SEO Tips: Search Operators for Link building
I already know my reader were anticipating their Gurus tips on natural links and building natural links. Everyone is much confused on this mind boggling issue to generate natural link building. So I took this issue seriously and consulted few experts of our industry followed by every newbie. So here are some tips and suggestions on the most frequently asked question, “Your favorite Search Operators for Link building and Tips for Building Natural Links?”
Here comes the Experts 🙂
. [“Write for us” OR contributors OR Columnists KEYWORD] for searching guest post opportunities (example)
. [KEYWORD “submit your *”] for searching additional opportunities like contests, reviews, etc (example)
. [KEYWORD interviews] for high-targeted interview opportunities and outreach. Interviews work great for branding and reputation management! (example)
My favorite search operator for link building is searching for my target keyword in Google BEFORE I actually write anything. That’s huge. Because unless you know what’s already out there, you’re going to have a tough time building something that will generate natural links for you.
So I always search for my keyword (and a few related keywords) to see if there’s content ideas I can base my article off of or stuff out there that I can improve upon.
One of the most effective link building strategies is to find mentions of your brand and then reach out to the owners of those sites, which already mention your brand anyway, for a link. The operator for this would be something like:
“Brand Name” –site:http://branddomain.com
This returns mentions of your brand name excluding those on your own domain.
Now the advanced bit would be to export all of those results, whilst displaying 100 results, using the SEO Quake Chrome Plugin. You can then crawl the list of URLs using Screaming Frog, with custom filters for the brand URL to determine which of those pages are already linking to your site, all in under five minutes.
When you first email, you should approach by asking a question like “Could you tell me who manages this page”, rather than starting with, “could you give me a link”. Asking for a link immediately puts site owners off responding to you. You should also make sure you use a branded email and avoid the big mistakes of email outreach (http://dejanseo.com.au/the-guest-post-request-zombie-apocalypse/).
My favourite search operators are:
inpostauthor: this one let’s you search for authors who are writing for various publications. A lot of freelance writers/journalists write for several publications so this is a useful way to find out where they write and might mean the difference between 1 good link or 3 for your client.
Another one I use sometimes is “guest post” mycompetitordomain.com -site:mycompetitordomain.com This helps me to uncover a few places where my competitors are guest posting for future opportunities.
Some good ones I like to use:
1. Competitive link analysis:
link:www.website.com.au (competitor analysis yet very small sample) or use Ahrefs for a more complete link profile view.
2. Resource page analysis:
site:.edu “Resource + INDUSTRY” (On the fly resource pages analysis)
site:.gov “Resource + INDUSTRY” (On the fly resource pages analysis)
– You can really play around with the above combinations.
3. Resource page URL analysis:
site:.edu inurl:resource (you really need to play around with the different combinations you use)
4. Full site view analysis:
Use the site syntax “site:www.website.com” too see how many pages they have indexed, not really for link building yet can be effective for competitive analysis.
5. Sub domain analysis:
To track the sub domains on your site you can also use (-www site:website.com) this will show any sub domains you can target for link building.
This will be a good start for any project. Prosperity Media
My favorite search operators are quite basic but for me the most powerful. They are: “site:” and “intitle:”, as I’m much less than before on the link building side of things I don’t use them that often anymore or search operators in general. Site: makes it possible to search for queries on a specific site. While intitle: also does exactly what it’s named, searching within the tag of a webpage.
They’re both quite useful for finding contact details after you’ve done link prospecting, I’ve done a lot of link building before and I found that finding contact details for the right people was the hardest part. So being able to quickly find contact pages instead of digging through navigations was for me most useful: “site:example.com intitle:contact” did the job in milliseconds.
Also being able to use both of these search operators to make sure there has or hasn’t been any content published related your nice makes it powerful for me.
Technically these are 2 questions. I always think that simple search operators do wonders if you know when to use it!
My strategy heavily based on content development and content marketing so my fav. Search query is Industry + “Write for us”. If you are looking for attracting natural links using this search operator then in that case you have to create EPIC content.
If your Content will be powerful and worth reading for the targeted audience then this search operator will allow you to find great placed where your audience is already present, all you have to do is to publish your content piece there and promote it within the targeted audience.
(Repeating it again) If your content will be EPIC, people will share it naturally and you will get links that point back to your desired websites.
Here are a few search operators that have helped me find good quality platforms:
• Niche + Associations + Editorial Submissions
• Keyword + Top 10 Resources + City + Blogs inurl:.com
• Niche + Blog Posts + “email your submissions” or “email your articles” or “send an email”
• Keyword + “Generic Post Idea” + Blogs
Tips for Building Natural Links:
From my experience so far, I’ve found Infographics, Informative & helpful content, Case Studies, Guides, and Videos to be great resources to earn links without doing anything.
For example, our infographic on Google search updates in 2012 got more than 200 links naturally without doing anything. Almost all the posts being published on our blog gets 5 to 30 links naturally without making any strong efforts. We just promote them through all our social media channels. In fact, some of our posts got featured in Search Engine Land’s Daily SearchCap that you can see here and here. We also recently published a couple of case studies that helped us acquiring about 50+ links in all.
All you need to do is put a great effort in making the content awesome, useful and something from which your target audience can read and learn. That’s easier said than done, but certainly doable.
Apart from these things, I think making tools that are not available publicly also does the trick. We used this strategy for one of our clients and that helped us acquire a large number of incoming links, that too naturally.
There are several advanced search queries that I use every day to easily get the page/sites that I want. These desired pages would provide me an idea for my content creation and would open doors for link building opportunities.
Here are some of my favorite search operators (I usually combine two operators to get specific results):
inurl: and intext combination
Inurl:domain.com intext: http:// OR intext:www. “your keyword”
This would help me see results that have the keyword and URLs inserted in the page. The URL had been inserted either by a mention by the webmaster or a commenter on the post for a reference or resource.
The reason you want to use this is that you would be able to see URLs of content pieces that are commonly being mentioned by bloggers in a post. This is a good indication of the quality of the content you want to consider as your reference for your blog posts.
E.g. inpostauthor:brian dean
This is my most favorite search operator since it will give you pages where a person contributed his or her guest posts. It will make your task of finding guest post prospects much easier than other link prospecting methods. Also, when you type in a name of an industry influencer, you are sure that you’ll get a list of authoritative guest post prospects.
E.g. link:digitalphilippines.net -digitalphilipines.net
It will provide pages that linked to a specific website. I usually add this (-digitalphilippines.net) to just give me pages from external sources. Filtering the results by 24 hours or 7 days will help me track new links for my site. Thanking the blogger for the mention/link would help me setup new relationships with people in the industry.