Link building is a critical part of SEO for your e-commerce brand. You need to be doing several things such as utilizing backlinks, analyzing your anchor text, and fixing broken links. You’ll also want to make sure spam sites aren’t part of your backlinking,g and you’ll want to do things like working with influencers. We’ll cover the best tools to use, a few tips, and things you need to watch out for as you navigate link building for your e-commerce business.
Building Your eCommerce SEO Through Backlinks
Backlinks are still very important and should be included in your SEO strategy. Google looks at backlinks as “votes”. Meaning, the more links you have to a page on your site the more popular the page is. As you grow in links (a.k.a votes) the more popular your pages become, which will only increase your page visibility on Google. When looking at building links you will want to work on getting links from numerous sources across the web to make your backlink portfolio look natural. Here is a quick list of sites to look into for your eCommerce link building strategy.
If you are an established business then we suggest you start by looking at your current backlinks to get an idea of what that looks like. This will give you an idea of what you already have and potential areas to look at to generate additional links to your site.
Review Your Back Links
Take the time to review what sites are pointing back to yours. You can use tools like Ahrefs (the biggest backlink index out there), SEMRush, Moz Link Explorer, and Majestic SEO to understand your current links. Each tool gives you a little different view but for this resource, we are going to show you how Ahrefs works since we get the most data from it.. ** Ahrefs is a paid tool so if you are serious about SEO, we suggest using this tool for link data. When using Ahrefs data you can tell if you have high-quality sites recommending your site or if you have spam sites that could potentially penalize you. You can run this report by using the Site Explorer tool. Simply input the domain or URL you want to review backlinks for and choose if you want the exact URL, prefix, the entire domain, or parts of the domain.
Submit and you will get a list of domains that link back to your site.
As you dig into the types of links that are coming back to the site you need to consider factors like anchor text being used, any new broken links, or a sudden drop of a lot of links and spammy sites linking back to you. I will cover some of these things below.
Anchor text being used
In Ahrefs you will be able to see which anchor texts are being used in the Anchors section under the overview section, not the backlink section.
When looking at this section, you want to make sure there is a wide variety of keywords instead of the overuse of one term or a phrase. The only exception to this rule is your Brand name or URL. In the case of Lizard Skins, they are getting anchor text links to the brand name or to lizardskins.com (and variations of the domain).
This looks natural like how users would link to a site. If your site has a lot of keyword anchor text links then you should look at ways to leverage the brand name and URL to make it more natural. In the case of Lizard Skins, if they were getting a lot of links with the anchor text such as handgrips, baseball grip tape, grip tape, batting gloves, etc. they would need to be concerned and look at ways to diversify their links. Identify broken backlinks Fixing broken links is low-hanging fruit. Navigating to the Backlinks tab in Ahrefs and selecting Broken will display the affected links.
The best strategy with broken links is to create a 301 redirect from the broken page to an active category, subcategory, blog page, etc. Make sure the link is redirecting to the most relevant page on your site.
Look for spam sites
Links from low-quality sites can negatively impact your website. Google may see spam links as being a part of a Private Blog Network or other black hat tactics. You can find these links by navigating to the Backlinks tab and sorting the results by Domain Rating from lowest to highest. Links noted as “N/A” and UR of 0 are low-quality links. Beyond that, you can also look for URLs with spam names. So, you will need to work with bloggers and other businesses to acquire backlinks. Here are a few link-building website opportunities:
- Resource Page Link Building
- Influencer Marketing
- Broken Link Outreach
Resource Page Link Building Resource pages can take form in several different ways. Some include industry blog posts, static pages, directory listings, and several more. You can find resource pages through the use of simple Google commands. Just type “inurl:resources + X” in the search engine.
After you have found a resource page that fits your business add the URL and contact it into a spreadsheet. After you have built a decent list of leads, you can perform email outreach.
Work With Influencers
Influencer marketing has become a staple in effective holistic marketing strategies. Working with influencers, and people within your industry that have a large following or have high domain authority can help you with brand visibility as well as SEO. We will specifically break down how you can use influencers to positively impact your SEO efforts. Instead of paying an influencer to promote your product on their social channels, you instead work with them to create a post with a high-quality backlink from their site to yours. This can be a blog post created to feature your product, or request a link to your product from an existing page on their site. The best thing you can do is work on your relationships with influencers. The more personal you are, the better outcomes you will yield in regards to SEO. How do you build a relationship with influencers?
- Comment on their blog and social media posts with genuine comments
- Recommend them to prospects
- Gift them free products to personally review
- Provide loyalty to those you work with
So now you know how to build meaningful relationships, but how do you find the right influencers? You can perform a Google command similar to, “[Topic] blogs/influencers.”
Focus on Broken Links
Fixing broken links is an easy and effective way to build links pointing back to your site. You can use Google Chrome extensions to help you identify any broken links that are invalid or pointing to pages that no longer exist.
Broken links will be highlighted in red. Once you identify the links you can begin outreach to those who published the article. You can reach out using the following template: “Hi [Name], I was on your website today and couldn’t help but notice one of the links was broken on this page: [URL] The broken link is pointing here: [URL] I have a resource that I think would be a great addition to your article. Check it out here: [URL] Thanks for being an industry leader providing exceptional advice. Best, [Name] Keep in mind cold outreach can be a tough game to play. You will likely have to send several hundred emails to get a few links pointing back to your site.
As you navigate link building for your e-commerce business keep in mind that it’s not a one-and-done exercise. It’s a process that you’ll have to continue as time goes by. So, if you think experts in this area would be helpful, our team at Stryde would love to help with your SEO. Schedule a free consultation with us today and let’s see what we can do for your business!
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Looking for more SEO tips to help you grow your e-commerce business? Check out these posts:
- Getting Started With SEO – How To Identify & Prioritize What To Optimize
- How To Do Keyword Research For An Ecommerce Business
- What Should Your Ecommerce Site Architecture & On Page Optimizations Look Like For Maximum SEO Value
- How To Tackle Technical SEO For Your Ecommerce Business
- Local SEO For Your Business That Sells Through Ecommerce & Retail Locations
- How To Measure Ecommerce SEO Success