Create Content that is Better than the Best (Skyscraper Technique)
The so-called “skyscraper technique” is about creating content on your site that will blow even the best of your competitors out of the water. This task in itself is as demanding as it sounds, but there is more: that accounts only for a half of the job.
Let us break down the process and list the necessary steps.
- Choose the keywords you want to rank for. If the skyscraper technique is your weapon in this fight, then your keywords of choice are the battleground.
- Put those keywords in Google’s search bar and see who is ranking the highest for them. Now you have found your strongest competitors.
- Take a good look at the content on their websites and think about how you can make something even better. Is there anything that need improvement? How about accentuating on the strong bits?
- Proceed to create superior content on your own site.
- Find sites that link to your competitors. Plenty of SEO tools have that function: for example, Competitor Backlink Spy by SEMrush, MOZ. Also, consider looking for sites that are not linking to your competitors yet, but are likely to do so.
- Reach out to those sites’ owners via email. This step is best conveyed via an example.
“Hello John, I was browsing your site and found your article about SEO strategies. Amazing read, enjoyed it greatly! I could not help but notice you linked to that classic article about Google’s ranking factors. I also love that resource. In fact, it inspired me to create a more thorough and up-todate version. Here’s a link in case you want to check it out. It might be worth a mention in your article. Either way, keep up the awesome work. Thanks, Dave”
Build Links from Broken Links
If a resource from the same niche as you goes out of business or just moves to a different URL, swift action can earn you a few links. Only if your own site is a worthy replacement.
If you happen to find a site with one or more broken links, and if it makes sense for its owner to link to your content instead (in other words, if it is relevant content), then you should definitely try to reach out to that person in an email. Very rarely will they just leave the broken link be. More likely, they will put the link you have provided as a token of gratitude.
Buy from a Company, Write a Testimonial
You can acquire an easy backlink by leaving a customer testimonial on a company’s site. See, all companies with products or services to sell love showing off their customer testimonials. It is how they gain trust of their target audience and encourage them to use their brand: there is no advertisement more honest than feedback from your clients. For that reason, some companies like to give extra credibility to testimonials by adding links to their customers’ sites.
The obvious catch is, not all companies bother enough to do that. In addition, the other catch is, you must buy their product so you could review it.
Reclaim the Link That Is Rightfully Yours
This is nothing difficult. Finding mentions of your brand online is simple enough, checking if they have; a link attached to them takes only a single extra step. Once you have found something that would look even better with a link to your site, its email time! There is a decent chance of succeeding; after all, you are probably already liked well enough if somebody brings you up in a good light.
This method is good to use when there is no link and when there is a broken link.
Make a Fantastic Infographic and Share It
I will not tell you how to design the best infographic, since everyone has a different artistic approach. Let us just skip to the part where you already have your own infographic and are ready to share it with the world. Once you have that covered, the next thing you should do is make an HTML code snippet for embedding the infographic on a web page – and making the image link to your site. From there, you have two courses of action by which you can proceed to earn your backlinks:
- Offer the infographic to bloggers in your niche (especially to any you may have used as a source).
- Submit it to infographic sharing websites. You will most likely have to write an original introduction text for each of them, or even pay them to host the infographic
Write Guest Posts for Other Sites’ Blogs
Guest blogging is a very popular method of creating links. It also is not going out of trend anytime soon. Maybe it will when there is no more demand for fresh content, but that is a huge maybe.
The most important thing to remember is that links from low authority sites will do your own site no good; you want to give preference to the ones with higher authority. In addition, context and relevance of links matter as usual.
Interview a Thought Leader or Are Interviewed
Understandably, being involved in an interview requires you to have a certain level of expertise in your field. This could go two ways.
- You are the interviewee. If you are already an authority in your niche, it makes things easier. If you are not, but you still consider yourself capable enough, you will have to look for sites that interview people from your niche and volunteer for participation.
- You are the interviewer. People love hearing opinions of thought leaders. Interview one and ask them to link to the interview’s page on your site (or the reverse, putting the interview on their site and linking to yours). It will be enough to acquire a backlink and lots of incoming traffic, now imagine what will happen if you interview several. Do you have a list of big names you want to talk to?
Trade Your Product for Blogger Reviews
Plenty of bloggers make a living by writing reviews on various products and services. It is safe to call it a symbiotic relationship between them and the brands reviewed by them. If you sell your own product and you are not overly stingy, it is a good idea to trade what you produce for a review with a link.
However, there is a catch: asking for reviews and links in return for things is a violation of Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. That is why you will have to word your email very carefully. You want to offer the blogger your product (or service, or subscription) free and let them figure out the rest. No direct statements.
Do Favours and Jobs, Ask for Links in Return
Freelance work can also earn backlinks in addition to money. Actually, money does not even have to be a part of the equation. Then it would not be called ‘freelance work’; it is just doing a favor instead, which serves the purpose of creating links just as well.
All you need to do is put whatever skills you have to good use when someone needs your assistance. Once the job is done and your client is happy, it is fair to ask for credit. Even something as simple as “banner designed by Joe from joethedesigner.com” is a victory. Build links while building your relationships
Come to HARO and Answer a Reporter’s Questions
When you are published in a journalist’s article, it’s a true sign that you are no longer a novice in your niche. It will not make you an expert overnight, but it will bring you a step closer to becoming one. Unless you already are. In which case you still should not refuse an opportunity to be published. Can you really turn down a link to your site in an article?
HARO (which stands for Help a Reporter Out) is a website for journalists who are looking for sources and experts who want their expertise published. By signing up as a source and replying to a journalist’s request, you can obtain a new backlink and some good publicity for your name. Only if your email answers all questions in the request and is professionally written. In addition, do not forget to put your name, author bio and a link to your site in the end.
Launch a Scholarship Campaign
You can help a university and its students (well, one of the students) by creating a scholarship. Doing so will result in an inbound link on a .edu domain. How many webmasters can brag about having one? You could be the first among your friends.
Of course, before contacting a university about your scholarship campaign, you have to create one first, which is a Herculean task. Among the nuances you’d need to consider for such a campaign are:
- The task for the contest·
- Criteria for participation·
- Conditions for determining the winner·
- The reward and sending it to the winner·
- Time for evaluating students’ submissions·
This is all in addition to making a campaign page on your website. It is one of the more effort-consuming link building strategies, but there is a reason backlinks from .edu resources are worth more than others are.
Promote Your Site by Holding a Contest
A good way to breathe new life into your site is to hold a contest. Your brand gets a boost to publicity, and your target audience is entertained with hectic competing. Whoever wins, nobody loses! That is assuming you know your audience’s needs and can plan a smart marketing campaign, of course.
Fortunately, not all contests require a monetary prize. There are just as many innocent friendly contests on the Internet where the reward is little more than a pretty banner and bragging rights, the latter often being worth more. It is true, however, that you can raise the stakes and add more heat to the competition by offering a physical reward. It depends on the environment.
Put Viral Content on Your Site
Among the types of content that receive many links, so-called viral content stands out the most. It is easy enough to see why: for the majority of people, the Internet is primarily a source of entertainment, and sharing information online is much simpler and faster than it is in the real world. Take advantage of this fact by creating your own viral content!
Here are but a few examples of what you can make (all of which needs to have a link to your website):
- Pictures of cute animals
- Humorous content•
- Shocking content
- Breaking news
- Curious facts
Speak at Events and Meetups
When you speak before a crowd during a big event, well that is how you know you are recognized as a specialist. If you do not suffer from stage fright, it will feel so good that you will barely register all the new links that come pointing to your site afterwards.
In any case, whenever there is an event or a meetup, its par for the course to mention the speakers on the host’s website. This is one of the easiest ways of link building… even if it is preceded by an unclear amount of hard work. For extra links and traffic, you can tell any bloggers you know about the event and ask them to attend if possible. Just do not embarrass yourself in front of them while giving them the material to write about.
Offer Your Content for a Link Round-Up
There are blogs that gather up links to recently published posts and articles and put them in dedicated posts on a weekly or monthly basis. Sometimes even daily, if they have enough content to do so. It does not have to be their own content; some blogs include links to articles from other sites if they are relevant to other links in the group. This is called a link round up, and the opportunity it presents should be obvious.
Although it is up to the blogger to decide whether they link to your content, the process itself is fairly simple. All you need to do is have an interesting, freshly made article on your site and find a site in your niche that does link round-ups. Then you just email the blogger about your article and their next round up. Alternatively, a different option: you make a link round-up yourself and ask the people involved to link to it on their own site.
Make News, not War
Arguably, this is the hardest possible link building method because of how little control you have over it. Few people know in advance, when or how they’ll become the talk of the town, and whether they’ll be shown in a good light. When you suddenly become popular, even if temporarily, there is little you can do other than watch things unfold around you. Nevertheless, it is the truth that people like to gossip and discuss interesting topics in general. And when they do it online, links fly around like wild birds in the spring. Who knows, all those birds could be yours someday!
And finally, the number 17…
Of course, don’t forget that your competitors are a gold-mine of backlinks, too. The sources they use can be yours for the taking if you turn to Ahref Competitor Backlink Use it to research how well your website is doing compared to your competitors. There you will find the number of total backlinks, the diversity of linking domains and nofollow links that pass no link juice to the linked pages.