SEO basically means fine-tuning your site/blog’s content to rank it higher in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Page). Basically, it comprises of two sections- On Page SEO and Off page SEO. Both are crucial factors to rank high in SERPs. Here, we will see in detail how to deal with off page optimization without overdoing it.
Webmasters often give more attention towards on page optimisation. They religiously use keywords in titles, stuff KW throughout the article, keep a decent word count etc.
But all this goes in vain, until you provide due attention towards off page stuff! Your blog is basically like a car. The driver can be compared to ‘on page’ optimization and the engine compared to ‘off page’ activities.
Both of them are responsible for the smooth running of a blog. Each blogger should strive for a healthy combination of both. Off page optimization deals with processes other than optimizing blog posts.
Off page SEO: Ways to improve it
- Social Media Presence
Make it sure that your blog and its content has a strong presence in Social Sharing sites. Out of the more than 200 factors deciding your blog’s fate in a SERP, this one is an important factor!
Look, all these social networking sites are free to join. They are used by millions around the globe.
Sharing your blog’s content there will help you drive more traffic to your blog, improve off page optimization and help you network with fellow bloggers. So, you have no excuse to avoid it.
The more likes, shares, retweets and +1s your blog and its posts gets, the better it is. Such activities signal search engines that the content is good. So, equip your blog with like, tweet and +1 buttons at least.
Yes, backlinks, the good quality ones, still holds great importance. There are loads of articles that teach the ‘art’ of building backlinks. Here’s a brief guide for you:
Build backlinks by commenting on other blogs
Comment on other blogs related to your niche. Make it a point to leave meaningful comments on good quality blogs. But don’t overdo it though! Don’t cross that delicate border between commenting and spamming!
Build backlinks the natural way
I’ve told this before too, this is the best way to get backlinks. Publish posts that are truly useful. I mean give out ‘milestone’ articles on your blog. Make other bloggers link to your blog posts for reference. I know it is not that easy. But if you succeed in doing so, backlinks will accumulate with less (or even no) effort!
Make very interesting and useful Infographics, Videos, Documents, e-books etc. Make it available for other bloggers to share. Ask them to leave a link to your blog whenever they share it.
Links from Forums
First of all, find some good forums belonging to your niche. Become a member, be active, solve others’ problems and build reputation there. Most forums allow users to leave couple of links to their blogs. Use your blog’s URL there.
Doing so will get you valuable backlinks. On the other hand, visitors will also arrive at your blog through your forum’s profile.
I regularly make use of Yahoo answers. I go there, answer people’s questions and leave a link to my blog post that answers their question. If you are not interested in Y! Answers, try Quora.
An aggressive, quality guest blogging campaign can work wonders for you! It’ll give you much better exposure and get you good old backlinks.
A handy tip for dealing with bad backlinks
Many times, it may happen that bad quality blogs link back to our blog. This can negatively affect our blog’s quality. The best way to avoid it is to use the Disavow tool that Google Webmaster Tools offers. Doing so will let Google know that the poor quality blog has nothing to do with ours.
- Social Bookmarking
Okay, it has got less importance, but still it is not dead. The presence and faring of your blog and its content on such sites still counts. Share your blog posts on sites like Reddit, Digg, StumbleUpon, Delicious etc.
Also place social bookmarking buttons on your blog posts, so that visitors may share them on these sites.
- Directory Submissions
There are lots of directories available, where you may submit your blog. Most of them offer free and paid services. Make it a point to submit your blog to high value, good reputation directories like DMOZ, Technorati etc.
Off Page SEO: What not to do
- No spamming
There is a fine line between commenting and spamming. Do not cross the border separating them. Spamming around will only help you in gaining the wrath of fellow bloggers and search engines.
- Say no to paid backlinks
Play it safe, avoid paid backlinks. It is better to spend an extra few hours each day, building backlinks using the methods I described, rather than going for a quick fix. You never know what kind of links they build in 24 hours!
- Link exchange with bad sites/blogs
Link exchange had its golden days. But that was until search engines found out how webmasters fooled them by strategically exchanging links.
Many times, instead of doing good, link exchange does damage. That’s why I didn’t include it in the list. Don’t go for it unless you are really sure about the site/blog you are exchanging links with.