You may have heard about Google’s Penguin Update… Only this name chills the blood of many SEOs. This was an update aiming at fighting bad linking techniques. You’ll probably ask me then what you can still do to get safe links to your website. Here is my answer:

10 ways to get backlinks in 2012

Get social

This is my main advise and by far the most important one… but you can still read the next ones anyway. 🙂
Being active on social networks has many advantages:

  • It’s humanizing your company.
  • You are able to exchange directly with your customers & prospects.
  • You can connect with them in a global way but also by segments.

What matters to us today are the links to your site and you can see things this way: Each time you tweet or post a status with a link to your website, this one will appear on a highly trusted website, every retweets & shares amplify it…
Social bookmarks are a good complement to networks, their main goal is to make quality content (and then links) accessible to the most, use them.
You can consider adding social sharing buttons to your website, it makes it easier for your readers to share your content.

Guest blogging

Guest blogging means writing an article and publishing it on a third-party blog. You may wonder why you would do such a thing… it’s sometimes hard enough to write your own content, it’s not to give it then. Here are two reasons: Exposure & Authority.
Of course you will tend to choose a blog that has a bigger audience than yours, your article will then get greater exposure than on your own website.
You will appear as the author of the article, it’s perfect to gain in authority in your field.
In the author box (generally below your article), you may add a few lines explaining who you are with one or two links of your choice.

Use Maps & local directories

I’m talking more local here but it does not matter much and it’s always good to have your business listed on different maps & places even if you target a wider audience.
The two main local directories are Google Places & Bing Business Portal but you can find many “secondary websites” to add to your list.

Press Releases & Article Marketing

These methods are famous and have been overused by many marketers, it’s the reason why they have been affected by the update quoted above… But they are far from being obsolete and you can still use them cleverly. A quality press release shared on some chosen websites is an important step to gain exposure on the net.
A good way to find the best press releases services is to search them on Google I suppose so that your list will stay updated in case of big change.
If you don’t want to search, consider this list:

  • news.prlog.org
  • free-press-release.com
  • briefingwire.com
  • release-news.com
  • onlineprnews.com
  • pressabout.us

Quality matters way more that quantity and it’s better to share your piece of content on 5 or 10 high-standard services than on 200+ average or bad ones.

Article Marketing is very similar to guest blogging, you’ll just publish on a directory, not on a blog. Quality is important here also!
Here are the ones I would consider in priority, keep in mind that you need to give a unique article for each in case you want to publish on many of them:

  • ehow.com
  • squidoo.com
  • hubpages.com
  • examiner.com
  • ezinearticles.com
  • articlesbase.com
  • buzzle.com
  • goarticles.com
  • amazines.com

Make videos

Videos are a wonderful way to get quality & relevant links to your website and the good thing is that you can make videos about anything. Have them hosted in at least one “big” video hosting service like Youtube, Vimeo & Dailymotion and add a link to your page on the same topic on your website. The link will appear on a trusted website and on a page about similar content, it’s all good.
I recently discovered Hey!Spread that I did not try yet but it looks like a very promising service to add your videos to many sharing websites in a few clicks.

Create sideshows and or eBooks

There are big chances that you have at least once ended up on Slideshare or Scribd. to read a summary of a speech, a training… They are websites that help you to share slides, they’re easy to use and once again you can get some links from them. If your topic are attractive, your documents can get a very large audience and get shared in their embed version on many websites.
Same for PDF files and other kind of eBooks, they are perfect if you want to share a larger piece of content.

Although they are not passing link juice, this kind of links is good for visitors and they help to have a varied link mix, it’s very important since Penguin Update.

Comments are not always bad…

Comments (as well as fake profiles) are the main weapon of black-hat guys – the ones from the obscure side of the SEO force to say it simply – they add them automatically & by thousands… You probably have guessed that it’s not what I’ll recommend you to do.
Comments are really useful to engage real conversations with article authors, it has to be a natural action, don’t force yourself. You can analyze, give your opinion and sometimes just thank them if they share something very useful in your eyes.

Business Associations & Chambers

There are different associations & chambers in most cities or regions, they can be generalist or related to your field. Joining them is already very good for networking but you can also get a link on their website if they have some, it’s not always the case though but you can direct your search to these ones.

Job offers

I reckon this one is unexpected but if you actually need to hire someone, do not forget to add a link to your company website in your ad and share it to all relevant jobs sites. The links won’t stay too long for sure but it’s good the time they are there.

Events & Seminars

It’s another very good way to grow your network, even if you’re only in the audience. The goal though is to be on stage, it’ll be similar to guest blogging in terms of outcome: it’ll raise your exposure & authority… but in real life. Furthermore you’ll probably get a link to yours on the event’s website.
Keep in mind that there are often many ways to tell your audience to follow you on your site or social networks, they’ll be really likely to do it if they liked your speech.

© Photo by Daemys on Stock free images