How to Get Free Backlinks in 2021
- By Yana Bilokin
- March 25, 2021
If you’re looking where to buy backlinks to your website, don’t rush till you finish this article. Why? Because now I’ll do my best to make you change your mind by showing you how to get those precious backlinks for free. That is why if you’re ready to invest some time in order to increase your domain authoritativeness and brand awareness, let’s get started.
Why do we need backlinks?
“Backlinks” of other websites linking back to your page play a huge role in SEO. This is because search engines use them as a factor that tells how valuable your website is. You can consider them as votes. The more votes you get, the higher are your chances to rank high in SERPs and get an enormous amount of free organic traffic to your site.
It does matter where you got your backlinks from!
The strategy of earning tons of backlinks from every website you can possibly reach out might hurt you more than it could help. The reason is simple – the reputation of websites linking to your page matters as well as their relevance to your business. The connection between your sites should be logically structured and look natural.
When search engines walk through your backlinks, they can decide to increase your rankings, ignore them, or penalize your positions. That is why make sure you’re doing it the right way.
On average, it takes 10 weeks per link to increase your position by one. I’m mentioning it here in order to stress that link building is a long-run marathon. You have to be prepared upfront and don’t expect fast results. Only if you’re being strategic and intentional with your approaches, you have all the chances to win the SEO game.
Ok then, I don’t want you to think that I’m beating about the bush here. Let’s jump right in the smart ways that will help you earn or build backlinks to your website for free.
Use the “Second Serving” technique to monitor your backlinks profile
This method can’t be used by newborn websites as they have nothing to check yet but they will be able to benefit from this step in the future.
In order to check the backlink profile of your website for free, grab a 30-day trial of Monitor Backlinks (no credit card required) and get an in-depth overview of your current status. With the following screenshot, I want to show you the possible picture you might get.
As you can see, there is a yellow triangle with an exclamation mark in the Date column. It appears when the built backlink came out to show you where to focus your attention at.
The point of the “Second Serving” technique is about reaching out to websites again and ask them for new backlinks.
If you have an established relationship with a website, just sent them an email where you’ll mention how grateful you are for the past backlink and then suggest a new one. Keep the message short and focus on the recipient rather than you. Check these link-building outreach templates to have more chances to succeed.
In case you don’t have a firm relationship with a website, do the outreach anyway. Contact with website owner or their editor but do your research upfront. Although, you have fewer chances to get a free backlink here, at least you’ve done everything you could to potentially win.
Use infographics to get free backlinks
Visuals, and infographics especially, are among the top methods to earn sustainable free backlinks. According to Venngage, 49% of digital marketers rate visuals as very important, 22% consider it important to their marketing strategy, while 19% claim that their strategy is nothing without visual content.
Everybody prefers visual content as it’s easier to comprehend and follow. But keep in mind that in order to create infographics that attract free backlinks, you have to make sure you did your research first.
So, what makes a successful infographic?
- It should solve a problem the audience is facing
- Has a clear structure that’s easy to follow
- It replaces the number of written material by summing it up
- Has a unique style and a sense of good taste
- Includes your logo and a company’s name
The good news is that you don’t have to be a professional designer to create a stunning infographic, just use free tools that were created to make your life easier. I personally recommend opting for Canva because it has been helping me for as long as I’m into marketing. I’m leaving their official guide to design infographics from scratch like a pro for you could check out.
After your visuals are ready, don’t forget to use the Siege Media generator to create an embed code in order to make it easier for others to share it.
Then, make sure your infographic is evenly distributed across all your social platforms (where it’s relevant of course). This will increase its visibility and your chances to get more free backlinks.
In case you don’t want to wait until your graphics hit their target audience, there is no problem in manual outreach to people who have already linked to similar visuals and might potentially be interested in yours. In your messages, still, don’t push a person to use your infographic and get you a backlink for that, better ask for their feedback. Believe me, if they like it, they will definitely use it.
Use HARO to Generate Backlinks
Link building is the top reason why marketers use HARO as a part of their SEO strategies. HARO, or Help A Reporter Out, is an incredible free way to earn backlinks on authoritative websites. It was created to match journalists with sources who have a missing piece for a perfect article – niche expertise. Although at first this platform was established particularly for journalists, now it is also used by marketers, bloggers, online business owners, influencers, and others as well.
HARO is performing in two directions:
1. Journalists, bloggers, and influencers submit requests in order to find relevant sources that will potentially help them create a unique story, interview, or blog post.
2. Sources get featured in a content piece (or earn that precious free backlink) if a reporter has chosen to use their submitted answer.
Don’t ignore this method if you want to increase your SERPs positions. Implementing HARO is extremely beneficial for your SEO because Google considers referral links from the high-authoritative media domains as the most trustworthy.
In order to get started just sign up as a source and make sure you’ve customized HARO preferences to filter out industries to get the most relevant queries.
After you’ve done everything correctly, you will start receiving three emails a day from Monday to Friday (at 05:35, 12:35, and 17:35 ET). Each one of them will include a summary of topics, where the subject will be the actual topic of the query mentioned. Also, you’ll be able to see the website’s name where this article will be published along with information the reporter is looking for.
Keep in mind, though, that you won’t be the only one replying to the query. That is why I don’t recommend you stretching yourself too thin by trying to answer as many queries as you possibly can. Be strategic and always opt for quality over quantity.
When you found a relevant topic you want to contribute to, make sure you’ve provided the most specific and valuable answer. Remember, that reporters don’t just gather some random opinions, they want to create a unique story and will choose the answer that will save their time on additional edits.
This is how you help a reporter out and get a trustworthy backlink from a high-authority site as a reward.
Take Advantage of Guest Articles
Guest posting will not only get you free backlinks but will also help you reach new audiences. When you publish your articles on other relevant websites, your content will be displayed in front of new readers. This way you’re increasing both your brand awareness and online reputation by getting more exposure.
Writing guest articles will also create long-term relationships with other websites in your niche. When publishing a guest post ALWAYS leave links to your social media profiles. This way you won’t be able to lose readers that enjoyed your article and wish to read more. This is how many benefits you will get from implementing guest posts into your link-building strategy.
How to find blogs that accept guest posts
Google search is probably the best place to find blogs that are accepting contributors. You can type in [your keyword] + blogs that accept guest posts and manually filter out all the noise or can just use this cheat sheet and start contributing:
[ your keyword ] + become a contributor
[ your keyword ] + want to write for
[ your keyword ] + submit an article
[ your keyword ] + guest post by
[ your keyword ] + inurl:write-for-us
[ your keyword ] + become an author
[ your keyword ] + guest-posts
[ your keyword ] + bloggers wanted
[ your keyword ] + inurl:guest-post-guidelines
[ your keyword ] + contribute
Also, you can use your social media channels to search for other potential options. Twitter, for example, is good for guest blogging searches. Just type in “guest article”, “guest author, or “guest post” in the search. Then, scroll down and you will definitely come across relevant pages that you can contribute to because if they’re tweeting about guest posts on their websites, they are totally receiving them.
Blog and Forum Commenting
There are two types of people: the first ignore the comment section while the second one can’t skip it at all. It turns out that the other half is not that small, after all. Neil Patel proved with his experiment that 249 comments can potentially generate you $25000.
The point of this method is not about leaving lazy comments like “Great post”, but in your ability to bring value. For example, when you found a relevant blog post with a comments section, you have to make sure you’ve read the article itself and don’t just push their readers to go and read your content instead because your comment will rather be deleted (plus, that’s rude). I recommend you complement the author’s efforts instead and add missing information or tips that worked for you. Also, don’t skip other readers’ comments. You might be able to provide them with answers and bring them value as well.
When you feel that a comments box is not enough in order to answer another reader’s question, use this opportunity to write a summarized answer and leave a trigger to continue reading with a link on your blog.
Forums like Yahoo Answers and Google Groups are also good places for generating free backlinks and, what is even more important, traffic. I recommend you being creative and look for opportunities around you. Facebook and LinkedIn groups, Quora, Reddit, Youtube, niche social networks, and any other social channel you are able to use to your advantage.
It doesn’t really matter what link-building strategy you have chosen as long as it’s proving good results. We all know that SEO is a mix of strict rules you have to follow and a creative process of figuring out new ways and testing whether they might work for you.
Recently, we’ve conducted an interview with Milosz Krasinski about Modern Link Building Tactics. In that article, he shared a decade of his link-building experience and the perfect formula for building trustworthy relationships with media and editors.
I hope this article was beneficial for you and for your future backlinks. Leave a comment below if you want to read more in-depth studies about proven link-building strategies and successful tactics so I know what blog posts you’re more willing to read.