If you want Google to rank your content, you need other people to show Google that it’s worthwhile.

Google will change a few thousand times per year and every professional SEO consultant in the world has their own opinion of what these new changes really mean. But through all of those changes, one thing has remained constant: backlinks are incredibly valuable and remain one of Google’s most consistent ranking signals.

How do you acquire these high-quality backlinks? Simple: You create highly linkable content.

1. Understand the Difference Between Linkable and Shareable

There is a big difference between earning a backlink and a social media share. One is not any easier than the other and they are two very different things.

If you want to create shareable content, you want something fast and easily digestible. This is often something funny, inspirational, or timely. It probably has a pretty short shelf life. On the other hand, something linkable is likely much longer in length and more evergreen. You will likely have to spend more time researching and writing it. Credibility is not crucial to something being shared. But it’s essential to earn links.

Something shareable is often very broad and appeals to a larger group of people. However, something linkable typically has a more niche or narrow focus. You’re targeting a unique group of people, and hopefully impressing them enough to link back to your site.

2. Real Value

You need to give people a reason to link to your content, so you need to offer real value—people don’t just give their links away.

This means you’re going to have to do the work to earn it. That’s why well-researched, well-written long-form content is often more linkable than a quick little blog.

If you’re trying to create something linkable, think:

  • ·         Data-heavy and long-form blogs
  • ·         White papers/ downloadables
  • ·         Studies/reports
  • ·         Tutorials/ How-to guides

That being said, a nearly foolproof way to earn links is being the first in your market to summarize and express something detailed, or complicated, as concisely as possible. This is why infographics are so linkable (and shareable too for that matter).

3. Something New

Through the sheer number of people publishing content these days, you can assume that someone, somewhere, has written about your topic. If not, wow. If you are truly the first one to write about your topic, stop reading this and go publish it right now!

Everyone else has to bring something new to the table. Let’s say you’re a realtor working in a big market like Toronto. There are going to be a few hundred other realtors looking to write a market report when theOntario Real Estate Association releases their data each month. So, why should someone link to your blog instead of one of the others?

To earn links, you need to:

·         Be first to market: Sometimes you can earn links by winning the race to offer the first quality piece. But, if you miss the window by a few hours, your work could be wasted.

·         Be the most concise: Again, infographics are always a great way to do it.

·         Offer new stats: Add your own stats to establish yourself as a legit expert. For example, “55% of our customers in the East end said they are thinking about moving to the West.

·         Offer more targeted stats: Can you offer more targeted or niche stats or insights? For example, “The new building in Liberty Village is already 75% sold out, for an average of $2200.00-$2400.00 a month.

Adding any of these to your content takes time and effort. But the payoff is there.

4. Unique Images

A unique or interesting image creates an impression of unique content. If your audience has already seen this image somewhere else on the web, they will probably assume that these insights are also lifted from somewhere else. You may not get them to even read your content if the image is bad, much less get them to link to it.

The best images that you can use are ones that are truly unique to your company. If you run a flooding restoration company, show before-and-after pictures.  Now take things a step further and use a photo-editing site like Canva or Stencil to make it look like you have an on-staff graphic designer.

Never sabotage your great insights with a bad image.

The running theme here is that you can’t just expect links, you need to do something to earn them. You need to bring something new to the table to establish yourself as link-worthy.

Does this take a little bit more effort? Yes. Does that little bit of effort lead to massive potential SEO wins? Also yes.