Linking building can be quite challenging but for small local businesses, there are actually various ways you can attain links naturally. If you are a local business struggling to create a good link profile, keep on reading to find out what methods you can implement to drive more traffic to your website and boost search rankings.
Getting backlinks effectively – Use Your Current connections
Customer service satisfaction should be your ultimate goal. If you treat your customers well, they will recommend your service to others. Each recommendation is a link back to your website organically.
To make sure your customers feel special, you need to make your messages relative to the specific person and treat them as an individual rather than a customer. Sending the same message to a group of consumers will only signify that you do not have the time to really listen. Go above and beyond in the service that you offer.
By customizing your user interactions, you can improve the relevancy and authenticity of your brand. This will in turn improve your brand awareness. Although it may be time-consuming, it’s well worth the effort as it will be the most feasible method for you to get backlinks.
Get Customers Involved in a Case Study and Link to each other
Another great way to get backlinks is to get your customers to participate in a case study. Why? Your customers have experience interacting with your website and that experience can be exposed to other potential customers.
Let us say your customers had a positive experience using your service. Why keep that information to yourself when you can showcase their feedback? It is a known fact that consumers trust each other more than they trust your brand. To be precise, 90% of consumers read online customers reviews while researching a business and it is what impacts their purchase decision.
By displaying your customers’ experiences, you can improve your trustworthiness and encourage your prospects to convert. In fact, 89% of marketers all state that customer reviews and case studies are the most compelling content forms to influence prospects.
What is a case study and how can I create it?
A case study is a written form of content that showcases your value to a customer. To create a case study, the information needs to be data driven.
We enlist the things you can do to create great case studies:
Create a list of your most satisfied customers and customers that benefit most from your service.
Look through your database of customers and find the ones that were most content with your service and most recent. The best approach is to consult with your account managers and customer service department to identify which customers praised your company. Look through your data and find the ones that had great success stories. The next step is to find which ones left feedback on social media or review site and create a list of companies or consumers that you can get in touch with.
Show how your customers can benefit from the case study.
Ok, so you have got in touch with your positive customers. But naturally, they will want to know what is in it for them if they take part in your case study. It’s important to emphasize the advantages when presenting your study. Remember that at the end of the day, this case study will open a new door to potential customers. Therefore, offering to give them a small discount on future purchases or extension of licenses will be worth giving.
Make it clear what is needed from them.
This is a very important step. You have got your customer’s attention, now it is time to get the information you want from them. Examine the story you want to tell. For example, the customer will tell you the problem they experienced and what their solution was. In this case, obviously, their solution is your brand.
Now next step is crucial, the customer needs to tell you what the outcome was and why your company was valuable to them. The last step will showcase why they enjoyed working with you and why your brand should be recommended to others. Note, that it is vital that you get their final approval before publishing.
High-quality content – What it is and How to Produce it
Creating great content on your blog or website is your ticket to high traffic and rankings. Writing original content will put you at the forefront because Google rewards high-quality content sites that are unique. At the end of the day, this is how you want to get noticed. Search engines give you the highest traffic. So let us see how to create high-quality content:
1. Write original content
Never copy other’s content as Google will penalize you for it. But this is not enough, your content needs to be original. Rehashing the same concepts or posts repeatedly will not be original. If your content is repeatable, it will not be used in backlinks and isn’t that the reason you are writing content in the first place?
It’s essential that you don’t take any shortcuts. Such shortcuts involve using bots to scrape content and summarize them into the nonsense that only search engines will read or hiring cheap content writers that are not qualified or reposting articles. The golden rule is to not write about anything if you have nothing original to say!
2. Create compelling headlines
A compelling headline is one that catches the readers eye and hooks them to keep reading. In fact, readers follow the 80-20 rule, such that only 20% will actually read all your content, the rest will just simply read the headlines.
For this reason, you should focus on creating a headline that makes it clear what you will write about but also entices the reader. For instance, let’s say the reader wants to learn about the study of Epidemiology but does not know where to begin. This reader will more likely click on a headline such as “The study of Epidemiology: A beginner’s guide”.
3. Inspire users with your material
The best content is one that satisfies the reader and allows them to use that information. The way you write your content should give advice, opinions, and tips. It should never tell users what they should do but rather offer assurance that it is up to them to decide how best to apply the material.
If you are knowledgeable about a topic and express yourself well in the content, then it is already enough to inspire your readers with some ideas.
4. Run contests on social media
Social media is a hotspot for building links. A great way to do this is by running contests on your social media page. By asking people to share and follow you on social media, you are essentially creating multiple backlinks and followers. All this is great exposure to your brand with very little effort involved.
Local citations and the role they play in Link Building.
What is a local citation?
As a local business, it is crucial that you create an online local citation. A local citation is simply an online mention of the name, address and phone number of your local business. These citations can appear on local business directories, website, apps or on social media.
Citations can help online users explore local businesses and even impact search engine and Google Maps rankings. Citations can be easily managed by businesses to make sure all data is accurate and synched.
What are the different types of local citations?
- Local Business Data Platforms – Local businesses and marketers can create citations on local business data platforms. These include Google My Business, Infogroup and Yelp, amongst others.
- Geo/Industry-Specific Platforms – Local businesses can also choose to be cited in websites that are specific to their industry and geographical location. Examples include chamber of commerce or professional associations.
- Wide Web – Citations can also be created from publications, blogs, news sites, apps, maps and much more. These can be either earned or intentionally cited for your business.
How to monitor your citations
It may seem overwhelming to go through 100s of your location citations. Strictly speaking, you only need to go through the major citations and this can be done manually. Moz offers a shortlist of the major citations used.
On the other hand, if you want to simplify things, you can use Moz to automate this process for you. It will go through the major data aggregators that influence the web results most and make sure your data is accurate.
Finding Network Opportunities to building Backlinks
Sponsor your community’s organizations and events.
Every town and city has a community. Whether it’s sports teams, theatre productions, nature trusts and other community events. All these communities rely on donations from people and businesses to give service.
Small businesses in their locality should really think about joining forces and sponsoring one of these organizations. By offering sponsorships for local groups and events, you are showing support for your local’s community. Apart from doing this for a great cause, you are also exposing your name and brand to your local community.
Connect with Local & Niche Bloggers – the benefits this brings.
Blogs can create many networking possibilities. Your local business has a niche and niche bloggers are all over the internet. The Niche bloggers that are local are the ones you need to look out for. Niche bloggers make sure to post consistent and frequent blogs. That is why finding the ones that stand out isn’t hard to do.
By understanding what bloggers in your niche are writing about can help you stay ahead of the game. Building a good relationship with these bloggers can result in several advantages. Mainly, you can get featured in one of their blogs or have your content shared. Moreover, you can be invited to the local industry events that can help you get exposed. You could even consider hiring them to write content for your company.
Use your Competiton to Learn and Model what works.
The best way to creating the best backlink profile is to look at your local competitors within your niche. As a local small business, you want to be center stage and what better way to do this than learn and model what already works?
To do this you need to look thoroughly at your competitor’s websites. See what they use as a landing page, what services are highlighted and analyze your experience. Another important thing is to follow them on social media to get an understanding of what they post and how frequently they post. By looking at the posts that get the most engagement can help you understand what you need to focus on.
Next, try to search them in search engines and analyze which posts appear the most. You can take it a step further by checking out who is linking them and how frequently. One way of doing this is by using Ahrefs. Here is a recent post from us that gives a thorough guide on how to do this.
Additionally. try going through their reviews and take note of what the users outline as positive feedback. Moreover, you could also check out what offers they are giving and examine their ads. Knowing what they advertise and where they advertise could be key to attracting new leads.
The main key is to act as an interested customer. A great way of doing this is by joining their email newsletters and feeds. This will give you a close-up look at what they are trying to market.
Being proactive is crucial when you have a small local business – it is the key to creating a powerful online presence. To remain active, you need to build unique relationships with your consumers, create case studies, sponsor communities within your locality and study your competition. Also, make sure to produce high-quality content that is unique to your brand. Lastly, but probably most importantly, make sure you are easily found – create local citations of your business!
All these actions have the added benefit of building a strong link strategy for your small business organically. This in turn will drive high traffic to your website from the right audience.