Last update on July 15, 2014.
If your website were a political candidate, its votes would come in the form of backlinks on the web. Since the late 1990s search engines have used links as votes representing the web's democratic opinion, and the more websites you have linking to yours the higher you rank in the ballots as read by Google. Link building can be a long and frustrating process but remains the ace in the hole to reach higher rankings. There are a number of ways to build links to your site. If you have already started your own blog, you can maximize your social media impact by making easy-to-link to blog articles. For example, you can build a "101" list for an automotive topic, say "the top ten myths about car maintenance," and then promote them through social media outlets like Twitter and Facebook. The more people who share your article and link to it, the higher you move up the authority ladder.
Be a Creative Authority in your Automotive Industry
Link building isn't easy. Traditional link building techniques have included buying links from other sites and asking them to link to yours, but today Google is cracking down on websites with suspicious backlink profiles. That means many businesses have abandoned traditional link building strategies. The new game is Authority Building, an ethical link building strategy which relies on other websites to naturally link to yours. Authority building uses a number of strategies at one time including SEO, marketing, branding, and PR. It increases the value of your business overall and its benefits last. How can you get other websites to link to yours? Quality content is one of the best answers, and a good way to add fresh content to your site is by blogging and posting relevant articles on interesting topics. When you incorporate informative pages on your dealership website you can also increase your backlinks. For example, consider adding a vehicle history page to describe the background of some of your popular car models (say "history of the Corvette") or incorporate how-to videos and articles detailing popular car features like Bluetooth. You can do this on your own or hire a professional consultant to build your website with SEO optimization and quality content in mind.
Here are a few ideas to get you started with website authority building:
- Study your competitor's links. What are the trusted websites from where they are getting links? Use a resource like Open Site Explorer to find backlink details for competing websites and see how you can replicate their strategy.
- Ensure you build links using different types of anchor text. Use keywords within the anchor text, domain exact match and the company name. You want your links to look natural and not "built."
- Submit your website to local directories like Yahoo directory, Dmoz, Yelp, HotFrog & Google Places.
- Hold a contest and promote it online. Make it interesting and unique, people will share the links to your contest across social media sources. The more people are talking about your company the more authoritative you will become online.
- Become a sponsor for a local charity event and promote it on your website and social media.
- Send out a press release and syndicate it to as many article sites as possible like EzineArticles, GoArticles, iSnare and others.
- Release interesting infographics. They can be about anything, but the point is that they're easy to link to and easy to share.
- Get well-known bloggers in your community to blog about a vehicle or experience they had with your dealership. Have the blogger link back to your website within their blog.