If there’s one thing I’ve learned from looking at our analytics over the years since we launched this blog, it’s that People. Love. Link building . Articles about link building consistently drive the most traffic over time. Why? It’s not the only thing that matters for SEO – you also need great title tags, strong information architecture, etc., etc. Those posts do pretty well too, but there’s not as much to say about them.
My theory is that link building is more like a game, and I bet a lot of SEOs grew up as gamers. SEO link building isn’t just a matter of learning a few basic best practices and applying them. There will always be new ways to score links, and getting a great link is a triumph for an SEO. It’s like a new top score on Donkey Kong.
Are you the King of Kong?
Since we’ve published so many popular link building posts here, I decided to round them up for easy reference.
Our Top 10 Most Popular SEO Link Building Posts
- How to Create Amazing Backlinks  – Why build mediocre links when you can build amazing ones?! This post outlines a five-step process for discovering what people are linking to, who’s linking to it, why they’re linking to it, and how you can get in on the action.
- How We Got a Link from The New York Times  – A case study on a successful example of link bait. Link bait’s not a dirty word around here!
- How to Get Do Follow Links from Wikipedia Articles in Four Simple Steps  – Yes, yes, we know that Wikipedia links are no-follow. This post is actually about “a means for accumulating passive, recurring, and authoritative links to content by leveraging the popularity and search prominence of Wikipedia.”
- Want More Link Juice? Here’s an Easy Way to Get It  – This post explains how to find pools of link equity in your site and “drain” them to other pages.
- What are the Top Article Submission Websites for Link Building?  – In addition to his four favorite article submission sites, Ken Lyons shares some tips for getting your articles accepted and syndicated.
- Advanced Link Building: Clone Your Most Successful Link Profiles  – You know it’s worthwhile to analyze links on competitor sites, but did you know you should also be examining your own link profiles for link opportunities? This post explains how to replicate the success of your strongest ranking page on your weaker ranking pages.
- Five Experts on SEO Link Building  – Garrett French, Ben Wills, Wiep Knol, Debra Mastaler and Julie Joyce answered eight questions on link building tools and strategies. Expertastic!
- Link Building Magic: How to Turn Citations into Links  – Take a day off from trying to get a link from the NYT every now and then and tackle some low-hanging fruit, like turning mentions of your brand or products into valuable links.
- Five Myths About Link Building  – Larry tries to dispel some persistent link building myths – for example, that reciprocal links are always bad.
- Link Building 101: 5 Simple Ways to Build Links that Have Authority AND Great Anchor Text  – A lot of the above posts are pretty advanced. This one’s for you link building beginners!
Link Building Wild Cards
Here are a few more that didn’t make the top 10, but that I think you’ll like anyway:
- Link Popularity Case Study: The Domino Effect of Inbound Links  – I wrote this post on the tendency for one or two really big links to produce a string of additional links back to your content.
- Real Life Link Building: Three Real Relationships You Can Turn Into Virtual Votes  – It’s just as important – heck, more important – to build relationships as your grow your website and business. The bonus part is, relationship often result in links!
- 10 Super-Quick Link Building Tips for Bloggers and Site Owners  – This is the one to read if you’ve only got two minutes to spare.
- How to Find and Fix Broken Links on Your Website  – Not a link building post exactly, but an important step for site maintenance.
- SEO Lab: Testing Anchor Text Links  – This was a test to see if Google only counts the first instance of anchor text it encounters on a page to the same URL, and if Google counts "nofollow" anchor text. (Fair warning: The results may not longer be valid as this post is more than a year old.)
A Few Link Building Guest Posts
And finally here are some of our best link building articles from guest authors:
- Using Educational Linkbait to Get Valuable .edu Links  – I love this guest post by Rebecca Haden on a smart strategy for getting high-value links from stingy .edu domains.
- 3 Ways to Scale Linkbuilding with Google Docs  – The dreaded words from any manager: “That’s great, but does it scale?” Here are some tips on scaling your link building efforts from Distilled’s John Doherty.
- Visualizing Link Flow Within a Site  – A.D. Srikanth shares this tip for using Xenu and Graphiz to help you see how your link architecture is working.
- Giving Your Links a Boost with Tiered Link Building  – Kieran Flanagan contributed this article on building secondary “booster links” to your higher-quality inbound links.
- The Problem with Footer Links in SEO  – This guest post by Lior Levin points out some potential pitfalls with getting links in a site’s footer as opposed to the body of the page.
Now go forth and build some links!