5 Ways for Small Businesses to Successfully Build Links

As a little business, it can be challenging trying to compete with the big businesses and their multi-million £ budgets.  The great thing about the internet, and Google’s organic results – there’s more of a level playing field than on the High Street.

High Street

(Image courtesy of Hometown Unicorn)

Sure, you may not be able to compete with their paid advertising campaigns.  You may not even be able to attract the press attention that they can.  But there are still several ways to make a success online and make a success of your business.

Here are five ways you can build links and generate traffic to your website to help build your brand:

Local Businesses, Individuals and Newspapers

Have you worked with any local charities, done any business with local companies, helped a local individual?  If you’ve done anything significant with these, anything memorable, any special events.  If you have a contact at these businesses or charities, give them a call or take them out for a lunch and use your persuasion techniques to get a link from their website.  Often it doesn’t take much persuasion, on occasions simply asking for a link they will give you what you want.

Have you been featured in your local newspaper?  Maybe you are hosting a local event, have a news story you can send them, want to give an interview to raise a point?  Local newspapers are always on the lookout for stories – find something newsworthy to get yourself in print.  Then when your article is live on the web version, contact the newspaper to persuade them to hyperlink the first mention of your brand name to your website.

Sponsor a Charity

Charities often gain links from the top websites – think of news articles linking to them etc.  So in terms of building a link for Google rankings, they’re certainly a reputable source.  On top of that, receiving a link from a charity can only make a positive reflection on your business, right?

If you’ve got the funds to sponsor them, make sure they link back to you.  Sponsoring them may even be a way to get in a local newspaper itself.  On top of that, you’re supporting a cause and everybody loves that.  Perhaps be sure to sponsor a charity for the cause more than the linkthough – to be ethical.

Appeal to a Group/Society

Every company in the world has something unique about it and if your company appeals to a niche group, society or subculture, call it what you will, then there’s something you can tap into.  After all, appealing to everybody isn’t going to happen unless you produce toilet roll.

Perhaps design your content around them, create offers for them and even approach them with what you’re looking for from them.  Blogger Outreach can be very successful tactic here.

Host an Event

Hosting an event gives you the opportunity for numerous links.  Perhaps it’s newsworthy and worth inviting a journalist from a local newspaper down.  Perhaps you want to welcome representatives from that charity you sponsored – and there’s an opportunity for them to write about it on their website/news feed.  Local bloggers, or that group you’re appealing to, may be invited with the potential of them writing a report of, or mentioning it on their own websites and blogs.

Sites such as Meetup and Event Brite can be used to spread attention of your event and find more people to invite.  Create a Facebook Event to make it more widespread.  Google+ has the same feature.

Contribute to other organisations

In most industries there are a few blogs or bloggers that are deemed to be the industry leaders.  You may be below these on the food chain for now, but some of these will give you the opportunity to expand your reach by contributing to their website.

As a Digital Marketer myself, I expand my reach by regularly contributing to other websites.  I have no shame in them being bigger companies than the one I work for.  Instead, we work together to both utilise my knowledge for their benefits, and utilise their following for my growth.  You can do the same in almost any industry.  Someone or some company out there is blogging about your industry.  You just need to charm them into letting you contribute.

If you’re a small business and need help with raising your profile online, get in touch with us, call 01525 715520

Barrie Smith

Barrie is a very experienced marketer, with notable successful campaigns in the gambling, e-commerce, travel and many other industries.

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4 Comments

  1. Hi Barrie,
    I make video content and have made some free for a local charity, but they tend to just use YouTube rather than put the video on their site. I have a link to my site from the bottom of the “about” text that goes with the video. Is there any real SEO value to that link from YouTube?
    Here’s an example: http://youtu.be/_LiqJ23iwiU
    Cheers,
    Mike

    (PS – shame you don’t host that Meetup group any more, they were good nights!)

  2. Hi Barrie, you’ve listed 5 excellent tips here, the “host an event” strategy was new to me.

  3. Hi Mike,

    Thank you for your comment.

    In terms of “SEO value” and boosting your ranking in Google – no, the http://www.whitelodgecentre.co.uk link in your video is not getting any benefit.

    However, there’s a good chance that the people that click that link after watching the video are interested in the company or services you may have to offer – therefore you are probably sending good quality traffic through.

    Regards,

    Barrie

    (PS – I think I need to start speaking at events now!)

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