How To Build Backlinks As A Small Business In 2017

Rather than thinking about how to “get backlinks” you need to be thinking about how to “earn backlinks”.    Why would someone link to your business?  Why would someone talk about your business or share it with someone else?

The chances are, that if you are a small business with a 5 or 6 page website, then at the moment there isn’t much reason for anyone to do any of these things.

And that’s where you need to start.

To build backlinks in 2017 for your small business you need to start by improving the content on your website.  Take a step back, go to your website and ask yourself – what value am I providing here?

You can start by looking at these three areas;


The graphic design stakes are higher than they have ever been before.  With an increase in graphic design technologies like Canva, as well as an abundance of high quality stock photo websites, competition has increased.  Consumers also expect a visually pleasing experience when they visit your website.  They will quickly be put off by generic images and poor branding, citing it as unprofessional.


Bland, boring copy isn’t going to get you very far either.  If your readers need to splash cold water on their face in order to make it to the end of your landing page then you’re in trouble.  Your brand’s personality should come across in every sentence, don’t waste the opportunity to impress potential clients!


If your visitors can’t navigate your site.  If you have annoying popups, too much advertising or too much distraction, the chances are they aren’t going to hang around.  Your site needs to be easy to navigate and encourage visitors to stick around for more than 30 seconds.

Set Up A Blog To Attract Backlinks

If you don’t already have one, then starting a blog is a great way to increase the content on your site without having it affect the usability of your core website.  Just make sure your blog is linked in the navigation and is a subdirectory of your main domain i.e.

This is important because you don’t want your visitors to have to leave your website in order to read your blog. Top domain registrars like Free Parking allow subdirectories and make it easy for you to set up one. Get started with Free Parking here

Create Valuable Content

So, once you have audited the primary content on your website.  You’re happy with the visuals and the messaging, and you’ve set up a blog – you are ready to start creating some highly valuable, epic content.

What is already working in your space?

The first step is always research.  You need to find out what content has already been created in your niche.  And you need to find out what has worked the best! That doesn’t mean that you can’t add your own ideas and creativity.  But it does mean that you should avoid starting from scratch and creating content in a vacuum.

Earning links is a challenging thing to do and your content is going to need to knock the socks off your audience.

To find out what is already working in your space go to Buzzsumo and enter in a keyword relating to your business or an area of your business.

Take that content and make it better!

Backlink Analysis

Once you have your piece of content and you are confident that it’s better than any piece of content in your space – it’s time to find some links! If you’ve done your job and worked hard up to this point then this shouldn’t be too challenging.

Take the piece of content which you found on Buzzsumo earlier in the process and put it into a backlink analyser like Opensiteexplorer.

Select “show only links to this page”.

Download the list of backlinks that this piece of content gained.  Delete any websites which have a domain authority lower than 30 and higher than 80.  This will get rid of lower quality websites, and Blogspot or WordPress hosted sites. 
Find Contact Details

You should now have a list of between 20 – 50 websites which are very targeted prospects for your piece of epic content.  You’ll need to go through this list and find the contact details for each website.   To make life easier download “Hunter” from Google Chrome Store.  This chrome add on will search the website for you and scrap the email addresses it finds into the tool.  This speeds up the process. Just be careful with the details it finds, it is pretty good but not 100% accurate.

Pitch  Pitch Pitch!

Usually, if you were cold pitching to people you had never met, there would be some warming up first.  But the great thing about this method is that you can make this email super personalised.  You know that each blogger has already written about the topic and linked to the old content which you have now improved.

Mention this in your email!

It shows that you know a little bit about the blogger and their interests, they don’t need to know that you have a list of 50 other people!

The trick when pitching is to make each person feel unique even if you have emailing a ton of people with pretty much the same template email.


Run your link building campaign in a specific sprint of time.  A good amount of time is 4 weeks from completion of the content to reaching out and getting responses.  After this 4 weeks is up stop & analyse your results.  Look at:

Number Of People You Emailed

Number Of Responses

Number Of Links

Track your response rate – Prospects you emailed divided by responses.

And your link rate – Prospects who responded divided by people who linked.

Use your critical thinking to break down why you think you got each rate, and whether it is worth carrying on, improving your content, or creating some new content.  These are metrics you can track each time you run a link building campaign to see how you are doing.


About the author /

Christopher Washington

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