Link building is one of the prime aspects of online marketing. Links help you to widen brand presence, build traffic and rank high on search engines.
Links found within the body of content, or in context with text surrounding it, are known as contextual links. The contextual links can be gained naturally and manually.
Natural contextual links are those where an independent site links to your blog or website out of their own goodwill. They do so from their perspective that your page is useful and informative to their visitors.
Manual contextual links are those which require intervention on your part. For instance, guest blogging is a strategy to create editorial contextual links manually. You write on an independent website and link back to your domain through contextual linking.
Let me give you a brief guide to build contextual links.
One of the best and trusted ways to build contextual links is Guest Blogging. Though Matt Cutts, head of Google’s Web spam team, claims that guest blogging is dead for SEO, it still qualifies as a trustworthy linking metric.
Follow the Guest Blogging Guide which has been covered earlier.
Some important points:
- Find blogs related to your niche and contribute on them.
- The content should be of premium quality.
Normally, site owners allow guest bloggers to add links in the author bio, which is placed below the content. However, if your article is of premium quality, you may request the blog owner to allow you to add a link (to your site) within the body of content. Most of the time, they will allow you.
Note: Target good and authority blogs to create quality contextual links.
Fix Broken Links of Other Blogs
Suppose you have an epic post on a topic and you want maximum exposure (plus links). What you can do is find and contact webmasters in your niche and ask them to contextually link back to you.
There is another method to gain contextual links for your post which is known as Broken Link Building.
How do you do this?
- Search blogs in your niche.
- Visit the blog and use the search bar to find any blog post related to your topic.
- See if that specific blog post links out to other sites.
- If they do, check if the links to other sites are functional or broken. Use the Check my Links app for Chrome or BrokenLinkCheck.com to check this.
- If there are any broken links and you feel that your link could be a suitable substitute, contact the webmaster.
- In the contact email, introduce yourself, mention that you found certain link(s) to be broken, ask them to remove it (coz broken links are not good for SEO) and request them to insert your link.
- To avoid rejection, your article should of real value.
- If the webmaster agrees, congrats, you have a contextual link.
Though it is a bit time consuming and also finding such broken links is pretty tough, still this is a pretty cool way to build contextual links. Sometimes, using this method, you can get links from high PR pages.
Raise Brand Awareness
The reason why brands like Moz, Copyblogger, Technorati and others have high number of contextual links is due to their brand presence or value.
In the past, they were in the same place where you are now. Fast forward few years, they are a brand and people link to them contextually in a natural fashion.
You won’t find them seeking links. Their brand value speaks for themselves. Bloggers and webmasters link to their premium resources willingly.
Therefore, instead of spending your time on amassing links through cheap link building strategies, spend that time on building a brand value.
Create and Promote Evergreen Infographics
Infographics are a great way to gain contextual links. There are many blogs that share quality Infographics and hence, gain quality contextual links from various sources.
Hire someone to create few Infographics. You can Do-it-Yourself if you aren’t short of creative skills.
Create Infographics that are evergreen and relevant at any point of time.
How to promote Infographics and get contextual links?
- Create an attractive Infographic on a trending but evergreen topic related to your niche.
- Find blogs related to your niche and ask them to share your infographic with their readers. If the content is good, the positive response rate will be high.
- Guest blog on good sites and embed the infographic on the guest post.
- Below the Infographic, place a small code so that others can share it. Make sure the code gives contextual links back to the main source (your page).
A good 3-month plan can bring useful contextual links through one Infographic. Now, just imagine how many links you can build using more Infographics.
For guest blogging, broken link building and Infographics, you have to depend on other sites. And as far as brand awareness is concerned, well, it may take a minimum of 6 months to 1 year.
So, is there any method using which you don’t have to depend on someone else?
Yes! You can build contextual links using Web 2.0 properties. How to do this?
- Create an account on any of the popular Web 2.0 properties like blogger.com, wordpress.com, tumblr.com, Squidoo, etc.
- Write a good article related to your niche.
- Article should be of minimum 500 words. 700+ words are recommended.
- Add 1 or 2 links (not more than that) within the body of the article.
- That’s it. You have 2 do-follow contextual links.
- Repeat the above steps for other web 2.0 properties.
- Write link baiting content (Follow the link baiting content guide)
- Many authors write monthly round-up articles, where they list the best articles they have read in that particular month. Contact those authors, share your BEST article(s) and request them to add it in their next monthly round-up article. Worst case – They will not add it. Best case – If 5 out of 100 accept your proposal, you will have 5 quality contextual links.