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Sunday, January 6, 2013

2013: The Year of Link Building

Posted by @ 4:06 pm

As a new year sets in, now is the perfect time to get your online marketing plan into full swing.

Any online marketing plan should include link building and while 2012 was a big year for link building, 2013 is expected to be even more tumultuous.

Eric Ward from Search Engine Watch has outlined some tactics and predictions for link building to watch out for in 2013. They are well worth a quick glance over, so here they are in no particular order:


  • The tactic: Analytics

That is, the analyzing of every possible aspect of every possible link so that we know every possible thing about the links that link (or don’t link) to us or to our competitors, or to whatever site we’re curious about.

2013 prediction:
While currently dominated by big names like SEOmoz and Majestic, and in niches by specialists like Blekko and AdGooroo’s Link Insight, I expect more players to enter this niche.

The challenge is not so much in analyzing the data. The challenge is in correctly selecting the right data to analyze, and then correctly selecting the strategies and tactics that will help you the most.

Bonus prediction: there will be a surprise player emerge in 2013 that will dramatically impact the link analysis niche. Don’t say LinkMoses didn’t tell you. It’s coming


  • The tactic: Infographics as link bait

2013 prediction:
People make this one much harder than they need to. It’s simple. Bad infographics are bad for link attraction, while great infographics that help take complex statistical data and make it understandable will always be a great way to attract links and traffic.


  • The tactic: Directories

All 700 million of them.

2013 prediction:
This is more of a hope than a prediction, but my hope is that all people recognize what is and isn’t a truly viable and useful directory versus someone’s attempt to capitalize on the link seeking frenzy.

The directories that matter will be specialist. Curated. Topical. Purposeful. And not be able to be manipulated.


  • The tactic: Sponsorships

By sponsorships I mean the technique of paying to be a sponsor of an event or organization just for the opportunity to get a link in return. Usually from a .org, this is the not-a-paid-link-wink-wink tactic.

2013 prediction:
The engines will be looking for footprints in this content, and while I don’t expect penalties, don’t be surprised to see vast numbers of links ignored.


  • The tactic: Guest posting

The end goal is the same: content containing a link to your site is placed on another site. But all guest posting opportunities are not created equal, and that’s the key here.

2013 prediction:
The A-list blogs will be highly coveted destinations and pursued for guest post placement, while those who are not as selective about what they allow on their blogs will nose-dive.

Another form of curation is developing here. Not just the curation of credible blogs, but the curation of credible guest bloggers. Selectivity is crucial to success.


  • The tactic: Press releases

Most people today issue press releases not to announce something truly newsworthy, but rather because it’s another way to shove a link or two or three, anchor text included, down the search engines throats.

2013 prediction:
The secret to effective use of press releases is in where your place them and in formatting the version that’s on your own site differently the one you send out via a wire service. If you aren’t putting your press releases about your company on your own site, that’s a mistake and a huge opportunity lost.

What content would you trust more, content you find on, or the press release you place on your own site which has its own existing and credible link profile?


  • The tactic: Mobile

I absolutely love mobile from a link building perspective, but some marketers are missing many easy gets. You can implement mobile linking strategies for clients who don’t have a mobile site or an app or a webcast. You just have to be creative and aware.

2013 prediction:
Those who don’t take the time to learn the potential and available mobile opportunities will be left behind.


Will your link building tactics change in 2013 from 2012?

Courtney Mills Courtney is an online marketing and communications specialist at ineedhits - a leading search engine marketing firm with over 16 years experience. Courtney has been living and breathing online marketing for over 5 years. She specializes in web and communication marketing, while providing news and opinion to online marketing communities.

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