- Internet & the Web
How to Get Back Links for a Local Small Business Website
How to Get Backlinks to a Small Business Website
If you are the owner or webmaster of a small business website then you can dramatically improve the position of your pages in search engines such as Google and Bing. This will increase the exposure you site is given on the web and will improve visitor numbers.
Bottom line - More visitors equals more profit.
Search engines are the gateway to the internet, they are easy to use and extremely popular. Ensuring your site performs well for keywords that people are actively searching for isn't just an option - it's essential.
To judge the popularity of a web page, search engines looks at links from other websites. This compliments the other factors that they look at, such as "on-page content".
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Internet marketers know these methods well and actively use them to promote the sites of their customers. There is no reason why "average Joe" with a simple business web site cannot do the same. There are plenty of places to get links from, but first you need to understand how a link works:
This is a link to another Hub I created, it's also about SEO for small businesses.
Do you notice the text within the link? It's the part that reads "SEO for small businesses" . This is called the link anchor text and is another area that search engines look at. They are interested in the words used to describe the page. Some thing like "SEO for small businesses" is very helpful and descriptive but text like "this page" or "page 2" or "read more" is not as useful for search engines.
So let's set some simple rules for building back links, these will prevent you from getting into trouble with search engines, you don't want to be seen as a spammer.
- Do keyword research to find out what people are searching for
- Build links to your pages, not just the home page
- Make use of descriptive link anchor text
- Avoid using the exact same anchor text on too many links - keep varying the text slightly so it looks natural
- Avoid known spam sites and any site that looks really crappy. If it's low quality search engines won't add much weight to the links you get from it
- Avoid schemes such as "link to me and I'll link to you" or three way link schemes
- Avoid link schemes such as "put this code on your website and we will automatically generate links for you"
- Avoid paying for links from well known link sellers, these are most likely monitored by search engines
- Use your common sense, if an offer sounds too good to be true then it probably is
So that covers the basics - Now where can you get some links to your site?
The trusted links
Some websites are just so reliable and trustworthy that search engines add a lot of weight to the links you can get from them, I think the video below explains how a quality web directory differs from a spam directory:
Everyone will have a different opinion on what is a good website and what isn't, my trusted links are below, consider getting some to your site:
- Yahoo directory
- Yahoo Local Search
- Yell or Yellow Pages
- Business.com directory
- Best of The Web
All of the above directories have high standards, they don't usually link out to spam sites so I am confident that Google and Bing look closely at these sites.
If you know of any local web directories such as brownbook.net or niche sites such as lifestyle.co.uk then consider approaching them and asking for a link, some will be free while others might charge a fee.
Don't get too hung up on directories, they are just one type of site to get a link from. Plenty of others.
Local or Regional Government Sites
If you are a small business does your local council or regional government have a website that lists other local businesses? You could also try looking at similar sites for councils in your surrounding area, if your business serves customers in this area then consider getting a link or two from these sites.
If you have started selling a new brand, taken on a new employee or something else along those lines then consider creating a press release. You could try posting them on one of the popular web press release sites below:
(search the web for more similar sites)
There are plenty of article sites on the web where you can create a quality article, include text, photos and of course a link or two to your pages. Avoid copying articles already on the web and don't submit to really low quality cheesy spammy article sites.
Try some of these:
1) ezinearticles.com - one of the most well known sites
2) Here at Hubpages, as a bonus you can earn some money from the adverts too
4) Buzzle website
5) Squidoo website (here is another example of what a completed page looks like, this time about concrete guttering)
I suggest you write 5+ articles on each site, each with varying link anchor text.
Create a blog on your site
If you create a blog on your site you can write new content and link out to other sites, if you build relationships with others on the web then chances are they will link back to your site.
You can also use a blog as way to promote your business, it also makes you more approachable.
Social - Twitter Facebook etc
Search engines like Google do look at links from Facebook, Twitter and other social mediums such as social bookmarking.
Don't just create an account and spam it with tons of back links, instead use it to build connections with others in your niche.
Create a competition and promote it locally (local newspapers etc) to get links
Give to charity in return for a link
Ask friends and family to reference your business online if they have facebook, twitter or other pages etc
Give free content away (such as a story to a newspaper) in return for some exposure
The suggestions I have made above should get you between 50 and 100 links, which, if you target correctly with good link anchor text and fine tuned on page SEO should get you some traction in the search results.
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