A Beginner Guide to Link Building for eCommerce Websites

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So you’ve been looking for ways on how to increase the traffic flow to your eCommerce site and get more sales. This is where link building comes into play.

In this article, I will tell you about what link building actually is, why it is beneficial for your eCommerce business and how to do it.

Let’s start by answering the first question.

What is Link Building?

Link building is a process of acquiring links that point back to your website, from other sites. The premise is very simple: the more inbound links you have, the more people will see them, which in turn means more clicks, visits and potentially increased sales. 

Theoretically, the more backlinks you have, the better. However, not all links will provide your online business resource with the same amount of value. Generally, there are three categories of inbound links:

  • Ones from tiny websites that only appeared on the Web recently;
  • Links from medium-sized blogs with a decent audience;
  • Links from huge resources (like The Washington Post, The Daily Mail etc.).

Ideally, during your link building campaign, you should focus on the second type since they already have a large enough audience that a link from them can bring actual value to you but not so ginormous there’s no chance of reaching them with an e-mail.

How to Start Building Links to Your eCommerce Website?

Most of the ways of building links involve outreach, but I will leave that for a little bit later in the article. Another thing that almost every link building strategy requires is solid pieces of content. 

So, what are some of the ways of building links? Well, let’s start with strategies that don’t involve other people. 

First of all, if you are running a blog that helps you promote your e-shop, you could reformat some of your content. For example, if you have a 5000 word beast of an article, you could convert it into video format and upload it to YouTube. Put a link back to the original work and there you go! You’ve earned yourself a backlink. However, the power of that link might be somewhat limited.

You could also spend some time on forums and message boards like Quora, Reddit, etc. Seek questions relevant to your online sales niche and answer them, plugging a link to your site or your product while doing so. Just make sure you actually provide users with valuable information and not just advertise your products.

Now Let’s Talk Outreach

The most valuable backlinks can only be gained through a process called outreach. While there’s a number of strategies of doing it, they all share a similarity: you have to talk to people in order to get backlinks from their resources.

Outreach is literally the process of reaching out to bloggers or webmasters with the goal of building links. Let’s discuss two of the easiest strategies revolving around outreach: unlinked mentions and broken link building.

Unlinked mentions are mentions of your brand that don’t have a link attached to them. This is the ideal situation, since if you simply ask the owner of the site with such a mention, you’re more than likely to turn that into a proper backlink. 

As for broken link building, it’s a little bit different. What you do is find websites that have dead or not functioning links to content that is similar to yours. How can you turn that into a backlink of your own? Well, if you have content that can fill that hole you can just offer it to the site owner and inform them about the dead link. If your content is good (which I’m sure it is), you have a very high chance of getting that link for yourself.

Please note that the anchor text of the link matters a lot as it allows Google to better understand what your eCommerce site is offering. That’s why I highly encourage you to use professional tools like Linkio to choose the proper wording.     

Steal a Backlink for Your Online Store

Speaking about good content, you can also straight-up snatch backlinks from inferior resources. For example, if you see a link pointing to an article similar to yours but inferior, you can once again e-mail the owner of that site and offer your content instead and point out how it is better than the one they are currently linking to. Again, it is very likely that you’ll be able to steal that backlink for yourself since there is literally no reason to refuse a better piece of content.

Show Your Authority & Write a Guest Article 

But the surest way of getting a high-authority backlink is guest blogging. Approach a blog relevant to eCommerce niche and offer to write for them. It is a mutually beneficial thing since they receive a perfectly good piece of content and you get a decently strong backlink. 

There are some intricacies in the entire outreach process, but I’m not going to get too deep into them for the sake of keeping this guide relatively short and beginner-friendly. The most important things that you have to remember when asking people for links is that they are people too and you have to be considerate and respectful.

But most importantly, in your outreach emails, you have to be brief, clear and transparent. And don’t use templated e-mails, they look robotic and show that you haven’t invested any time into them. Try to make the other person see that you got to know them and their content and then you’ll have a much higher chance of getting backlinks from them. Oh, and you need to provide them with some kind of value as well (such as a good guest article). 

One last thing: there exist countless tools that will help you with each stage of your outreach campaign, from finding prospects to gathering their contact information to writing your link pitch and organizing follow-ups. So, even though the tasks may feel a little intimidating at first, you don’t have to do anything manually. 

Wrapping This Up

There’s more to link building than I’ve described, but I will end this here in order to not flood you with information and keep this friendly for beginners. Good luck with your link building campaign.

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