The 80-20 rule is a way to focus on the tasks that get the most results while requiring the least amount of effort. That is the Pareto Principle and I have been practicing it since the beginning of the year.
The rule applies to link building as well as other online endeavors and marketing overall. Dan Shure explained this very well recently in a blog post. It involves allocating most of your time to put processes into effect that will maximize your efforts to realize the best results possible.
Following is Dan’s advice to people who want to use the rule of 80/20 for SEO purposes:
Determine which efforts are working and do MORE of them.
Determine which are NOT working and do LESS of those.
Determine results to volume in link development. When your brand offers real value, you will realize better results than you even expected from it. This is true whether you are spending time on shares, sales, brand impressions, increasing traffic, or (especially) link building.
Following are several activities for link building which do not require a lot of effort but can have quite an impact on your business and marketing goals.
Since people will always find good content useful, this will help send a tremendous amount of links to your site with time.
Articles with encyclopedia information are some of the best known evergreen content, such as those from Wikipedia and similar sources. Others are case studies and comprehensive tutorials such as PDFs, blog posts and videos—in particular, content that solves a problem with your products as a solution.
When your site has more evergreen content available, it can continue to increase your link profile. This is because the content will not become outdated or stale, making it a valid source of information that others can use as a reference.
Feel free to check out one of my former posts on the subject of evergreen content, as a way to automate marketing and sales for your business.
Another asset for a business or company to increase their websites links are special events combined with a strong landing page that will be updated for the new event every year.
One of the largest yearly industry-wide events is Pubcon. The landing page for this event receives a great amount of links. Once the event is over, it also generates reviews which continue to bring in traffic.
When that particular platform is used, it offers good value and is most effective because people find it worth visiting, which produces links.
Author Profile Pages
If the people who work with you and are part of your brand do any of their own marketing, you may want to optimize their profile pages. This is especially true if they actively market content and are known by publishing guest blogs, columns, and so on outside of your website.
This is because they will be mentioned from time to time by other merchants and content creators. Normally publishers mainly link to personal sites and Twitter handles when they mention authors.
If you create a profile page for each one, you can then reclaim mentions that were not linked, wherever you find one.
Use links you receive from ranking pages
A great source of links are pages with good rankings for keywords or long-tail searches. This is not just that they have ranking power which comes back to your site, but also that they send traffic continually back to your site, as they constantly receive visitors from the search engines.
Other link building methods can be used to get links from high ranking websites, such as commenting on forums, posting comments on blogs, or answering questions on a Q&A webpage or thread.
Take all the keywords from your long-tail keyword list and do a web search for all of them. Next, check the highest ranking pages you found through each search and decide if you have information you can add to their content.
The more value you can add, the more it will be noticed by the visitors to the page. That will translate to better chances of receiving more traffic referred from them as time goes by.
I still get good traffic for over two years from a few links I built in the past, and some of this traffic still converts. Think of them as more than a link source and as a channel of traffic, in order to get the most from them.
Build easily ranking pages from other websites.
Make regular contributions or guest posts to publications that have high search rankings. Normally, these would be the top websites in your niche or industry. Pay attention to the ones with high Alexa Rank, SE Traffic Price and Domain Authority.
When you contribute content containing your keywords on high ranking sites, you will benefit in many ways.
You will receive better qualified traffic to your site because of the traffic the well-ranking sites are getting. In this way, your content will be able to compete with the top of the search results. You will continually get impressions that will help to strengthen your brand and Internet presence. Because of the topical relevance of your content and the authority of the other site, the links you get will pass some of the high ranking power to your own site.
For example, I did this post on SEOmoz last year. At this time, I still receive good traffic, leads and potential clients for my business to this day.
Make good use of the popular document sharing websites such as Scribd, YouTube, Pinterest and Slideshare when you build external pages. They can rank easily in the search results because they have domain authority and a strong search share that you can use to target your long-tail keywords.
Associations and Partnerships
Some link builders or SEOs claim that to compete in the search engines, you need a link from hundreds or even thousands of various domains. I do not really agree with that.
While it is true that a diversified link profile is needed, it also needs to be as natural as possible.
I would much rather have many links from one trusted domain than having to manually visit a thousand sites to contribute a guest post.
When many links come from one relevant authority site, it shows a deeper relationship between the websites. I believe it shows that you are also an authority if you receive many links from an established authority site, would you agree? Search engines can use that information as a strong signal when trying to determine the importance of your site.
Another good way to build links is by leveraging partnerships. This is especially true when you have associations with publications or partners with high traffic and your same target market. It will help to improve your website’s visibility and increase your user base and readership.
You can find ways of maximizing your partnerships, such as:
Your brand will become visible to your partners’ visitors if you regularly contribute content to their websites. It is a way for all partners to promote each others’ sites and products. Gizmodo’s partners have been doing this for some time and they are sending many visitors and traffic to all partners.
Blogroll links still refer a lot of traffic, and it is good for branding also. In particular, it lets your target audience know the various partners with whom you are associated. Trust is very important online and it makes people want to link to you more.
Content from others who are influential
The easiest way to get links is probably by asking authority bloggers to post a guest article on your blog. Since they are established experts in their field, they will have a readership base who will link to the content or share it with others. In addition, most experienced bloggers link back to their articles when they need it for a reference.
Interviews are still another way to get valuable content to influential people in the niche or industry. However, many interviews do not generate many links because they are not really interesting. To over come this, ask the really tough questions and specifics so that people would be more inclined to link to the content in the future.
Build links with images
Images are share worthy and will generate links because the Internet needs them, whether they are a cinema graph, photograph, typography GIF or others on a long list of possibilities.
A very powerful link is a review of your own products. This is because review links can send potential customers to you who are already primed to buy.
Having a review of your products by bloggers also helps increase your brand awareness and maintains your brand in the search results.
Have your existing customer base build the links for you.
On your sign-up form in the opt-in box where users and customers enter their information, add a field where they can also enter the URL to their website. Doing that will make it easy to find those who have a blog or website of their own.
You will have a greater chance of getting reviews from them if they like your service or product once you begin to pitch them. Or send free products to them that they may want to review.
Links from Twitter followers
Use Followerwonk to import your followers list. Separate the ones who have blogs and websites in a special segment. Since they are your followers on Twitter already, it would not be the same to contact them as it would be for a prospect with whom you are not familiar.
Make your pages that rank more linkable
There is great potential for a high ranking page to become a magnet for links because they are easy to find by researchers looking for certain kinds of information.
Check your analytics search traffic data and find the keywords that you are ranking well for already.
As an example, I discovered recently that one page of mine is ranking high for « social media marketing strategies. »
Each week the landing page gets a goodly amount of traffic and it even managed to get a few natural links and editorial links, since it is apparently a good resource.
However, the page is not really complete yet, so if I make it the ultimate resource for social media, who knows where it will go, right? So with just a minimal amount of effort, it should surely continue to attract links over time.
To sum it up, find pages on your site that are ranking already for your informational keywords, then make improvements to optimize the content to attract linkers and researchers.
Zemanta has more than 500,000 publishers in their network. It is a paid publishers’ content distribution tool that displays recommendations for content.
Paid users or advertisers can have their images or content displayed prominently in the recommendation area, and that can attract many links.
Some of the advantages are that bloggers can see your brand name or site as they write.
The blogger can choose to link to your content in their post or place your link as a related post at the bottom.
Become involved in the online community for your industry, make friends and build relationships. All of this is part of a marketing principle that you can implement to start and grow a successful online business.