What is B2B Marketing? Definitions, Strategies, and More
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Anyone who has done any amount of successful SEO work will tell you that one of the cornerstones to ranking well in the search engines is building links to your website. Of course, the majority of SEO practitioners believe this is the single hardest task and it doesn’t get any easier for ecommerce sites. Ecommerce sites are unique from other websites because there is no getting around commercial site status; since you sell a product you are a commercial site. The commercial nature immediately adds a barrier of difficulty in obtaining quality links to your site unless you know where to look. Here are a few places you can start your link building campaign.
Most businesses are either a part of the Better Business Bureau, Chamber of Commerce or similar local business association. This is the first place to look for a link since these associations usually list the members and getting a link to your site from your member listing is usually acceptable. After you’ve done that look into regulatory bodies for your industry, industry associations, regular customers and business partnerships.
Next stop should be any nonprofit organizations you support, sponsor or are a member of as a business or personally. If you have a small number of employees (50 or less) then you can find out what charities your employees contribute to either through volunteering or contributions. Usually by talking to someone you have a relationship with already at the organization you can work out a way to get a link from the charity site to your site. In the event you run into barriers ask about sponsoring an upcoming event or fundraiser; this usually will get you a link without asking and you can do a press release for your business about the fundraising event. Be sure to use a PR service that allows a link back to your site from the press release for more great links, PR Web is one company that offers such services.
Colleges and universities are generally thought of to be trustworthy which means a link from them can greatly help your ranking efforts. You can start by contacting the Alumni division to see about getting a link from your Alma Mater. Another option is to work with the student services division either to provide an internship opportunity, posting a job listing , sponsor a student event or sign up for their career fair.
I want to preface that if you plan on using Social Media you need to be responsible by always bringing value to the conversation and not spamming. Make sure you list your website’s URL in all of your profiles in the appropriate location. Next join groups, make friends or favorites and leave comments so that you are an active contributing member. Make no mistake that social media link building is a time consuming task and must be done ongoing to have a lasting affect. Should you submit your own content make sure it is the very best you can produce.
The blogosphere grows everyday which means the opportunity for links is also continually growing. Try to find 3-5 blogs in your industry or niche that provide value to your customers and start paying attention. Start leaving a comment after posts but only when you can add to the conversation in the post or contribute to another comment. It pays to be one of the first people to comment also because people generally read the first couple of comments, not the last ones. It is a good idea to have your own blog assuming you can add content on a regular basis. Invite the bloggers in your industry to do a guest blog post on your blog, offer to be a guest blogger on their blog or both. Assuming one of the offers is accepted you will almost always get a link from the blogger.
One of the great keys to successful link building is to make the process very easy for the person you want a link from whether it is a business or individual. You can make it easy by providing the exact html needed to add the link you want with the keywords you want as the link text. Also check to see if they link to outside sites somewhere on their site already; if so point this out in your link request with a URL to the current links. Remember that not everyone will say yes; expect some rejection but don’t let it get you down. Finally do not be afraid to pick up the phone and call instead of emailing. Leveraging your existing contacts and relationships will greatly aide your link building campaign.
Miva offers a flexible and adaptable ecommerce platform that evolves with businesses and allows them to drive sales, maximize average order value, cut overhead costs, and increase revenue. Miva has been helping businesses realize their ecommerce potential for over 20 years and empowering retail, wholesale, and direct-to-consumer sellers across all industries to transform their business through ecommerce.