Ever since SEO was discovered, the factors that search engines use to determine authentic sites to rank over one another keep changing. Many algorithms and techniques have come and gone, but there is one thing that has not changed from day one- and that is link building. Links are as valuable today as they have ever been.
Google has gone on record and said that link building is one of the three most important factors it uses to rank websites. However, traditional link building tactics are quite different from local link building. Today we’re going to explore 10 powerful local SEO link building strategies that will work for any business vertical.
How is local link building different from traditional link building?
Marketers with a traditional approach towards link building will tell you to target websites with high authority. So much so, you might find yourself being told to stay away from any website with low domain authority; otherwise, you’ll get a Penguin penalty.
However, if you’re doing local SEO, then this advice is flat out wrong. Building local relevance is only possible when you add links to low authority local websites. Any website, even if it is of low authority carries more weight in proving local relevance as compared to a high authority website. What’s more, most enterprise sites are unaware of this golden rule and only employ traditional link building tactics. As a result, being an SMB, you can dominate the search engine results page by adding a few small local websites.
How to earn and acquire a local link?
Local link building takes the opposite approach as traditional link builders. A link from a local website can increase your content’s local relevance making it appear much higher in search engine rankings. In fact, the local pack algorithm is associated with the organic algorithm. This makes local link building one of the best tactics to increase your search engine rankings organically. While most marketers focus on citations, reviews or content, you can get double the benefit with links pointing to your local landing page.
Local links help increase traffic and brand visibility because that’s where humans click! A rock-solid local content strategy can help you get local links without having to beg other websites to do it for you.
Some powerful strategies for local link building
Here, we are going to lay out 10 powerful local link building tactics mentioning why, when and how you should execute each technique to grow your business locally:
1. Custom searches
The first tip to attract more local opportunities through Google is to use custom searches. It’s easy. Just type “location +” in the search bar. For example, if you are looking for local blogs then put “blogs” after the plus sign. By searching this way, you will get a list of potential blogs in your area that you can outreach for a guest post opportunity or to create collaborated content.
2. Participate in local awards
Another great way to gain local traction towards your website is to participate in local awards. Many organizations and media companies arrange different kinds of awards for multiple niches. All you have to do is keep yourself updated about upcoming awards and sign up for them through the event organizer’s website.
Even if you don’t win, there are high chances that your website will appear on a high-visibility list such as “Top 10 London Salons” or “10 Best restaurants in Chicago”.
3. Alumni or Military discount
Get in touch with local universities and offer a good discount to their alumni members. Just add a page on your site explaining the discount. This will enable you to reach out to different alumni groups to get featured on their websites. Military discounts also work well but might require a bit more effort and outreach than the former.
4. Organize local meet-ups
Local meet-ups are one of the best ways to get local exposure. Simply search for active groups in your area that hold regular meet-ups relevant to the business or service you are providing. For instance, if a group of beauty bloggers is looking for a place to meet, ask them to gather at your restaurant. This way you can get an easy local link and get featured on each one of the blogs of the attendees.
If you can’t find anyone looking for a nice place to meet up, then try to hunt for groups that are seeking sponsors. For as low as $50 or $100 a month, you can sponsor refreshments at one of the meet-ups which is another easy way to get local links!
5. Create a local resource page
Another excellent way to leverage local link building is to create a local resource page which contains information about something happening in your area. For example, if you love smoked meats, compile a list of the best barbeque joints in your area. Or if you love to spend time outdoors with kids and family, publish a list of the best outdoor places in town for children and so on. Remember, other sites will link all sorts of useful information.
6. Take advantage of existing relationships
If you’ve been in the business for quite some time, then take advantage of the relationships you have built with the local community. Look for friends and business owners that can support you. Since you are already on good terms with the owners, it is easy to get those links.
7. Look for local influencers
An interview with a local influencer or celebrity can get some great local links. Think about the people you already know. If you don’t know anyone directly, then ask friends to set up an interview with the person. All you need is a little networking, and you’ll be sure to get rewarded with some juicy local links.
8. Hit your local directories
While you may already be getting in touch with local directories for citations, you can also use them as a source for local links. Almost every city has its local directory, so don’t forget to list your business in it.
9. Analyze your competitors’ local link building strategy
Another way to find sponsorship opportunities, events, and more local news is to check the backlinks of your competitors’ businesses. Sometimes, the link profile of a competitor can be a goldmine of opportunities for you!
10. Publish an eBook
Ebooks are an excellent way to establish yourself as an authority in your industry. Most companies don’t realize that they already have enough content to utilize this opportunity. It’s just a matter of organizing the information so that it becomes a useful resource to the readers. Create a newsletter or mailing list and start sending it out!
Local link building strategies are a great way to increase your rankings on search engines and escalate traffic to your website. With Google becoming more and more thorough, it is important to acquire relevant backlinks. Give these local link building strategies a shot, and you will notice that there is a surge in organic traffic and higher sales!
Over to you,
Do you have any fool-proof local link building strategies that are sure to work for you in 2019? If yes, comment below, and we’d love to know more about it.