5 Interesting SEO and Link Building Tips I’ve Read Lately

Now that I’m in the middle of building a niche site, one of the most important things that I need to do is figure out how to get the site to rank well (on the first page of Google).

Keyword research is obviously a big part of that, but once you’ve started building the site, your focus really turns to content and SEO.  Although the SEO environment continues to evolve, it seems that most of the same old principles still apply.  When I refer to “SEO” here, 90% of what I’m referring to is link building.

I’m not an SEO expert, which is why I went on a search for tips from those who are (or who are at least really experienced).

One thing you will notice is that some of these SEO and link building tips come from the same sources – that more of just a function of the blogs that I read and follow on a regular basis. Wherever applicable, I will include a link to the direct source so that you can read more if you so desire.

(By the way, the below tips are in no particular order.)

1) .EDU and .GOV Backlinks are Easier to Build Than You Think

Although .edu and .gov domains, by themselves, don’t have any “magical” SEO attributes beyond that of your typical .com domain, most people will agree that the sites built on these domains are usually high quality, trust-worthy sites in the eyes of Google.  Whether it’s a government agency or a top-tier university, these are sites that scream “authority.”

Building links on these sites may seem next to impossible, but in fact, it’s quite easy if you know where to look.  One of the easiest ways to place links on these sites is through blog comments, an old link building technique that you may have thought was dead.  Many of these colleges or government organizations have blogs, and many of these blogs allow comments.

The key here is to manually write these comments, and make sure that your comments actually add value to the article or discussion.  The goal here is to not spam these blogs.

How can you find these sites?

There are some search strings you can use, but there’s a site that makes it even easier:  http://dropmylink.com/

On this site, you can simply input a keyword that’s relevant to the site for which you’re trying to build links, and select the type of  site you’d like to build links on.

When you’re actually leaving the blog comment, don’t put your target keyword as your name. More times than not, this will keep your comment from being approved.  Use your actual name (or a pen name), or your name + your site’s name (for example, “Eric @ My 4-Hour Workweek“).

[Source:  Neil Patel's Advanced Guide to Link Building, Chapter 5  - Check out this page for some additional ways to obtain .edu and .gov links.]

2) Getting Backlinks from Wikipedia.org

Wikipedia is easily one of the most authoritative sites on the internet today.  Despite the fact that anyone can edit its content, it features over 4 million articles (encyclopedia entries, really) that are remarkably detailed and accurate.  This is mostly thanks to a dedicated mass who is interested in maintaining the integrity and accuracy of Wikipedia articles.

Knowing that, how can you expect to build links to your site, from these articles?  If you attempt to just drop your link on a relevant article, watch how quickly it gets removed.

There’s a technique I read about recently (source below) that seems to have a higher success rate for Wikipedia article backlinks.  Although these links are nofollow, they can still add tremendous value to your site’s backlink profile, and even generate additional traffic too (depending on how popular the Wikipedia article is).

Here’s how it works:

1) Find a Wikipedia article that is highly relevant to your site’s content.

2) Find content that is either missing or requires elaboration, and write an article on your site exclusively for that purpose.

3) Update the Wikipedia article to include that missing or elaborated content.

4) Add your site’s page to the “References” section of the Wikipedia article.

[Source: Niche Pursuits - Success Story: Profiting from Niche Sites After Only 2 Months!]

3) On-Page SEO: The Right Way to Do It (12 Key Factors)

Here I’m going to share with you an infographic I came across recently that basically shows you the key factors that you can control within your site, to help your site rank better for your target keywords:

If you click on the link below to the source, you’ll see some further explanation of many of the factors shown in the infographic.

[Source: On-Page SEO: Anatomy of a Perfectly Optimized Page (Infographic)]

4) Replace a Broken Link with a Link to Your Site

This tip requires a bit more work, but I thought it was pretty clever.  Basically, you’re finding a site in your niche that links out to other similar sites, and notifying them of a broken link on the page.  Following this, you offer up your relevant site as a good replacement.

Here’s how to do it:

1) Search for a site in your niche that links to many similar sites. You can use search strings such as:

  • “your niche keyword” + “resources page”
  • “your niche keyword” + “recommended sites”
  • “your niche keyword” + “blogroll”
  • “your niche keyword” + “links”

2) Using this free program (Xenu Link Sleuth), check the site’s page to see if there are any broken links.

3) Send an e-mail to the site owner (and follow it up with a tweet if possible) to let them know you found a broken link, and that you have a site that you think could really add value to their readers.

Again, this one requires a bit of effort, and won’t work 100% of the time, but it’s a creative way to obtain a relevant backlink to your site.

[Source: Backlinko - 17 Untapped Backlink Sources]

5) Submitting to the RIGHT Web Directories

The reason I’m including this one on the list is not because web directories are new or super effective, but because they’re one form of link that’s easy to build and can still offer some benefit if it’s done the right way.

Obviously, there are many types of backlinks that are better than these, but if you have a new niche site, you might find it extremely difficult to find a quality site that will accept your guest post, and there won’t be a lot of people flocking to your site to read your content and link to it.  That’s just not a reality for new niche sites.

So, on your quest to increase the ranking of your site, you’ll probably want a handful of easy-to-acquire backlinks that won’t be a complete waste of your time to build.  Sure, you can pay someone on Fiverr to submit to 40,000 web directories, but 99.99% of them will be low quality directories that offer no benefit to you (and could even hurt you).

Here are five worthwhile web directories that you can manually add your site to for free:

Note that because these web directories are higher quality, there is a review process involved with getting your site listed.  In other words, if your site is spammy, low quality, etc., there’s a good chance it won’t be added to the directory.

[Source:  Neil Patel's Advanced Guide to Link Building, Chapter 12 ]

What Are Some of Your SEO Tips?

There you have it – five of the more interesting SEO and link building tips that I’ve read lately. What about you? Do you have any that you think are interesting or creative that you want to share?  Leave a comment below! :)

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24 Responses to “5 Interesting SEO and Link Building Tips I’ve Read Lately”

  1. Hey Eric,

    Even though I have learned most of the stuffs you shared in this article, I appreciate your time and efforts that you put into this great article to summarize all the great resources to present in a well organized way to your readers.

    On the web, it’s not about what you know. It’s about what you share.

    Keep up the great work, buddy!

    Sibo
    Learning from Home recently posted… A quick update on my status

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks Sibo!

    [Reply]

  2. thanks for sharing the post. the drop my link tool is very helpful to me find the niche sites which allow to get back links.

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    No problem, thanks for the comment!

    [Reply]

  3. One of the techniques I’ve seen become more prominent lately is like gating(if that’s the proper term)

    Basically, you hide content behind this gate,and to see the content you need to like or tweet etc.

    The SEO benefit behind it is the fact that you can get many social signals that point to your site.

    It’s a way of getting Google’s attention. The problem is that you have to either have something really juicy for it to work on a niche site or already have a following.

    Just some thoughts.

    Iain
    Iain recently posted… MYF Approved June 28: web copy, unforgivable mistakes and transcribing magic

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    I’ve seen that before, and it does seem effective. I’m just not sure I’d want to do that with the content on my niche site. Although I’m sure I’d get some social signals, I suspect it would also turn some visitors away if the article’s content (title) isn’t “compelling” enough to draw them in.

    [Reply]

    Iain Reply:

    For sure, I am not sure if it’d work well on a niche site, but it’s something to think about.

    I agree, it would most definitely turn some people away.

    It’s more of a strategy for an authority site.
    Iain recently posted… MYF Approved June 28: web copy, unforgivable mistakes and transcribing magic

    [Reply]

  4. Eric, I think the 5 tips you posted are a FANTASTIC addition to Pat Flynn’s basic link strategy. I suppose the adage “where you start is where you finish” and nothing replaces solid keyword research.

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks Lane!

    [Reply]

  5. Nice post, Eric.

    However, I believe wikipedia “resources” are no-follow and not help much in ranking a niche site.

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks Mikk. I actually addressed that point in the article. :) Even though they are no-follow, they can still add some value.

    [Reply]

  6. Eric

    Why is your view on blog commenting is dead?
    John Gough recently posted… Winchester Overlap Apex Shed 8 x 6

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    I actually don’t think blog commenting is dead, but I mentioned that some other people do. Its value is limited, but I still believe there is SOME value if you do it right.

    [Reply]

  7. I think that link building should be a part of things but shouldn’t be the sole way to market your website. It takes quite a variety of different tasks to get your site going.

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    I agree, Mike – link building is definitely just one part of the process.

    [Reply]

  8. Really helpful information. Thanks a ton for reminding and sharing the top Five web directories you can manually add your site to for free.
    FERNANDO BIZ recently posted… Paradigm Shift of the Internet – How Powerful the Internet can be?

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    No problem, Fernando, thanks for the comment.

    [Reply]

  9. I have been using dropmylink for some time now. I have to say it is pretty much amazing. It makes finding whatever you want in the niche you want as easy as pie. Those who are not using this tool is really missing out.

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    I agree, Gary, it’s a really useful tool for finding relevant blogs on which you can comment. (And it’s free to use.)

    [Reply]

  10. Thanks for the Dropmylink information. I’ve been backlinking 5 days per week, and it is a very slow process, and this new method will help greatly. I also appreciated the information without direct benefit to you, so I will be sure pay-it-back when I can. with sign-ups as you link them. Thanks again,
    MychaelP recently posted… Amazon Prime – What is it, and is it worth the cost?

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Thanks Mychael!

    [Reply]

  11. Hey there,

    I think one thing many people miss is optimizing your multimedia. You can change the file name of images, the meta tags, and a few other things.

    While just having an image or a video by itself does help a lot, having the media optimized makes it seem more relevant to your site. In fact, Ive ranked pages with nothing more than a title in h1 tags and bolded, a relevant image, and a link out to something like Wikipedia on the page.

    Hope this helps.

    [Reply]

    Eric G. Reply:

    Great tip, thanks Tim!

    [Reply]

  12. Hi Eric. I just read your article and think it has some great points in it. I’ve been using Drop My Link for quite awhile. I have seen .edu and .gov in dropmylink but have not tried it. Thanks to your information I will trying these now.

    [Reply]

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