If you’ve been following me or my work even a little, you’ll know by now that when it comes to local SEO links, the more backlinks a.k.a votes your website has, the higher it will rank on Google.
This is because Google’s algorithm is like a voting system.
Since I talk about backlinks all the time, let me take a second to explain what a backlink is: it is a clickable text from one website to another that takes you between the two websites.
The real question then is: how do you get high-quality backlinks to your website?
With local SEO, you want to make sure that the backlinks you get are relevant and in the same geographic location as yours because Google will pick that up.
Google will see that you’re getting backlinks from websites in the same local areas, implying that your website is credible or authoritative. That’s enough proof for Google to push your website up in its algorithm.
Wait, there’s a catch …
But at the same time, how high you rank on search engines also highly depends on what your competitors are doing.
You may be wondering, how many backlinks do I need to rank #1 on Google? This comes down to your competition because well, there’s only one #1 spot.
So, you have to try and outdo your competition when it comes to link-building.
Well, you can work backwards and think how many backlinks do your competitors have and what’s their quality like?
A tool like Ahrefs can help you figure that out. Once you’ve done that, you can estimate the number of backlinks you’ll need to outdo your competition.
But … how do you get backlinks?
Well, the first thing I would say is that you need to build some citations. These will help you rank higher on Google because it lists your company on other websites and is similar to a directory.
And ultimately, it means that you build up some authority for your website.
But at the same time, you also need backlinks. One of the easiest ways to get backlinks to your website is to contact partners and suppliers you have locally. Here are some other ways.
So, if you’re working with any suppliers locally, or even if you engage in charity work locally, then potentially, you could ask them for a link back to your website.
This would signal to Google that you’re an authority in your region and therefore, you should be pushed up in their results.
For example, you could contact local newspapers, the local chamber of commerce, or even foundations that you’ve worked with in the past or suppliers that you work with you currently. This goes a long way in showing your credibility to Google.
What to watch out for
One key point to be careful of when it comes to local SEO link-building is that if you build too many backlinks or if those links are very low in quality, that signals spam to Google, and you could get penalized for this.
So for example, don’t go on freelance websites and buy a load of automated links because even though they may be cheap and appear to be a quick fix, it could hurt your business in the long run.
It’s better to focus on a handful of high-quality backlinks than a ton of low-quality ones.
Other ways to get backlinks
The other thing you could do is publish guest posts on other sites that are related to yours.
For example, if you’re a local business in the plumbing industry, you could contact other plumbing-related websites and ask them for a guest post.
You could reach out to them through email or a simple call and say, Hey, we want to contribute a high-quality article to your website. We think your readers would love it. Would you mind if we published a 1000 or so word article on a topic of your choice?
These types of posts can massively help your website get ranked because it funnels authority from that URL to yours, showing Google that your website is garnering others’ trust.
What you could also do is understand how your competitors get backlinks and then contact those sites that have links to your competitors.
So, you can again use a tool like Ahrefs, plug in your competitor’s URL or 10 of them, look at their backlinks profile and check the websites linked to your competitors’ websites.
You can download that list, find their email addresses and contact everyone who is linked to your competitor and say, Hey, I noticed you linked to XX website. Maybe you want to link to us too?
This can land you a ton of backlinks. It’s what’s known as the skyscraper technique. It’s a powerful method that has worked for many of our clients, and I would highly recommend it to you.
In the below video, you can find more ways to build backlinks using your competitors’ links.
How many backlinks do I need?
I would say it’s an ongoing process like, say, brushing your teeth. If you brush your teeth just one time per week, it’s not really going to do the job.
But, if you build links every day and do it consistently, this technique can produce tremendous results. And you have to understand that with link building or any type of SEO, it never stops.
You’ve got to continually improve and keep building on what you’ve already done because that will help you stay ahead of your competition.
The opposite is also true. If you stop building backlinks, your competitors won’t, and they’ll eventually outrank you.
So, continue with link-building, do it on a regular basis and it will help your business stand out.
If you want to further expand your knowledge of SEO, you can download our free book, “Local SEO Mastery” here. It will teach you many link building tricks and local SEO strategies to help you rank your website higher.