If you’re looking for a Bible on good website building practices, make sure every guide you look at has a huge section on search engine optimization (SEO). It is an unskippable part of building a website and white hat link building is at the heart of those practices.
Now, what exactly is white hat link building and why is it so popular? It basically consists of performing an outreach campaign to webmasters of relevant, quality websites and buying backlinks through guest publications or link placements – safe and effective.
What Is It?
Anyone will tell you that link building is key to SEO. But white-hat link building is more than that. It is a set of practices that ensure that your page ranking is high by keeping search engines happy. That’s not optional.
To make things easy, search engines like Google and Bing have laid out a few instructions. And if you violate them, there will be penalties that promise to push your website rankings back into the Dark Ages. So, you want to learn as much as you can about them as soon and as thoroughly as you can.
Why Do You Need It?
The opposite of white-hat techniques is black-hat techniques. These are shortcuts that might (and that’s a big might) yield short-term results and are tempting to use but, as mentioned before, you can land in quite the soup if you dare to enrage the search engines.
There are many a safeguard against such practices. Updates to search engine algorithms to keep you in check is just one of them. You can’t try to spam (or scam) your customers and you can’t fill your website with low-quality backlinks. That does not ensure quality to the customer. So, search engines don’t like such websites.
But since they put in the work even to disqualify you, if you employ cheap tricks, search engines won’t be kind to you. There are quite a few examples of what happens when things go wrong.
White hat strategies, on the other hand, provide good content and also give your business results. You should be motivated to follow them if you’re in it for the long haul.
Top Four Strategies
Now, if you’re not familiar with the strategies, here’s a crash course of the top four strategies.
This is a strategy to find quality third-party websites and get you linkbacks from there. It could be by using press releases or infographics or an article about your business.
This is one of the easiest and safest practices to build links and improve your SEO ranking. You will need to give information that is unique to your website. It could be statistics or interesting data points that are relevant to your industry or directly affect your customers. Be smart with the information. Use the right keywords while creating valuable content.
You could also start by asking partners and affiliates to spread the word. Although, don’t engage in “I scratch your back, you scratch mine” policies because search engines tend to frown upon such quid pro quos. Affiliate links, however, are a different thing. You can partner with someone who also promises quality content and both websites can make the best of the situation.
Guest Blog Entries
Another efficient white-hat practice, this is a strategy where guests are allowed to contribute stories in the form of blogs. Once again, you must optimize the content to best advertise yourself while cleverly using targeted keywords.
They are a great way to network within the industry and also build your SEO. You will have to do a few of these to make sure you are building contacts without compromising your audiences’ interests.
This is kind of a good samaritan move but with benefits. You find resources that might further add value to your customer’s user experience. You offer them links to pages that are useful to your visitor. You will end up promoting someone else’s resources but not in an advertorial fashion. Plus, it helps with community building.
You don’t have to link back inside your content. Typically, you see these are additional resources at the bottom of web pages.
This is a hardcore research move. Find business directories that can list your product or service. Basically, you will be looking for the digital and more contemporary version of Yellow Pages. Google My Business is a good idea.
Find those that are relevant to your industry and get on them. This can elevate your website and business’ profile with respect to search engine rankings.
No matter the approach, you must always remember that whether you’re a business or a content creator, never lose sight of the value of a good user experience. Instead of being clickbait-y, focus on understanding your customers’ needs and giving them what they are looking for. That’s the first step in ensuring that they return.