It’s amazing to realize that another year has passed since the 2011 edition of 79 Link Building Resources where we listed various blogs, their top link building posts, and some great link building tools to add to your toolkit. Those blogs, to this day, are still great resources to visit when looking for posts on link building.
Since that post was published, a lot of things have changed in the link building world. In the 2012 edition of link building resources, we will cover the big changes that have happened in the link building world as well as what works (and doesn’t) when it comes to link building strategy.
Major Happenings in the Link Building World
First off, here’s a rundown of what has happened in the last year or so that has had a major impact on the world of link building.
- Google Algorithm Change History – This timeline is a great way to keep up with the latest algorithm changes Google releases.
- Another Step to Reward High Quality Sites – Google’s official announcement for the Penguin update.
- The Google Penguin Update: Over-Optimization, Webspam, & High Quality Empty Content Pages – SEOBook’s coverage of the first Google Penguin update.
- Google Penguin for non-SEOs – If you are not a SEO and want to grasp what happened with Google Penguin, here is your guide.
Thought Pieces on Post-Penguin Link Building
These posts are a little less how-to and have more insightful content on the post-Penguin link building era.
- Rethinking Enterprise Link Building in a Post-Penguin Era – Bigger brands are more likely to be under a microscope, not only from the search engines but also from competition. For enterprises, it’s even more important to remember how crucial it is to build links naturally.
- Links Are The Web’s Building Blocks, And Fear Of Google Has Them Crumbling – Google has been sending out a whole lot of messages to webmasters about problematic links. People are in a frenzy trying to get rid of links that may or may not be hurting their search engine rankings, and this is a frenzy created by Google. It may not be exactly what Google intended, but it’s happening.
- The New Link Ecology In A Post Penguin World – In a post Penguin world, Google is making it more difficult to achieve long-term success using link ecology tactics.
- Link Building Means Earning Hard Links Not Easy Links – The core message is the same. You don’t want links. You want good links. And sadly, Danny Sullivan thinks many people have completely lost track of what a good link is.
Link Building Recovery After Penguin & Unnatural Link Warnings
Speaking of Google’s Penguin algorithm change, here are some things to do if you were hit by this update or an unnatural link warning in Webmaster Tools.
- Bad Link Building Recovery After Google Penguin – For those who were hit by Google’s Penguin update, the situation is dire. The big question is: Can you recover? Yes. But it won’t be easy. Here are some things you should plan on doing as you begin cleaning up a bad link profile.
- Why So Many Suffered from Google Penguin Update + How to Recover – A big reason why many blogs, businesses and websites have suffered from Google’s Penguin and Panda updates this year is due to inexperienced, Black Hat, or just plain bad SEOs. If you’ve paid for these inexperienced, Black Hat or bad SEOs, or are one yourself, you were waiting to be penalized. And now you may have a big mess to tidy up.
- Strategic Link Building Strategy in the Penguin Age – In this webcast two link building experts – Jon Ball of Page One Power and Erin Everhart of 352 Media – explain how they made key adjustments in their link building strategies to successfully recover and move forward with the Google updates. Click Watch Now and then register to see the previously recorded presentation.
- Unnatural Links: What They Are & What to Do About Them – Did you receive a warning that your site has unnatural links? Learn what unnatural links are and what to do in case you are affected by the Penguin update.
- How Pandas & Penguins Change Your Link Building Strategy – Their post-Panda lowest days (weekends) equal our pre-Panda peak days (Tuesdays – Thursdays). And Erin Everhart wants to tell you how they did it, all by just adjusting their link building strategy.
- How To Create an Excel Spreadsheet to Remove Link Spam Post Penguin – A comprehensive excel spreadsheet template that could be easily duplicated and handed off to an outsourcer for webmaster outreach in order to get the links removed.
- Strategies for Diagnosing Penguin and Recovering – Distilled discusses what Penguin is, how to diagnose a Penguin traffic drop, how to check the toolbar PageRank (TBPR) or Page Authority (PA) of links, how to check indexation of links quickly, and then gives some overview strategies about how to approach different Penguin scenarios.
- 4 Ways to Protect Your Website from Future Penguin Updates – In order to make sure your website isn’t hurt by future Penguin updates, here are four things you should do with your SEO starting now.
- Google Penguin Crashes Wedding Site’s Shady Link Building Strategy – For those who have been negatively impacted, what follows are details about one site that has been hit by the Google Penguin update. This site was guilty of doing some shady link building and had no idea what link building strategies were used due to outsourcing. You’ll also see what they are doing to recover.
- Google Penguin Update Recovery Tips & Advice – Struggling to know what to do in the wake of Google’s Penguin Update? Judging from all the comments and forum discussions Search Engine Land saw, plenty are. They’ve got a little initial advice from Google on the topic, mixed with their own.
- How to Clean Your Site after the Google Penguin Update – This post outlines the reasons why you might have been affected by the Penguin update and the next steps you should take if you were.
Post-Penguin Link Building Strategies
Next, let’s look at some posts with a wide variety of link building strategies, all written by experts post-Penguin.
- 8 Link Building Tips – For today’s Whiteboard Friday, Paddy Moogan covers eight tips to help you build more links in eight minutes. Read all 35 link building tips from Paddy at Mozcon here.
- Link-building Tips and Tools for Bloggers in a Post-Panda and Penguin World – While the title says for bloggers, these tips and tools can be used by anyone endeavoring in link building.
- 17 Experts Weigh in on How to Do Quality Link Building in Volume – 17 SEO experts have contributed their thoughts and experience on how to do quality link building in volume. Scaling link building is tough, read this post to find out how to do it.
- 131 (Legitimate) Link Building Strategies – A list and discussion of 131 (legitimate) link building tactics, some of which work today just as they did 10 years ago.
- Penguin Analysis: SEO Isn’t Dead, But You Need to Act Smarter (And 5 Ways to Do So) – Microsite Masters provides solutions on how to survive and thrive in SEO after the Google Penguin Update.
- Greg Boser at SEOpen House: Your Post-Penguin Questions Answered – BlueGlass put together 5 videos highlighting Greg Boser’s talk at our SEOpen House. See Greg speak about Penguin, link building, sustainable SEO business models, anchor text diversity, and more!
- The 6 Month Link Building Plan for an Established Website – This is not a six-month SEO plan, so it doesn’t cover site audits or keyword research, for example (although you should read this post if you are planning to conduct an SEO audit). James Agate focuses on the acquisition and optimization of links and content for links.
- The Four Keys To Post-Penguin Directory Submission Happiness – When it comes to directory submissions that are generally safe, a focus on quality, diversity, timing and relevance must play a central part in selecting which directories to submit to.
- The Definitive Guide to Qualifying a Link Prospect [with Video] – Link builders should look for cues that make a website a good potential partner. They should look at metrics like a SEO, but also at less tangible cues like engagement and trustworthiness.
- The Noob Guide to Link Building – Everything about link building including a six month link building plan.
- What Types of Links Should We Be Getting – Penguin has changed everything. Oh wait, no it hasn’t. All it did was penalize those who were doing what they knew was wrong, but the only difference is that Google actually followed through with some of their threats on bad links. So what SHOULD we be doing? We know what links we SHOULDN’T be pursuing, so it’s finally time to break down the links that you can get.
- Anti-Penguin Link Building Plan – The best way to protect your site from this uncharted territory is through your existing link profile. Especially if you already have obtained great and high value links pointing to your domain. Adding more of these types of links to your site make it more solid in the eyes of Google (given that they add to your site’s percentage of good vs. bad links based on their historic index).
- 12 Timeless Link Building Tips for Business Blogs – Here are a few timeless tips for building natural links that will attract (and engage) customers to your business blog.
- Link Building Strategies – The Complete List – This may have been done before Penguin struck, but it is still an awesome resource including tons of different ideas for links through content, customer service, design, development, and more.
Links to Avoid
Just as important as the links you should be building, here are some posts on links you shouldn’t be building.
- 17 Types of Link Spam to Avoid – Going forward, the wise SEO would want to take note of the types of link spam to make sure that what they’re doing doesn’t look like a type of link spam. Google’s response to, and attitude toward, each type of link spam varies, but every link building method becomes more and more risky as you begin moving toward the danger zone.
- 10 Types Of Unnatural Link Building Tactics and 10 Quality Alternatives – How can you compete when the competitors are building links that are low quality, paid, or otherwise spammy? Here’s a look at 10 types of link building strategies that are spammy, low quality, or unnatural, plus 10 quality alternatives.
- 7 Link Building Mistakes You Ought to Avoid – Some significant changes have been made through Google updates that can affect your link-building strategy, so let’s explore those changes and others to help you maintain, if not increase, your rankings.
Link Building with Content
Since content is becoming increasingly more important, here are some posts on link building with content:
- How to Create Content Partnerships that Build Ethical Links and Authority – This article will give content marketers tips on how to effectively (and safely) link build in today’s post-Penguin SEO landscape by using quality content and forming long-term content relationships.
- How to Survive the Google Penguin Update with Effective Content Writing – The days of cheap and low-cost SEO articles are rapidly going away — thankfully. With its successive updates, Google is trying to push forward content that really deserves its place in the ranking index. In turn, this means pushing down content that doesn’t carry much value: Content that just rambles on will not be ranked well no matter how brilliantly it has been “optimized.”
- Why Link Building Strategies Fail – Learn how to create a content strategy that includes link bait (isn’t all link bait) and figure out where you can leverage the content for link building.
- 10 Ways to Use Images for Link Building – The great thing about using images for marketing is that it’s one of the most efficient ways to build brand recognition and acquire natural mentions/links to a website, seeing that the images can easily stimulate interest in an audience (particularly if they are really compelling and/or visually appealing), and the images are very easy to disseminate.
- The Ethics of Link Building Through Content – A look at the ethical / moral side of link building through content.
- 7 Reasons Content Marketing is Better Than Link Building – Content marketing and link building both have their merits in the realm of search marketing. However, the tale of the tape reveals that content marketing has a distinct advantage over link building for marketers. Here are seven reasons why.
- Content Auditing for Link Builders – Why You Should Do It, Tips, and a Spreadsheet – Find out why link builders should consider a content audit spreadsheet to organize link worthy content details in one place.
- Building Links with Video Content – Learn about the SEO benefits of video, where to place video, video sitemaps, and places to pitch your new video for potential links.
- 10 Ideas for Link Bait and 5 Ways of Getting the Word Out – Link bait ideas and ways to make sure your link bait content gets links.
Link Building Locally
If you have a local business, these link building strategies are made just for you.
- 5 Local Linkbuilding Ideas For The Post-Penguin/Panda Era – Andrew Shotland offers up some tried and true local marketing tips that just so happen to also help generate links, hopefully without infuriating any Google algo-beasts.
- The Complete Guide to Link Building with Local Events – Whether you’re a small local business or an international company, hosting local events is a great way to build your brand, both offline and online.
- Link Building for Local Search – Let’s say that the worst case scenario happens and you lose your search visibility in Google. Wouldn’t it be great if that didn’t completely cripple your business because you had such great local visibility? That’s just one reason why local links are becoming more critical than ever.
- 5 Practical Link Building Strategies for Local Businesses – A list of link building angles for local and regional businesses looking to expand their presence online.
- Ethical Wikipedia Link Building – Inbound Marketers, SEO’s (whatever you want to call us) are looking to drive relevant traffic, and Wikipedia can be a great source (no-follow or not) of that but also link value.
Link Building with PR & Social Media
Think PR and social media have nothing to do with link building? Think again.
- SEO Mindshift: Link Building As Online PR & Social Promotion – Isn’t Google Penguin putting the hammer down on many SEO focused link building schemes? Do links even matter anymore, now that social shares are being debated as the new electricity of the web? To help answer those questions, Lee Odden shares some insights to provide some context for an effective approach that is risk free, relevant, and high impact for building links and attention to a new website or social destination.
- How to Construct and Use Personas for Link Building and Social Media – How to use created personas in doing actual link acquisition and social media marketing practices, by using them as ambassadors that will help scale the process of marketing a brand over the web.
- Using Social Media To Build Links & Impact Your SEO – In this post, SEO.com will discuss using social media to impact your SEO efforts and how the two can work together to grow your business.
- Better Than Link Building: Authority Building with HARO – Rather than link building, Matt McGee has been doing authority building with HARO and sees great results from it, including increased search traffic.
Link Building with Conversions in Mind
If your ultimate goal is website conversions, then keep that in mind when link building.
- E-Comm Websites: Step Up your Q4 Content Game – Learn how to create content that leads to conversions and links.
- How to Develop Conversion-Oriented Link Building Strategies using Google Analytics – Instead of pushing your way to obtain higher search rankings through link building, why not use your link building efforts to hit two birds with one stone – to improve both rankings and conversions – by building two strong channels where you can generate conversions (via search and referrals).
The Top Link Building Tools
Nothing makes link building more productive and effective than the right tools. Here are posts reviewing some favorite link building tools of 2012:
- 15 Helpful Link Building Tools – A list of some helpful link building tools you can use day in and day out for guest posting, BLB, and group interviews.
- 6 Link Building Tools to Boost Your Traffic – Matt Beswick tested six of the most popular link-building tools over the last few months to figure out the pros and cons of each. Here’s what you need to know.
- 8 Link Building Tools I Couldn’t Live Without – Included in this list are tools that Jon Quinton uses for a variety of things such as valuing a link prospect, right through to identifying poor quality links that he might want to consider removing.
- 6+ Best Link Building Tools That Help Your Organize and Track the Mess – Link building is one of the most exhausting, frustrating processes associated with online business. Whether you run a shop or a blog, you are constantly trying to use SEO tactics to promote. Which means cultivating positive relationships that will lead to viable backlinks. These tools can help you keep track of it all.
- Link Building Tools We Use at Distilled – Distilled gathered up a list of all the link building tools and resources they turn to daily across the company for data, analysis, research, customer relationship management, content promotion, and inspiration.
The Best Blogs Discussing Link Building
Want to keep up with link building news? Here are the top SEO blog’s link building categories.
- Link Building on Search Engine Land
- Link Building on Search Engine Watch
- Link Building on SEOmoz
- Link Building on Search Engine Roundtable
- Link Building on Search Engine Journal
- Link Building on KaisertheSage
- Link Building on WordTracker
- Link Building on Ontolo
- Link Building on BlueGlass
- Link Building on SEOgadget
- Link Building on Distilled
- Link Building on Point Blank SEO
- Link Building on Pole Position Marketing
- Link Building on Vertical Measures
Want to follow link buildling on Twitter? Don’t miss the 30 Link Building Experts You Need to Follow list.
Q&A on Link Building
Have questions about link building, or want to demonstrate your link building expertise? Here are some places where you will find lots of people asking about link building.
- Search Marketing on LinkedIn Answers (search for link building)
- Link Building Group on LinkedIn
- Link Building on Quora
- Link Building on Focus
There you have it! 79 great link building resources to chew on. Did I miss any of your favorite posts or link building blogs? If so, please share them in the comments, and happy linking!
About the Author: Kristi Hines is a freelance writer, professional blogger, and social media enthusiast. Her blog Kikolani focuses on blog marketing for personal, professional, and business bloggers. You can follow her on Google+, Twitter, and Facebook.