Top 5 Ideas for Great Linkbait

The holy grail of SEO is to have large volumes of sites (including high authority pages) linking to your content. These natural links are gained when you produce something that people want to share. They share it and link to it and you see a huge increase in traffic, PageRank and authority. Guest blogging is a great way to build links and build relationships, but nothing beats creating content that goes viral.

In this post I look at 5 ideas for creating content that gains you loads of juicy, natural backlinks using some examples that have worked for us in the past.

Ideas for Great Linkbait |News Stories

If you’ve noticed something new in the SEO or Social Media world and nobody else has written about it, drop everything and write about it yourself. Like you, everyone will be looking for more information on anything new happening and will flock to Google to search. My first reaction to noticing Google’s new ‘personal search’ was to search in Google and read the first couple of posts that came up. If you are the first to write about something and can force your news story to the top of SERPs for relative queries then your page will be the one everyone reads first. Many people will then link to your page when sharing the story themselves. The main tip here is get there first. A lot of our traffic comes from news stories we’ve written.

Ideas for Great Linkbait |Infographics

While blog posts are quick to write and are often the best way to explain data, people prefer graphical data. Why sit and read a 1000 word blog post when you can get all the information in a minute from an attractive infographic? Use results from white papers and surveys to produce stunning graphics with new and exciting information. Allow people to use your infographic as long as they link back to your site and you’ll gain some great links. A lot of people will just take it without the link so some SEOs say infographics are hit and miss. However, if you make sure your brand is visible on the infographic it can also work as a great brand awareness tool. Don’t worry if your creative juices aren’t flowing – there are many design companies who will produce delightful infographics out of any data you give them.

Ideas for Great Linkbait |Resources

A lot of people stay clear of resources posts as they’re worried about the amount of outbound links. However, outbound links can be good and any lost link juice is more than made up by all the inbound links you’ll get from people sharing your resource page. One of Silicon Beach’s most popular blog posts is a list of Social Media tools. This has been shared all over the internet, often with a link to our site or to the post itself. Thanks to that the page has the same PageRank as our home page!

Ideas for Great Linkbait |Useful downloads

Nothing screams ‘share me’ as loud as useful, downloadable content. Whether it is a Photoshop template, an ebook, a glossary or a comprehensive guide. Again using Silicon Beach as an example, we produced a Photoshop template for designing custom Google+ profiles. To this day it remains one of our most popular posts, with a surge in traffic every time G+ has an update. We produced it the day Google+ rolled out in 2011 and every time somebody wants to customise their profile page then end up on our site and download the template. The nicer ones then link to our site and tell their friends how great the download it!

Ideas for Great Linkbait |Write something controversial

Really want to get people talking? Take a view on things, or write something that others will have a view on. People will write posts that argue against you and defend you. Last example from Silicon Beach I promise! We wrote a summary of a controversial SEO presentation at BrightonSEO in 2011. Matt Gemmell then wrote a blog post ‘SEO for Non-dicks’ about how controversial the SEO strategy was was, taking an extreme side of the argument. This argument was then bandied around the internet and even appeared on .Net magazine’s website. It may have been Matt’s post that got most of the exposure but he linked to us and many of the further articles (including the .net post) also linked to us. Great linkbait!

Hopefully you can take these ideas away and go and create your own quality, shareable content and end up with some fantastic links.

Image by HubSpot on Flickr.

Guest Blogger:  As well as our SEO course in the heart of Brighton, Silicon Beach Training also run a popular Social Media Training course. The two courses go hand in hand and we recommend booking them together as social sharing now has a huge effect on SEO!