We now know that Google takes freshness into consideration when ranking a website in search.
That’s why it’s imperative to keep your site or blog fresh with new and timely updates. Along with that, linking from relevant sites plays a crucial role in ensuring your site gets the ranking it deserves in search.
Google smiles on websites that earn links from other sites that cover similar areas of information and services. So in your efforts to gather links and increase your search ranking, be sure to look for sites that have a high domain authority and that operate within your industry to ensure relevance.
The following are some tips for finding relevant sites for your link-building campaigns.
Best of the best lists One of the most effective ways to figure out which sites to link from and make sure they are closely related to yours is to find a list that showcases the best of the best in your particular industy. This enables you to target specific and relevant sites without having to worry about falling into a practice that Google might slap you for.
To find the best of the best in the SEO industry, for example, you can do a simple Google search on the topic. Once you have some candidates, you can contact the owners of each of the featured sites and state your desire to link from them.
It’s a good idea to check first and see which other sites already link to the ones you’re considering. You don’t want to risk associating your site with one that’s riddled with spammy links.
LinkedIn LinkedIn is home to thousands of professionals. More important for our purposes, it has lots of online marketers who are themselves looking for link-building opportunities.
The great thing about LinkedIn is that it’s very easy to find online marketers who work in the same industry as yours. You can either scour LinkedIn Groups or LinkedIn Answers to find the kind of people you want to work with.
You can also take advantage of LinkedIn’s advanced search to find related people and companies. By using LinkedIn’s filters, you can easily zero in on individuals and companies that are apt to be the most use to you. From there, you can learn more about their sites.
Twitter And then there’s Twitter, which is also home to thousands of online marketers looking for potentially fruitful interactions with fellow Internet sellers and publicists. You can either use Google to search Twitter, or try Twitter’s native search engine.
To search using Google, simply key in “site:twitter.com (keywords).” As a keyword example, you might use “online marketer” to find Twitter posts and people with the terms “online marketer” on their profiles.
With Twitter’s own search engine, simply type the keywords of the industry you are specifically targeting. An option is to use Twitter apps such as TweetDeck or HootSuite to search Twitter.
Blog directories One of the easiest ways to find a site related to your own is to search blog networks or blog directories. Blog directories can direct you to millions of blogs, so you won’t have a shortage of sites to go around.
What’s great about scouring the blog directories is that finding blogs related to your own is easy: blogs are organized into categories on these sites. Popular blog directories include BlogCatalog.com and BlogaRama.com.
You can also search Technorati, IceRocket, WordPress.org, Tumblr, and Blogger.com for popular blogs that are related to your niche.
Conclusion Quality and relevance are two of the most important factors to watch for when you’re building links. The odds are, these two will remain the primary focus if you intend to future-proof your site, so to speak.
Timothy Carter is the CRO for AudienceBloom. Since 1997 he's been helping businesses maximize their sales revenue from websites via content marketing, SEO and Internet Marketing strategies. Over the years he's written for publications like Marketing Land, Search Engine Journal, MarketingProfs and other highly respected online publications.