Link Building for SEO: The Beginner's Guide

Staff Writer
Last Updated
May 7, 2024
Table of Contents
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Among the plethora of strategies to enhance a website's ranking on SERPs, link building stands as one of the most effective solutions. Want to understand more about this effective SEO strategy? Check out the thorough explanation below!

What is Link Building?

Link building is the process of getting other websites to link to your website. It essentially resembles the process of creating a web of recommendations across the internet. Search engines, like Google, will interpret these links as validations of trustworthiness. In other words, when other websites link to your page, it will signal to Google that your page holds significance.

The greater the number of respected websites linking to yours, the more authoritative and reliable your website appears to search engine algorithms. Ultimately this can lead to higher rankings for each content you upload in the search engine.

Why Link Building Is Important?

1. Building Quality Relationships

Link building involves reaching out to other website owners or influencers within your industry to request or earn backlinks. This process fosters connections and relationships with another player in your niche. Establishing this relationship can lead to collaborations, partnerships, and other opportunities beyond just acquiring links. Moreover, building a relationship with an authoritative website can also enhance your credibility which can be invaluable to achieving long-term success.

2. Sending Referral Traffic

When a reputable website links to your site, it will not only signal authority to search engines but also open up possibilities for new visitors to discover your site. This is commonly known as driving referral traffic. These visitors are often highly relevant and will engage in your content because they are interested in the products or services that you offer on your website. This shows that link building can act as a conduit for directing more targeted traffic to your site, potentially increasing conversion and engagement.

3. Building Awareness Around the Brand

Being able to acquire backlinks from reputable and relevant websites can help to increase your brand’s visibility and awareness. When your website is linked to authoritative sources, it can expose your brand to a broader audience who may not have known of your existence before. This will help to increase visibility and can lead to a higher level of brand recognition, trust, and credibility among your target audience.

How to Build Links?

Link-building strategies fall into one of the following strategies:

  • Adding links: Manually inserting your link onto a website.
  • Asking for links: Reaching out to the owners of websites and requesting them to link back to your site.
  • Buying links: Offering compensation such as money, in exchange for a link.
  • Earning links: Generating and promoting high-quality content that others naturally link to without any solicitation.

Another option one can do is to enlist the services of a seasoned link builder or digital marketing agency to handle the process, as managing a link-building strategy can be full of hassle!

How to Acquire High-Quality Links?

1. URL Rating

URL Rating (UR) is a feature of Ahrefs that measures how good the backlinks are for a website, it can give a score to the backlinks going to a particular page. UR shows how strong a page's backlinks are on a scale from 0 to 100. The higher the number, the better the page's backlinks. 

This feature shows the authority of a page refers to its perceived trustworthiness, credibility, and influence in the eyes of search engines. It is important to note that pages with higher authority will be more likely to have a positive impact on the site’s rankings when they link back to you. 

2. Authority of the Site

The authority of a website plays a crucial role in link building. Websites with higher authority, often measured using metrics like Domain Authority (DA) and Domain Rating (DR) are more likely to pass on valuable link equity to your site. When you’re able to acquire backlinks from authoritative websites, it will help you to significantly boost your site's credibility and search engine rankings.

3. Relevancy

Relevance is essential when it comes to link building. Instead of focusing on the quantity of the websites that are linked to yours, it is much better if you focus on getting links from quality websites and pages that are contextually relevant to your content or industry. 

For example, if you aim to generate links for a home cleaning business, acquiring a link from a car-related website wouldn't be beneficial since it lacks relevance to your site or service. Links from relevant sources carry more weight with search engines and are more likely to drive targeted traffic to your site. Additionally, they will help establish your site's authority within its niche.

4. Link Position On the Page

The position of your link on a webpage can also impact its effectiveness. Generally, links placed higher up on a page, within the main content area, tend to carry more weight than those buried in footers, sidebars, or low-visibility sections. Aim for links that are prominently featured and surrounded by relevant content, as they are more likely to be clicked on and recognized as valuable by search engines.

5. The Anchor Text

Anchor text refers to the clickable text of a hyperlink. It's crucial to optimize anchor text to provide context and relevance to both users and search engines. Ideally, anchor text should contain relevant keywords or descriptive phrases that accurately reflect the content of the linked page. Avoid generic or spammy anchor text, as it can be perceived as manipulative by search engines and may result in penalties.

6. Nofollow vs. Follow

Links can be classified as either "nofollow" or "follow." Follow links are standard hyperlinks that pass link equity and contribute to a site's search engine rankings. In contrast, "nofollow" links contain a special HTML attribute that instructs search engines not to pass link equity. While "nofollow" links may not directly impact your site's rankings, they can still drive valuable referral traffic and contribute to a diverse backlink profile. Additionally, earning a mix of both "follow" and "nofollow" links appears more natural to search engines and helps mitigate the risk of algorithmic penalties.

By considering these factors when acquiring backlinks, you can effectively build a diverse and high-quality link profile that enhances your site's authority, visibility, and search engine rankings.

What Are the Best Backlink Building Strategies?


Outreach involves reaching out to relevant websites, bloggers, journalists, or influencers within your industry to request backlinks to your content. This proactive approach often entails personalized emails or messages that highlight the value of your content and how it can benefit your audience. Building genuine relationships and offering reciprocal value are key to successful outreach campaigns.

Become a Source

Positioning yourself or your brand as an expert in your field can attract backlinks organically. By regularly contributing valuable insights, opinions, or expertise to online publications, forums, or social media platforms, you increase your chances of being cited and linked to by other websites seeking authoritative sources.

Broken Link Building

Broken link building involves identifying broken links on other websites, typically within content relevant to your niche, and offering your content as a replacement. This strategy provides value to website owners by helping them fix broken links while simultaneously securing backlinks to your site.

Create Linkable Assets

Linkable assets are high-quality, valuable content pieces specifically designed to attract backlinks naturally. This could include comprehensive guides, original research, infographics, case studies, or interactive tools that address common pain points or provide unique insights within your industry. By creating content that others naturally want to reference and share, you increase the likelihood of earning backlinks.

Find Unlinked Brand Mentions 

Unlinked brand mentions occur when other websites mention your brand or products/services but do not include a hyperlink. By monitoring brand mentions using tools like Google Alerts or Mention, you can identify opportunities to reach out to these websites and request that they add a link to your site. This strategy helps capitalize on existing brand visibility and turn passive mentions into valuable backlinks.

Examine Competitor Backlinks

Analyzing your competitors' backlink profiles can also be a great strategy to improve your link building strategy. You will get valuable insights and new opportunities for acquiring backlinks from reputable sites. Tools like Ahrefs or Moz's Link Explorer allow you to identify which websites are linking to your competitors but not to your site. By understanding where your competitors are acquiring backlinks, you can develop targeted outreach strategies to secure similar links for your site.

Reclaim Lost Backlinks

Over time, backlinks to your site may become broken or lost due to changes in website structure, content updates, or domain migrations. By regularly monitoring your backlink profile using tools like Google Search Console or specialized backlink analysis tools, you can identify and reclaim lost backlinks by reaching out to website owners and requesting that they reinstate the link or fix any issues causing it to be broken.

Cardinal Digital for a Better Link-Building Strategy

Crafting a great link-building strategy demands more than mere effort; it requires a thorough strategy. Want to improve your link-building strategy, but have no time to do it by yourself? Work with Cardinal Digital to elevate your website’s authority and visibility without hassle! 

At Cardinal Digital we will be able to tailor your link-building strategies to your unique needs and objectives, and take your business to the new height! 

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