Link Building Blunders That Will Set Your SEO Campaign Back

Written by Nick Stamoulis

SEO informed website owners know to stay away from spammy, low-quality links and that it’s the quality of their inbound links that matters more than the quantity. A huge inbound link portfolio means nothing unless all of the links are from well-respected, authoritative industry websites. However, that doesn’t mean that SEO link building has become irrelevant. Quite the opposite. Inbound links remain a top SEO ranking factor and it’s in the best interest of website owners to continue to build them. Here are some of the top link building blunders even the most well-intentioned website owners are making:

Strictly focusing on “natural” links

Yes, natural links that occur when other website owners take it upon themselves to link over to your website as a resource are some of the best links for SEO purposes. They’re telling the search spiders that they find something valuable on your website. While writing and publishing great link-worthy content on your website is an important part of SEO link building today, it’s not the only kind of link building to be doing. It’s still important to do some old-fashioned link building: researching link opportunities (directory listings, writing opportunities, blog comments) on industry websites and, for local businesses, on local websites.

Disavowing every bad link

Every website is going to have some bad links that pop up out of nowhere, through no fault of the website owner. It just happens. And Google knows this. For the majority of websites, having some bad links isn’t going to hurt in any way. Google essentially just ignores them. Which is why there’s no reason to be stalking your link portfolio every day and disavowing anything that comes up that doesn’t look good. Chances are, they will drop off anyway. Google even warns website owners that the disavow tool is “an advanced feature and should only be used with caution. If used incorrectly, this feature can potentially harm your site’s performance in Google’s search results.”

Not linking out to other websites

Inbound links carry the lion’s share of SEO link trust, but the search spiders are obviously seeing your outbound links too, and who you are associating yourself with on the web. Linking out to authoritative websites in your niche is a good thing. It’s also good for the user experience. Whenever you reference a statistic or any other research, always link out to the source. Doing so can also promote goodwill in a niche community. If you’re linking out to and sharing their content, they will certainly see that and they might return the favor.

These link building blunders certainly aren’t as harmful as participating in black hat link schemes or link exchanges or any other spammy tactic, but they are still mistakes nonetheless that can hold an SEO campaign back.

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