Link building was relatively easy a decade ago. You could create a network of private blogs and use them for backlink generation. You could also stuff a blog post with keywords and dominate your niche.
Then everything changed in 2014. Google banned Private Blog Networks (PBNs). And in the next few years, the search engine put an end to all forms of black hat SEO. As an alternative, Google advocated for white hat link building.
What is White Hat Link Building?
White hat link building is a method of sourcing backlinks for your websites in accordance with the rules and recommendations of search engines like Google.
It is the opposite of black hat link building, which involves prohibited techniques like buying links. Black hat SEO methods can get your website penalized by Google, which could result in reduced organic traffic and sales.
Against that backdrop, we’ve listed 9 actionable white hat link building techniques you should use to grow your website. Let’s get started:
Post Awesome Content on your Website
When you think about it, many successful websites share one thing in common: they post awesome content. They publish detailed, informative content people want to read.
Google loves great content. In fact, the search engine ranks content as one of its three most important factors for ranking a page or website. If you have insightful posts that provide answers to what people are searching for online, Google will rank your site.
Now, your content needs to meet a few requirements to attract backlinks. First, it ought to target the right keywords. Publish content that targets a specific high-volume keyword in your niche.
Importantly, create high-quality content. Research and create truly insightful information. Break your posts into short paragraphs. Use images and videos. Also, structure it properly using titles and subtitles.
Then promote your content on social media by asking your network to share it.
Guest blogging is an outreach technique that lets you get backlinks by providing content for other websites. It is a way to provide value to a website owner before you can ask them for a link.
Many websites accept guest blogging because of the free content that comes with it. However, don’t guest post on just about any website. Target authoritative websites in your niche for white hat link building.
Google values links from authoritative websites more than those from no-name websites. Use a tool like Ahrefs or Semrush to discover the most authoritative websites in your niche.
Next, find out if these websites accept guest blogging. Consider sending a pitch to each website. Include your guest posting ideas. Then create good content for these websites in exchange for backlinks.
Create a Free tool
Creating a free tool for your website can be expensive and time-consuming. But it can work wonders in helping you build links for your website. Everyone loves free stuff, especially free things that have value.
Think of creating a free antivirus program for your online security website. Or, provide a free budgeting tool custom-designed for casino players. Then reach out to website owners to let them aware of your free tool.
If your tool works as advertised, it can help you in white hat link building. These links help increase provide visibility of your website through the traffic provided. They also help your website rank higher, which can lead to more sales and revenues.
Social Media Links
There is a reason nearly every influencer provides a link to their website on social media. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are great for white hat link building.
Then there’s the added exposure. Not all of your Facebook friends know about your website. But by including a link in your profile section, a lot more people can learn about your online business.
Truth be told, links from social networks don’t count as authoritative in the eyes of Google. They are low-profile links. However, they help diversify your link profile and increase traffic to your site.
Outsmart Your Competitors
This is one of the most effective white hat link building techniques today. Basically, you audit your closest competitors’ websites to discover the content they offer and where they get their backlinks.
Let’s say one of your competitors gets plenty of traffic for the keyword, “No wager casino bonuses.” For starters, you need to create a longer, more detailed post targeting this keyword.
After that, reach out to the websites with links pointing to your competitor’s website and ask for backlinks. Tell them you have a better post on the subject. Offer to guest post or exchange links.
Bottom line: Get more backlinks for your content. This can help you outrank your competitors on Google’s search engine results page.
Infographics help communicate sophisticated messages. And they are highly effective at this. According to research, infographics are so effective because the human brain processes data better than text.
Another benefit of infographics is that they don’t need to be updated constantly. If you create an infographic explaining a certain ever-green topic, it could drive traffic and links to your website for years.
The most successful infographics focus on data more than words. People love numbers. Ensure you include factual data about a topic that is relevant to your niche and audience. Then promote your infographic to let people be aware it exists.
Add Comments to Forums and Blogs
Blog and forum commenting often get a lot of undeserved hate. Some people think it’s spammy and not worth it. Quite the contrary, you can build relationships, attract traffic and use comments for white hat link building.
Picture this. You find a website in your niche that enables commenting. Next, you look for a relevant post and read it. In the comment section, provide a detailed, helpful comment that includes a link to your website.
If your comment is truly informative, it will encourage some people to visit your website. It could also attract the website owner, who may then visit your website to learn more about what you do.
Forums like Quora and Reddit serve the same purpose. You provide valuable information in your comments and leave a link pointing to your website. Not only will you increase your link profile, but you also get organic traffic.
Work with the Press
Many news websites have high domain scores—up to 90%. This is great news for you as a website owner looking for white hat link building. However, you can’t earn a link from a news site unless you offer something valuable.
Find a news website that publishes content related to yours. If you run a gaming website, find a platform that publishes topics related to gaming. Then learn the kind of content they love. Create similar content and pitch for a request to be included in their posts.
Broken Link Building
Broken link building is a white hat link building technique that involves helping website owners discover external links that don’t work. Next, you create similar content and ask the website owners to link to your content.
It sounds simple in theory but takes some work in practice. For starters, you need to audit a few websites in your niche to find their broken links. The next step is to create relevant content.
After that, send a note to each website to notify them that you have identified broken links that don’t offer value to their readers. Needless to say, also mention you have great content that may be worthy of a link.