Every website owner dreams of their site ranking on page one of Google search. However, to get there a lot of refined and long term effort is necessary. Once the basic SEO elements are in place and you have ruled out any technical weaknesses on your site, you can focus on building your domain authority. One of the crucial ingredients are links pointing to your website. Quantity has become less important as Google now judges the quality of each link and its relevance to your site, rather than the number. If you are a small business owner, don’t underestimate the power of a local link. Here’s our guide of all you need to know about links and their benefits.
How do you choose what type of link is beneficial?
In a recent Moz article, Eric Enge from Stonetemple is quoted on what he considers to be “good links”:
1. Links that will drive direct referral traffic
2. Links that build visibility with your target audience for your brand
3. Links that build your reputation
How does this translate into local links? Let’s consider the fact that your small business is targeting customers in a certain geographical location. This means you would like your customers to value your business as the best available in that given location. They would also like to see that other local businesses and organizations trust you and value what you offer. So if you have more than one local link leading to your website, an element of trust and validation is naturally built up.
Ideas on how to get great local links
Controversy is always an attention getter. If you create thought-provoking content which will either find lovers or haters, then you’re halfway there; you don’t want to be a people pleaser and make statements that are bland. By coming up with a creative and provoking story, chances are a local newspaper or magazine will pick up on it and give you that coveted local link. And don’t be shy – spread the word that you are being mentioned on all of your social media channels and your website. You could even create a poll which will provide some form of use for the local area, and then approach the publications yourself in the hope they will make a story out of your post. Chances are they will as there is always the need for new and refreshing news.
Local Business Awards
Whether local council or a newspaper, someone is always creating the top 10, top 20 or ‘best in’ lists for various occasions. Find out who runs what and then target the most appropriate ones. This can get you a great local link or two, and hopefully also attract some good traffic.
Eco friendly is a whole niche definitely worth exploring. If any aspect of your small business is green, don’t hold back – use it to your advantage. Research eco-friendly and green business directories, and then contact them one by one. If you come across any other websites promoting local “green” why not check out their websites, and if you think they are serious and strong, perhaps offer a link to their site in exchange for a link to yours?
Whether you become a sponsor of a Meet Up group or directly sponsor a club in your local community, the chances are good that you will receive a strong local link. Write a good pitch and contact the organizers by phone or email to introduce yourself and your small business. Show them how your business interacts with the community and why you would make a great sponsor. If you land the sponsorship of a great cause then by all means advertise it as much as you can.
Last but not least, create a community page on your website filled with useful services, links and contacts in your area. That way you are also giving back a local link at a time to businesses just like your own. Local residents and visitors will find your page informative and helpful. The businesses you link to might just link back to your site, once they are aware of your service.