While you may believe that you do not need to invest in link building any more, with Google’s updates focusing more on content, you could not be farther from the truth. Link building doesn’t just mean putting up backlinks to your website from different sources but ensuring that you keep a track of every site that’s mentioning you (think trackback).
Being aware about the sites that are linking to your site would ensure that you can optimize your SEO strategy as well as avoiding Google penalty for being mentioned on untrustworthy sites. If you’re looking to boost SEO, email alerts are a safe bet and a strategy you definitely need to employ. Email alerts help you get yourself kick start your SEO campaign in a number of ways. Here is a look at a few of them.
Use services like Google Alerts
Google Alerts is pretty popular and can alert you to a number of different factors including trackbacks. While keyword research and content identification are important, services like Google Alerts and Talkwalker along with moz.com’s Fresh Web Explorer does a good job at bringing you the alerts. Here are some of the things that you could know from these services:
- View exact links
You get to view all the links that have linked back to your site. The exact URL helps you to save hours of research.
- Search for what you need
You get to search for the exact stuff you need, minus the information you do not need. For instance, only search for relevant quotes or specific pages of your website that’s mentioned somewhere else.
- Search deep
Different tools show different ways to perform a search. If you’re using Fresh Web Explorer, you can get link to the root domain or the subdomain.
- Search for quotes
You can also check out quotes referenced from your site. If you are using TLD, and want to see only sites from a particular domain extension which has referenced quotes from your site, it’s possible too. For instance, if you are looking for Indian websites that have referenced your quote, just search TLD:IN and you will get to view sites only from India.
- Get alerts as you like
You can be updated about the developments in the link world either daily, weekly or monthly. More importantly, it helps marketers be focused on the strategies that they need to employ and tinker with strategies frequently, as and when needed. It’s like those daily reminders out there, helping you know not only about what you need to do but also broaden your mind as to what your competitors are doing.
Apart from being able to search more and faster, email alerts can help you improve your SEO strategy as well. Here are some things that you can probably be looking at with the Google Alerts that you receive.
- Links to your competitors and yourself
You need to play around with the tools. The tools do not just tell the links that point to your site, they can tell the links developed by your competitors too. There are a number of advantages here.
Say you own an internet marketing company. An internet company exists by the thousands out there, and the competition is fierce. Here’s how you can edge past your competitors. Set Google Alerts to know the type of keywords and content people are liking and the type of pages that are being mentioned more often. This will help you design your own SEO and content strategy.
You can get to know the people and websites who link to your competitors’ domain – in fact, you can also see the people who only like your competitors’ domain and not yours. This way, you can focus on link building for those sites that your competitors have an edge to. It’s pretty simple and can work wonders.
- When you only have your brand mentioned
How bad would it be if someone only mentioned your company name but doesn’t link it with your website? To build on your brand recognition, you need people to know more about what you offer, and your website is the best place for that. While Google Alerts cannot help you in this regard, nearly every other tool including mentionme.net can help you find out those instances when your brand has been mentioned without the website linking back to your site.
Just give the website owner a gentle reminder about adding in the link, more often than not they would love to comply. If your brand name is generic and people would have difficulty otherwise locating you without the link (like if your website domain name is abc.net and people would generally search for abc.com without a link), just comment or tweet about it to them, and more often than not, your link would be up.
- If you only have your keywords mentioned
What if you want to know which are the most authoritative sites that have content similar to your keywords? Fresh Web Explorer and Talkwalker both helps you know about it, helping you to optimize your strategy. For instance, if you’re a site selling dog food and come across a site reviewing dog foods, you could just let them know about linking back or reviewing your product as well.
- Shows Content Ideas
It’s important to be creative and while you can run out of ideas, good marketing and research skills can ensure that there is always a topic your readers will love. You can use tools like Fresh Web Explorer to know what type of content your competitors are producing that your company can relate to. If they are talking about a topic that you are interested in, it can help you get your adrenaline rushing again with new content ideas. New content ideas translate to more social media shares, richer outreach opportunities and more.
- Who are your visitors?
Coming to talk about visitors, there are probably a number of ways you can know where your visitors are from. We have already talked about how Google Adwords can help in this regard. However, these tools help you take this a bit more – now, you can also know how many links come from a particular geographic region. You can correlate then a number of factors, for example is it because of higher number of links from a particular geographic region that you get more visitors from that region? Is your target audience located in a different region than the region your most visitors are coming from? Alternatively, you can focus your strategy to get more links from a particular region or just know all website pointing to your site from one location, like the UK.
- Direct Links
Nobody underestimates the power of direct links. Locate the people or websites who have linked directly to you or your social media account like Facebook or LinkedIn. You can thank these people and also know what they’re saying about you. A little word of appreciation can go a long way in making these people promote your content more and can even share their comment in your social media circle. If someone has appreciated your dog food or the service of the website, you can share the comment. It doesn’t just help increase brand loyalty but makes others form a positive opinion about what you offer.
- Promoting your content
Now, let’s get to more serious business. How about finding blogs that write content relevant to your business? You can get to know about blogs that write about your topic and in turn get more content ideas. If they can help you guest post, you can consider the option too.
Email alerts are often an easier way to increase online reputation and needs to be combined with your regular SEO strategy. While you get exclusive insights about your competitors and customers, the information can be used in everything from devising your content strategy to marketing more effectively. Do not forget the social media alerts or Social Listening. We will talk about social listening in another post soon and how it can be a great way to know what others are telling about you.