Why do people link to your website?

Search engines see links to your pages from relative sites as a vote of confidence. So why do consumers, editors and bloggers link? And how can you take advantage of this?

1. Product pages

Backlink audits for online retailers tend to show links going to the homepage or specific product pages.

Although these links are helpful at first, they often break as products sell out or a new, improved version goes on sale.

So what should you do about it if this happens to you? Get in contact with your web development team to set up 301 redirects on all broken links to a relevant category page. If you are working with influencers, try to encourage them to link to ‘evergreen’ pages that will not disappear.

2. Outreach and partnerships

Editorial, digital outreach and PR teams spend a substantial amount of time encouraging influencers to write about their brand through events, reviews and content or brand partnerships.

If this applies to your company, include directions on where you would like the links to point to.

3. Brand stories

To create brand stories that appeal to bloggers, editors and journalists, PR gurus typically invest in original research, high profile partnerships and launches to create one story from a number of different angles.

If you are at this stage, what do you do? Try to include landing pages and onsite content so bloggers have something to link to when covering your amazing story.

4. Competitions

There’s a reason why competitions are still used in both offline and online marketing – it’s because they capture your target audience’s attention, no matter what medium.

Hosting competitions on your website can encourage links from social networks, influencer sites, forums and competition sites.

What should you do about it? Ask your web development team to create a competition landing page where all of your competitions are held. It will act as a parent page where all competitions can be accessed. This will try to reduce the number of broken links through to the individual competition pages.

Read and comment on the original Econsultancy blog.