STEP 3: REACH OUT
The final step in your SEO Plan is all about links!
The first thing you need to understand here is the difference between a Backlink and an Inbound Link:
- Backlinks or External Links are any link from an external website (any website that isn’t your own) to a page on your site. Backlinks are vital to improving your Off-Page SEO. Basically the more links Google finds ANYWHERE on the internet which link to you the higher you will be ranked
- Inbound Links or Internal Links are hyperlinks you make on one page of your website to another, like linking an exhibition to the box office. Inbound Links are essential when working on your On-Page SEO.
Basically, what you need to know is that links are to SEO as downloads are to music charts! The more that are out there to higher you will rank in the top 40!
Inbound links are crazy simple both to make and maintain within your website.
If you run a blog, you can create links within the post to other similar posts or products and services pages or simply to a Contact Us page. When adding links to your blog posts 3-5 is generally a good goal to aim for whether these are inbound or outbound.
Obviously, the absolute ideal is to link within your site to keep traffic flowing through your website. If you are linking away from your site, in a perfect world somewhere on that page there is a link back to you.
When citing references and articles linking within your site is not always possible, so make sure you set the links to open in tabs as opposed to in the same window. That way your site remains open in the browser. After all, you don’t want to drive people away from your site, when they are checking out your sources.
What if you don’t run a blog?
There are loads of places you can link to:
- Most websites have some kind of access to Contact or FAQ to make it easier to ask questions and get in touch.
- Product pages can link to other product pages (check out our online store section in the previous SEO Post)
- Pictures or videos could lead to galleries
- Show or exhibition information can lead to box office/ticket purchasing or opening times
The possibilities are as endless as your imagination!
Be sure to think about your call to action button here too! This will be a link to the place you want to draw your audience to the most. Learn more about your call to action button here.
You may think you have little control over the number of backlinks that drive traffic to your site. You would be wrong! There’s loads of stuff you can do online to help.
First and foremost, make sure you add your business details to Google! They have a 90% monopoly of the search engine market so you’ll want to focus on driving up your ranking primarily through them when developing your SEO Plan. Of course you can add your information to other Search Engine platforms to but if you’re limited for time Google should be your priority.
FUN FACT: It used to be that you would rank higher if your business had a Google+ account until Google realised they were flogging a dead horse with that particular social media avenue and shut it down. It took over YouTube which is now Google’s main social media platform.
It is still very much the case that if you use their products and services you will rank higher in their search. It may not be fair, but that’s corporative business for you.
Links from your social media accounts to your website are an excellent contribution to your backlinks. Generally the more reputable and sizeable the company, the more weight your backlinks will hold coming from that source. The Big Five Social Media Apps are generally considered to be:
Other popular Social Media Platforms that shouldn’t be forgotten are:
Whatever platforms you use to promote your website (and be sure to use the ones which compliment your business best) all will help with your Off-Site SEO.
It’s worth tracking your social media analytics to work out what posts perform best. If you can encourage reposts, retweets, regrams… of links to your site which become additional backlinks.
You will also want to consider uploading your details to prevalent listing sites. Does your business rely heavily on footfall from the tourism industry? Upload your company details to TripAdvisor. Perhaps you’re a children’s theatre company? Get it on MumsNet & NetMums. Want to make people in the local area aware of an exhibition? Upload it to Facebook Events.
It is also worth noting that majority of Local Councils in the UK have their own website for tourism and promotion in their local area. Uploading to sites like this can be a great way of using your time to specifically target the right market and audience for your business.
If you want to sell merchandise for your store you could always sell through an external site like Etsy or Amazon to increase those backlinks. It’s the same if you’re selling tickets, maybe run some through Eventbrite or TicketMaster.
We mentioned earlier when coming up with Inspiration for Content you may consider employing a Guest Blogger or Vlogger. When doing this ensure that your guest shares your information on their website and social media platforms too!
It also works when people link to you so if you do any collabs with other companies or simply mention them in a blog post. Ask them to share your details on their social media and websites. Remember the Arts Industry is all about collaboration and if you don’t ask you don’t get.
If you find a backlink on a website you weren’t expecting, then it is common courtesy to return the favour and give them a shout out on your social and website as well! Especially if they’re singing your praises with a great review.
And there you have it!
Be sure to stay on top of the curve with new techniques for SEO that are coming out – the internet is constantly changing and this means that Google (and other search engines) will have to keep up to date with these trends and alter the algorithms and methods they use to rank you.
SEO is a long game! You won’t see results straight away. You will be lucky if you see the impact your efforts in 12 months but stick at it all the time and it will work!!!
Any questions or want use to create an SEO plan for you? Contact us or leave a message in the comments.