The 10 Best SEO Link Building Strategies for 2021

A team of office workers fist bumps after an SEO link building strategy meeting
  • James Notaris

    CPA, ESQ, Legal Editor

  • Steve Longo

    Digital Marketer

    In Brief:

  • Link building remains a key component of SEO in 2021 and beyond.

  • As with SEO as a whole, the nature of link building has changed considerably in recent years. 

  • Below, we explore the 10 best SEO link building strategies for 2021!

For all of the talk about how SEO is changing and will continue to evolve in the coming years, one thing is constant: links. 

As links remain one of the primary ranking factors for search engines like Google, implementing an effective SEO link building strategy has never been more important. Links remain a key component of any successful SEO campaign, meaning that you need a plan for how to build them in 2021 and beyond. 

However, like SEO in general, what worked a few years ago won’t necessarily work today! That’s why it’s so important to stay at the forefront of link building for SEO. To that end, here’s a look at some of the 10 best SEO link building strategies for 2021, plus a primer on what link building is and why it’s so important for SEO. Let’s take a closer look here!

What is Link Building?

Link building is the process of creating one-way links, known as backlinks, towards a website with the ultimate goal of boosting it’s visibility in search engines like Google. SEO link building strategies include guest posting, broken link building, content marketing, social media marketing, and more. 

Why is Link Building Important?

Link building is important because links themselves are a key component of SEO. 

Back when search engines were relatively new, Google pioneered the usage of backlinks as a way to gauge a site’s quality. The more people linked to a web page, the more authority and trust it has in the eyes of Google. These positive signals, in turn, meant that the page should rank higher in SERPs, as more people trusted its content. 

Even today, links remain one of the top SEO ranking factors for Google and constitute a major part of offsite SEO

Mobile phone with the word "link" on its screen for link building SEO

SEO Link Building Strategies for 2021

Link building, much like SEO as a whole, has evolved dramatically over the years. Gone are the days of black hat SEO practices like paid links, link farms, and private blog networks… all of which is great for users!

Instead, modern link building must adhere to white hat SEO practices and be done carefully in order to avoid any punishing Google penalties that could cripple your website. 

With that in mind, here’s a detailed look at some of the best link building strategies for 2021!

1. Guest Posting

Guest posting has been declared dead as an SEO strategy countless times, but the fact of the matter is that it’s still alive and well!

Nowadays, you simply have to go about it smarter than in years past. Rather than hunting around for random blogs to do link exchanges with, digital marketers need to focus on building working relationships with relevant blogs and sites, producing quality content, and pitching them with the angle of how their content can genuinely benefit their audience. 

By focusing on quality content, relevant outreach, and avoiding excessive link exchanges, guest posting can still be a very effective way to boost your SEO!

2. Broken Link Building

Broken link building is a simple yet effective way to score some easy SEO wins with regards to link building. 

Simply enter a competitor’s website into a digital marketing tool like Ahrefs or SEMRush and filter for links with 404 codes, indicating that they’re broken. Then, do outreach to the sites with broken links, suggesting a relevant, quality piece of your own content instead. 

This is a proven and effective method for link building, as no webmaster wants broken links on their site, as they degrade the user experience. Give it a try and see how well it works for you!

3. Skyscraper Technique 

The skyscraper technique, often mentioned by SEOs but little understood, has been around for years as a variation of guest posting. 

The process behind it is actually pretty simple: research and find linkable content that’s popular among readers, create a better version of it, and pitch your new content to relevant sites you feel may be receptive to it. 

Though fairly time-consuming and research-intensive, the skyscraper technique is yet another proven SEO link building strategy to keep in mind for 2021.

4. Directory Submissions and Resource Pages 

Submitting your website to online directories can still be an effective link building strategy, but just make sure that the directory has a strong domain authority and a do-follow linking police in order to maximize the SEO benefits. Local and  relevant niche directories often work well for link building too. 

Likewise, do-follow resource page links are also effective in many cases and can boost your SEO efforts with a simple outreach email or website submission to them.

5. Blog and Forum Commenting

Commenting on blogs and forums with links to your site can be a relatively effective link building technique, but it’s very important to follow white hat SEO guidelines when doing it. 

Never spam blogs and forums and always try to target relevant sites and create content that works in the links as naturally as possible. This way, the backlinks to your site appear natural and don’t turn off readers by coming off as a blatant sales pitch for your site.

6. Testimonials and Interviews

Testimonials and interviews are a win-win all around. 

Try contacting a company you’re interested in and offering to write a testimonial about their product or service, or an influencer in a relevant industry for an interview request. The company or person gets free PR while you get a new backlink and increased traffic.

7. Competitor Analysis

Replicating a competitor’s backlink profile is a simple yet effective way to boost your SEO. 

Just plug in a competitor’s website into a tool like SEMRush or Ahrefs and take a look at their backlinks. Then, do some email outreach to the sites linking to them to pitch them any relevant, useful content or ask to be on any resources pages they might have. Ideally, you should target the most relevant sites with high domain authority first using this technique.

8. Infographics

Shareable, visual, and informative, infographics are a great way to convey stats and important information in a fun way. They’re also great for building links! 

Try making a few of them to explain concepts or show statistics to your audience as part of your SEO link building strategy. They make especially great social media posts too.

9. Social Media Marketing 

Utilizing social media is a great way to expand your brand reach, engage with new audiences, and build links. 

Write a great new blog post? Put it on social media! Doing so is a great way to make your content more shareable and help it reach users who might’ve missed it otherwise.

10. Press Releases

Finally, never underestimate the power of a good press release as an effective SEO link building strategy!

If you have something relevant and newsworthy, create and distribute a well-optimized press release for it. Be careful to avoid link stuffing and creating a press release just for the sake of it, as these will turn your target audiences off. Instead, a newsworthy press release with some well-placed backlinks can be a great way to both help your website reach new audiences and build links. 

Do Link Building the Right Way for Success in 2021 and Beyond!

Links, alongside content, remain the most important SEO ranking factor for 2021. Having the right SEO link building strategy in place is key if you hope to boost your site’s traffic and rankings. By using the above strategies and adapting to the changing nature of link building, you and your team can ensure that your SEO campaign is primed for success in 2021!


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