SEO Question: How can I use content as a method to build backlinks?


Image from SXC.hu

SEO Question: I recently read in your blog post with Barry Schwartz that using content for link building is a great method – how can this be?

Great question and I must say that I agree with Barry’s comments; here is the answer from the post with Barry:

“I think good quality content that is fresh works well for me, breaking stories, finding new features or tips and even finding crazy bugs first. I also like posting polls because they attract links twice, once to get people to vote and then for them to see the results when they are posted. Finally, trending and news stories tend to rank fast and well, but die off later – but if they catch a wave, oh boy can they send in links.”

Now to break this down, there are few areas which stick out in terms of writing link worthy content, they are:

  • Breaking stories
  • Finding new features
  • Sharing tips
  • Bugs and errors
  • Trends

As you can see from the above, they are all based around new developments and it doesn’t matter what industry you are in there are always going to be breaking news stories; and social sites like Twitter and Facebook have shown that these spread like wildfire.

But it doesn’t stop there…

Simply writing a post on a product can also be link worthy to, and something I recommend a lot – but it’s not just about writing a review, add little extras like videos, a selection of images and a unique point about the product which can work well – in my opinion all link worthy content has to have a USP.

If you look at all the posts I have written, the ones with free downloads are typically the most shared and linked to, that is the USP – the download.

The post I wrote on Google+ / SEO was also shared and linked to a lot as well – this falls under the breaking news /sharing tips section – it gave a breakdown about the topic with real world experiences – which is very link worthy and was a trending topic at the time.

As a side note, I’ve also seen infographics (which are visual illustrations of information and data) are highly linked to.

You’ve also got to remember the Google Freshness Update…

Here is what Google says the freshness update is all about:

“Given the incredibly fast pace at which information moves in today’s world, the most recent information can be from the last week, day or even minute, and depending on the search terms, the algorithm needs to be able to figure out if a result from a week ago about a TV show is recent, or if a result from a week ago about breaking news is too old. We completed our Caffeine web indexing system last year, which allows us to crawl and index the web for fresh content quickly on an enormous scale.”

So in a nutshell, breaking news stories around certain searches (trending topics) will rank better than a post which may have been written previously (but remember it needs to be unique and quality content – plus trust will also play a part).

Google gives a great example on how this works:

“If I search for [olympics], I probably want information about next summer’s upcoming Olympics, not the 1900 Summer Olympics (the only time my favorite sport, cricket, was played). Google Search uses a freshness algorithm, designed to give you the most up-to-date results, so even when I just type [olympics] without specifying 2012, I still find what I’m looking for.”

To read more on this update, click here.

So as you can see from Barry’s, mine and the recent Google update, new, fresh and breaking content can be used to gain backlinks which will help your overall campaign, trust and authority.

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