16 Aug When and How to Outsource Your Link Building
Article contributed by digital marketing servicesYou wouldn’t ask a stranger to manage your friendships or your personal relationships, would you? Probably not. And that’s exactly why many marketers don’t like the idea of outsourcing link building.
As we all know, one of the primary components of a successful link building campaign is forming, nurturing, and maintaining relationships with blog owners. It’s a sensitive area that many prefer to handle themselves. Of course, on top of the relationship side of things, there’s also the technical aspects to consider; unless an outsourcing agency uses good link building practices, you could be penalized.
But believe it or not, under the right circumstances, there are actually many advantages of outsourcing. ‘Outsourcing’ isn’t quite the 4-letter word that marketers think it is. In fact, when working with the right agency, you could actually save money, save time, and benefit from borrowing someone else’s expertise. Also, if you’re thinking of branching out into other forms of digital marketing, the opportunities, support, and guidance are there to help you get started with new campaigns. But is outsourcing right for you?
When to Outsource Link Building
Although it’s certainly not ‘popular’ in the traditional sense, link building is actually one of the most commonly outsourced SEO tasks, coming just behind content creation and citation cleanup.
It’s estimated that around 15% of marketers outsource link building. The success of outsourcing will depend on the circumstances of the business. In many cases, the following businesses will fare best:
- Small Businesses: The majority of agencies that offer link acquisition and link building services work with small to medium-sized businesses. That’s because small businesses may not always have the available internal resources to successfully manage a full link building campaign.
- Young Businesses: Rapid improvement in online visibility is often one of the most important priorities for young businesses. However, these startup enterprises are typically more likely to be new to link building, and may not have the right skill sets available to them to succeed.
- Growing Businesses: As businesses continue to grow and develop, they will often look to scale their campaigns to meet their evolving needs. Growing businesses may benefit from outsourcing as they begin to scale up, providing them with temporary marketing support as they develop.
So we can clearly see that there are some circumstances where outsourcing link building can be beneficial. However, there is one very important aspect that is it essential for businesses to remember: if you’re just looking to save yourself some time, then outsourcing probably isn’t the best option for you.
Outsourcing is not as simple or straightforward as it sounds. In choosing the wrong agency for you, you could actually hinder your SEO campaign, not help it. What many don’t realize is that there is some time and effort involved in selecting the right outsourcing agency and maximizing your chances of success.
How to Outsource Link Building
If you’ve decided that you’d benefit from outsourcing link building, then the next question is: How? Finding the right agency may not always be easy, but it’s certainly not impossible. In fact, you can make the process easier by asking prospective agencies questions that give an insight into their processes:
Where Are You Published?
It’s clear that not all links are created equal, and there are many factors that can affect the quality of backlinks. One of the most important factors is domain authority. Google’s ranking algorithms place more value on links placed on high authority websites than it does on sites that could be considered a little ‘spammy’. Ideally, agencies should be publishing content on a range of high-quality websites.
Can You Provide a Link to Some Content?
It’s definitely worth having a read through some content samples that have been generated by the agency, and doing your own research to find more published posts. Do you find the content to be relevant and engaging, or does it look more like it’s been written purely for SEO purposes? Also keep an eye out for black hat SEO techniques, such as keyword stuffing and duplicate content that’s been ‘spun’.
What Can You Do For Us?
Be very wary of any agency that promises a first position ranking. While a first place rank can happen, it’s something that can never be guaranteed. That’s because there are some factors that are outside of our control that can have an impact on ranking. Spam links on referral domains, for example, are taken into account by Google. Don’t fall for false promises. Instead, look for an agency that keeps things realistic.
In addition to asking these questions, there is one more way to get a glimpse into an agency’s expertise: Look at their own SEO! It’s such a simple observation, yet it’s something that many overlook. If an agency doesn’t have a great online presence, and if their own link building leaves a lot to be desired, then that’s a major red flag. They should be able to do for themselves what they say they can to do for their clients.
Tips for Outsource Success
Getting the ‘when’ and the ‘how’ right are just two aspects that can help to ensure the success of an outsourced link building campaign. Here are a few extra tips to help you derive value from your efforts:
- Be clear about your expectations and communicate these clearly with the agency
- Keep in touch regularly throughout the campaign and ask to be kept up-to-date
- Try to secure a short-term contract initially until you are sure you wish to continue
- Stay involved; learn about link building so you can implement an in-house team in future
- Continually measure success; monitor backlinks and keep an eye on traffic and conversions
Should I Outsource My Link Building?
If there is a choice between not partaking in a link building campaign and outsourcing link building, outsourcing should always be chosen. This is especially true for businesses looking to improve online visibility and expand their reach. Yes, finding the right agency can take some time and effort, but it’s worth it. After all, link building is one of the oldest and most effective forms of digital promotion.
Source: Neil Patel
Experts claim that link building is critical to success, with a direct correlation between number of external backlinks and Google’s highest ranked pages. While outsourcing isn’t always seen as the ‘best’ option, there’s no point in cutting off your nose to spite your face. If you don’t have the skills, the resources, or the know-how to benefit from link building, then ask for help! It couldn’t be easier.
Author: Josip Mlinarić
Josip Mlinaric is e-mail marketing and outreach specialist at Point Visible, a marketing agency providing link building and digital marketing services. He likes to say he has a simple and calm mindset in his approach towards life in general and likes to relax with experimenting in the kitchen or just chilling listening to music.