okay with the not-so-very-competitive keyword phrases. You really only need a handful of links to show up in a local market for those types of phrases. Getting them into all the directories available should take care of that.
But if they want to take things to the next level or if they're in a competitive industry, they'll probably need more than that. In which case, they'll need to have a blog or a resource section, free whitepapers, videos, or anything else on their site that gives others in their industry a reason to link to them.
It shouldn't cost that much to have an intern or someone aggregate industry news and post a few thoughts about the interesting stuff on a blog each week. Those types of posts can also link out to the other bloggers in the field and create relationships whereby they may link back to your site as well.
If you're really stuck for ideas, we're offering a new "Link-Building Roadmap" service where we do the research and provide a boatload of places that would be a good fit to link to sites in your specific niche.
Of course, as previously mentioned, you do need something worth linking to for this information to be worthwhile.
Hope this helps!
Jill Whalen is the CEO of High Rankings, a Boston SEO Services company.
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