Link bait is a strange term that’s often bandied around in reference to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) practices. Essentially, high quality online content is the bait that marketers employ to hook in new business through a feeding frenzy of viral content sharing. Here’s your ultimate guide to landing your own link bait success.
What is link bait?
According to The Oxford Dictionary, Link bait is –
“Content designed to attract attention and encourage those viewing it to create hyperlinks to the site, with the aim of improving the site’s position on the list of results returned by a search engine.”
Google head of Webspam, Matt Cutts describes it more simply as “something interesting enough to catch people’s attention.” Essentially, you want your content to spread like wildfire to enjoy the maximum amount of exposure. You just need to tap into the mindset of your audience to work out what will push their buttons.
Why do I need to link bait?
Link bait is to SEO what spinach is to Popeye. It might not be quite as instant but it will certainly help to bulk up your search ranking muscle. If your content is compelling and eye catching then more people are likely to link back to it. That’s important because it boosts your off-page SEO and consequently your organic search rankings.
If your wonderful content contains a liberal sprinkling of optimised keywords associated with your business niche then that will also boost the likelihood of your website being found by the search engines (and ultimately your end users).
Interesting link bait should, be its very nature, go viral. Sharing is caring after all. The domino effect of your clever content being shared like a hot potato is that it can drive traffic to your site. The more visitors you welcome to your site, the greater chance of converting them into leads and eventually paying customers. The great additional bonus is that, thanks to the high ranking search credentials of link bait content, you can expect well crafted link bait articles to continue to lure in visitors long after your content was originally published. How about that for a sustainable return on investment?
While your link bait content is doing the rounds across the internet ether it’s taking your business into brave uncharted territories, think about all those new audiences that you’re reaching with relative ease. Word of mouth is a powerful advert and link bait is the virtual equivalent. You’re effectively widening the net for your customer base. Even if not all of those new visitors convert to sales, you’ve effectively built a network of advocates who are willing to market your content – and subsequently – business to their contacts. You never know who they might be connected to and how your extended sphere of influence might repay you down the line.
“Linkbaiting sounds like a bad thing, but especially if it’s interesting information or fun, it doesn’t have to have negative connotations. I hereby claim that content can be both white-hat and yet still be wonderful ‘bait’ for links.”
So there you have it; go forth and grab some attention for your brand. Do it well and a whole host of potential new customers are sure to take the bait!
We hope you’ve found this article interesting. If so, we’d be delighted if you’d post a link to this on your blog or social media platforms…How’s that for link bait in action?!