Monday, June 4th, 2012
Today I want to talk a little bit about link building and a nice little strategy you can employ to gain some great authoritative back links from some established sites within your niche.
This post was inspired by a video I saw recently by Wil Reynolds (Founder of SEER Interactive and Keynote speaker at Affiliate Summit) on how you can leverage dead links you come across within your niche and use them to your advantage.
How? By rebuilding a long forgotten or broken resource.
Let me explain….
Most website owners strategy to inbound link building is to simply post links to articles on Twitter and Facebook (in the hope someone takes a keen interest in what they have to say and shares or links to them) or to just email a site owner directly and ask for a back link.
And that approach is fine. For the whole. We all do it and it can work to a certain degree.
But what that approach doesn’t do is add much value for the people we are trying to gain a link from.
As I have touched on in an earlier post (10 tips to increase your websites traffic) it is really worthwhile trying to build relationships within your immediate network. If you engage people (by helping them or re-tweeting and sharing their great content) they will be far more likely to do the same for you.
And one of the great ways of doing this is by reaching out and helping website owners solve a very common issue.
You see each and every day thousands upon thousands of cool, fresh new articles are published, shared and linked to online.
Unfortunately though the novelty can wear off and often over time some sites can either disappear or be left to slowly decay until they eventually expire. Meaning that great resource that somebody once linked to no longer exists.
This can be a real opportunity for savvy link builders and content creators out there.
You see by recreating this content and then contacting webmasters who linked to the original not only are you building a relationship by helping them out, you are also potentially gaining great one way back links from established sites.
Think about that?
I know if I were approached and told “Hey – that cool article or resource you linked to no longer exists – but I have recreated it here. feel free to update your link to point to my site if you wish” I would be stoked.
Not only might I not have been aware that one of my links was dead (not great for SEO or user experience) but I was also offered a quick, easy solution. By adding value that person has almost made it silly for me not to link to them.
And why stop at just recreating dead, lost content? Updating existing content can also be a real winner too.
And in particular top lists.
Imagine a site that linked to an article about the Top 10 Premium WordPress Themes of 2011. It makes perfect sense that they may be interested in linking to an updated list?
The Top Premium WordPress Themes of 2012 anyone?
The only limit is your creativity and imagination. This is a great way of earning fantastic one way back links.
So how do we do it?
There are loads of plugins for Chrome and Firefox to easily find broken links on any webpage. Personally I use LinkChecker.
Then it’s simply a case of browsing established websites within your niche (which let’s face it you would probably be doing anyway).
As you browse just quickly use the link checker to check all the links on that page (Alternatively there are loads of sites such as brokenlinkcheck.com that will scan entire sites for broken links). It may take a while but when you find a broken link you are on your way.
Copy the link and then head to Open Site Explorer and do a search on it.
(Alternatively you can use Google and search for link:url [where url is the link you just copied])
This will show you a list of all the sites that also link to this broken page. Now all we have to do is recreate this content ourselves before contacting each of those sites with the updated url and ask them if they would be interested in updating their links.
So how do you go about recreating content that no longer exists?
Well for things like Top Lists you could simply use your own experience and expertise to build your own list.
For something more specific however you could use the Wayback Machine.
The Wayback Machine (or internet archive) is exactly that; An archive of webpages that are saved for prosperity. Including (very probably) the content of the dead link we are trying to revive.
Simply paste the URL of the dead page into the Wayback Machine and see what comes back. You can then take the content, modify it if needed, give credit to the original author / site etc. and then republish it before contacting the sites that linked to the original.
This is an awesome way of potentially earning great quality, one way back links and also establishing relationships within your chosen niche.
Sometimes link building is about thinking outside the box and seizing upon opportunities. I would be interested in hearing your thoughts, ideas and personal experiences in the comments below.
Happy link building guys : )