Real-world link building case studies - Patrick Altoft at SearchLove London 2011

Posted by Paul Rogers on 26 October 2011

Patrick Altoft is the owner of Blogstorm and Director of Search at Branded3, a digital marketing agency based in Leeds.

This presentation was my favourite of the event, as it was solely focused on link building and contained hundreds of great tips that were completely actionable.

I also found the case studies and examples that Patrick discussed very interesting.

Key takeaways from this presentation:

  • Goal: “Create just enough links to rank #1 without putting clients at risk”
  • Generally, the biggest keywords are dominated by those who are most aggressive with link building
  • Don't start link building before you improve the website
  • Get the clients doing stuff to improve their long-tail traffic
  • Long tail will facilitate for the time it takes to rank for your main keywords
  • In Google Analytics filter traffic for keywords containing “who” “what” “why” “how” etc
  • Then write content to rank for these phrases
  • Look at matched search query report in GA Adwords data – get more long tail opportunities – email this to content writers as a list of things to write about
  • Tip: Vary your anchor text - not just exact match anchor text
  • Google suggest and keyword tool – use this to find anchor text suggestions
  • Never have link builders write content
  • Get a list of sites that will accept guest content together
  • Every article needs to look natural – with natural anchor text etc
  • Infographics very difficult – rarely get good links (high cost per link)
  • Stumbleupon – good for finding places to get your infographic placed
  • Need to get in touch with people who are publishing infographics
  • Scrapers make up for nofollow links on Twitter
  • Enough tweets to site = loads of links from scrapers
  • WP Plugins mean tweets are sitewide – get quick promotion and links on sites
  • Social trust enabled to rank for competitive terms without links
  • Blogs have to credit quotes – illegal not to do this
  • Go to bloggers and offer them quotes to get links
  • Sponsor a weekly or monthly column to get links
  • Don't just give content way – give loads of different things away
  • Offer images to bloggers – have a section on your website dedicated
  • Exact match domains – bit risky but your competitors will do it
  • Wordpress widgets – dynamically update via xml
  • When a blog publishes your plugin/widget you can change the links
  • Get a team of developers to build production-ready tools
  • Create a searchable database of links you've got
  • Link building more about systems and processes than fancy ideas
  • Create a link crawler
  • Very few links are worth more than £250 (remember time = money too)
  • Have a process for determining value of link
  • Panda recovery is possible
  • Get rid of duplicate content – every word!!
  • Improve the trust of your site by getting links to blog pages
  • If your site is trusted – get links straight to product pages
  • Different links from different pages = always great links

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