It's increasingly difficult getting noticed online – that makes getting links even harder.
It's important to take a hard look at your site and marketing strategies to determine what can be improved.
Many think their site offers something unique. After all, everyone thinks their baby is the cutest.
Honestly, most sites aren't unique. The content (including tools, videos, etc) has already been published countless times on other sites. Different wording normally doesn't add value.
Senior Google Engineer Matt Cutts in a recent interview said:
“Those other sites are not bringing additional value. While they’re not duplicates they bring nothing new to the table. It’s not that there’s anything wrong with what these people have done, but they should not expect this type of content to rank.”
What Makes Your Site Different?
Start by making a list of what makes your site unique. Then ask why someone would link to your site, and not a competitor.
Next, ask what type of content would one of your employees take valuable time out of their day to link to. Is this the type of content you're producing?
When I speak of content, I'm not talking about just written content. It could be anything from videos, tools, mobile apps, cartoons, or even a contest.
Some are probably wondering how all that “OK” content currently has top rankings, and continues to acquire links. Often it's just effective content marketing.
Once the page ranks it naturally gets more links since it receive more traffic and exposure. It feeds upon itself. It's a phenomen known as being "filthy linking rich."
Push Your Marketing Further
Another reason people don't link to your site is due to limited marketing and outreach. If people aren't aware of your content how can you expect them to link to it?
Take this example. You're an online retailer running a contest. You've done the basics such as promoting it on your blog, newsletter, mailing list, and social media.
Now go a step further. Ask yourself where else can you can promote the contest.
Forget about link building. Forget about search engines. Approach this from a purely marketing and public relations perspective.
Other marketing avenues could be as simple as paying other sites to promote the contest (within Google linking guidelines of course), partnerships, or a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign.
More options include everything from guerrilla marketing to sponsoring a podcast. It all depends on your audience, and needs.
Take 30 minutes today, and make that list of what's unique about your site. What does it bring to the web that's new and valuable? Then figure out ways to expand the marketing of that content.
Meet Your Favorite Search Engine Watch Contributors
Many of SEW's leading expert contributors will be at ClickZ Live, the new online and digital marketing event kicking off in New York (March 31-April 3). Hear from the likes of: Thom Craver, Josh Braaten, Lisa Barone, Simon Heseltine, Josh McCoy, Lisa Raehsler, Greg Jarboe, Dan Cristo, Joseph Kerschbaum, John Gagnon, Eric Enge and more!