Written by Charlie Brown
By their own admission, Google considers content and links to be the two biggest factors in determining its search results. While it is evident that content that is good will attract links and that links play a big role in improving both the popularity and visibility of the content, not all content types attract links. Even content that is capable of attracting links needs to be promoted well. It is not enough to create content because you can never take it for granted that people will discover it and build links. It is very important for content marketers to understand the many reasons for people to link online and build into your content the attributes that will make it valuable to readers and make them want to share it.
What Makes For Linkable Content?
Online content takes many forms; web pages, blogs, articles, e-books, white papers, videos, infographic, photos, and much more. The purposes that these types of content serve can be many; awareness, entertainment, education, and often, conversion to sales. Usually, people will link to content that they find to be useful, unique, insightful, entertaining or valuable. People may also want to link to content published by sites or authors with great authority to take advantage of the rub-off effect. Links are interpreted to be signals of trust by Google’s algorithms since it is only the trusted sites that are linked to by people. Typically, websites with greater authority tend to have greater visibility and larger audiences, which makes it easier for link acquisition and online SEO. When a site is unknown, it may be necessary to develop a strategy for tapping into some other site’s audience to assist your link building efforts. Critical to the process of creating content that is link-worthy is the appreciation of the basic reasons of people wanting to link, and incorporate into the content the very same reasons. Some types of content like studies and surveys, expert opinion and in-depth coverage of any specific subject always provide better fodder for link building.
Original Research / Information
Publishing original research is perhaps one of the best ways of attracting links. This is because the content offers users unique information that is simply not available anywhere else. This means that whenever someone wants to quote your research findings, they will need to link to you. Research is also more attractive for link-building because the basis is in hard data, not subjective opinions. When devising a strategy for content development, it can be a good idea to consider a new survey, study or experiment. However, research should always be done with the intention of providing greater value to your readers rather than just for links.
Link building can get a major boost if the content contains opinions or quotes from experts on the subject. This is because perspectives of experts can add a lot of acceptability and allow you to tap into the audiences of the concerned experts. Thus in a single stroke not only can you add more authority to your content but also widen your audience; both achievements help you to secure links.
Often content development on your own can be a very tough job so collaborating with others for joint content creation can be productive. While planning out your content, you should identify potential partners who have interests and audiences that are valuable. Once the partners are identified, you can conduct research into what your shared audiences would like to know and create appropriate content on a collaborative basis. This sort of an exercise helps to establish better authority and reputation in your industry and can open up fresh partnership opportunities.
It is well established that photographic or video content is loved more by audiences than text content. You will be able to attract more links if during your content ideation you build in sufficient scope for including imagery that supports your text. It is also possible to make your content visual-oriented with just the bare minimum of supporting-text. Videos are even more powerful that still photos for generating reader attention and links.
For content to be link-worthy, it is essential that it is interesting to users and add value to them in such a way that they will be compelled to share it with others. It pays to devise a content development strategy that takes into account what your audience wants and caters to their requirements in such a way that the content is considered valuable enough to be shared.