What Is Off-Page SEO? A Beginner’s Guide for Small Businesses
Though 66.31% of online pages don’t have a single backlink, this is a huge mistake. Studies show that the more backlinks a page has embedded in it, the more traffic it’s going to get on Google.
So, what gives?
It’s possible that these businesses either don’t know about or underestimate the importance of off-page SEO strategies. If you’re one of these businesses but you want to do better, you might be asking yourself, ‘what is off-page SEO, anyway?’ That’s what we’re going to talk about here today. Read on for some information on how you can rank more highly in Google by manipulating factors off of your page!
What Is Off-Page SEO?
Off-page SEO (also called off-site SEO) is a pretty easy concept to grasp once you imagine the internet as one large, gear-operated machine.
Each website is a gear that makes the rest of the interlocking gears turn. Sites that do well can profit off those that are growing and those that are growing can benefit from those with established reputations. This makes the gears lock together and turn smoothly. The connection between a big, reputable site and a smaller, fast-growing site make the machine function smoothly.
These connections are the result of off-page SEO. Essentially, off-page SEO refers to manipulations that site owners perform outside of their own page. This is in contrast with on-page SEO, which refers to manipulations within the site itself.
Off-page SEO means site promotion on or linking to other platforms. This is often associated with link building. Linking to other sites is an awesome way to become more reputable, and having pre-established sites link to you? Well, that’s a veritable gold mine. Let’s take a look at link building and why it’s an important aspect of off-page SEO.
Link Building With Off-Page SEO
Generally, there are three forms of link-building for SEO. They are:
- Natural links, which are given naturally in the text without the page owner having to do anything extra (such as a fashion blogger adding a link that takes the reader to their favourite designer shoe brand)
- Manually-built links, which are created through active link-building (like getting customers to share your blog posts and link to your webpage through their own social media)
- Self-created links, which happen when you add backlinks in online directories, press releases, or any other form of link insertion with optimised anchor texts
What Is Backlinking?
Backlinking happens when content creators for your website link to other relevant websites. These sites, while not your direct competitors, will be 100% relevant to the page that your site visitors are reading. They usually will expand on a concept within your content that you want readers to become more interested in.
Another important part of quality backlinks is that the links are reputable. This means that they come from websites that get lots of traffic and those that have been cited a lot on other internet pages.
This not only builds trust with your audience but looks awesome to search engine crawlers. When crawlers associate your page with high-traffic pages that people love, they’ll assume that you’re relevant and reputable, too. This pushes you up in the rankings and lets your business soar to new heights!
What Is Guest Posting?
In the simplest terms, guest posting is a way of getting a backlink.
It’s a paid link building effort, but it’s one where you pay another site to include your page in their blog post as a backlink. This will drive traffic from that page onto your site and will link you to another reputable page in the same way that your page’s backlinking efforts will.
Selecting the Right Backlinks
It’s important to note that not all backlinks are of high quality. There are some specific ways that you can identify that a backlink is good for including in your site. Here are some signs that a backlink is good enough to use on your page:
- It’s popular with consumers and has high traffic (this can be checked using a rankings checker tool)
- It’s credible/trustworthy/reputable (remember that you’re associating yourself with the page you’re linking to- an unsavoury link will make your page seem unsavoury)
- The link is comprised of newer content (don’t pick something that’s over 2 years old)
- The page is related to the topic of your blog post and is something that readers will be interested in clicking on
On the flip side, here are some of the qualities of a poor backlink:
- Something that isn’t relevant to what you’re talking about
- The link takes you to the website of your competitors (this is quite possibly the worst thing you can do)
- The anchor text isn’t something that pertains to the site you link to (‘click here’ or ‘read more’ aren’t good anchor texts despite their tempting nature)
Having high-quality backlinks is essential to driving traffic to your page. However, bad link building will actively harm your site by making search engine spiders (and consumers) feel that you’re unreputable. This perceived low credibility will squash your chances of developing a wider audience.
How to Find Quality Links
If you’re wondering how to find quality links to include in your blog posts, never fear! We’re here to help.
The first thing you should do is check the domain authority (DA) of a website. This is a ranking system developed by Moz that predicts how well a website will rank in SERPs. The DA score will be between 1 and 100, and the higher the number is, the better the link will be.
You can copy-paste the URL of the site you plan to link to in this tool. It will tell you the DA of your potential link so that you know how well the site you’re associating with is doing.
Once you find a quality link, you need to place it with the right anchor text. A bad anchor text will do nothing to improve your SEO. It can even damage it if it’s overly generic or stuffed with too many keywords. A good anchor text is:
- Short and sweet (between 2-5 words)
- Relevant to the page you’re linking to
- Low in keyword density
- Not generic (as we said before, ‘click here’ isn’t going to cut it)
Other Aspects of Off-Page SEO
While backlinking and guest posting is by far the most widely-known aspects of off-site SEO, but this doesn’t mean that they’re the only ones! There are tons of ways that you can drive traffic to your site by manipulating external factors. Here is a couple of the best:
- Social media site-building efforts
- Posting frequently on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.
- Making sure that the content is high-quality and engaging
- Linking to your official webpage/blog post from your social pages
- Having a YouTube channel and posting videos on it (73% of people are more likely to use a service after seeing a video!)
- Building trust and credibility with your target audience
- Getting cited on other (credible) webpages
- Using an authoritative (but friendly) tone when engaging with customers/reviewers
- Responding to reviews to get any issues people may have sorted
In addition to these awesome ways to drive traffic to your page, there are a few ways that off-site strategies can make you look less appealing to crawlers. If people block your official webpage or if they block you on social media, this is obviously a bad sign. People reporting and blacklisting your page is also… bad, to say the least.
If you have high-quality content, though, you shouldn’t worry about these things!
Local Off-Page SEO
Local off-page SEO is something you should pay special attention to if you want to rank in a specific area where you operate. Some aspects of local SEO include:
- Google My Business (GMB), which is the free business profile from Google that pops up on your Smartphone screen when you search for services ‘near me’
- This is often considered to be the #1 factor in local ranking
- You can claim this profile on your Google account
- Optimise your profile to have more information that will boost engagement
- NAP citations (getting online mentions of your business that display your Name, Address, and Phone number
- Get reviews from local users and have people type their location into the review platform
All of these strategies should be considered while you go about optimising your page.
Why Should You Use These Strategies?
Great! You understand what off-page SEO is. But why are these strategies important?
That’s what we’re going to discuss now. Read on to learn why implementing off-site strategies is a recipe for long-term business success!
Grow Your Traffic
As with every form of SEO, one of the main goals of off-page strategies is to grow your traffic. You want to draw users onto your site so that they can become engaged, browse your blog, check out your services, and subscribe to learn more information.
Off-page SEO is really effective at bringing in people who are already looking for services related to yours. They’re going to find your page in citations or through links on blog posts that they’re already reading. Since these blog posts or websites will be about things that relate directly to what you do, this is a good way to grab the attention of an already interested audience.
Generate Tons of Leads
Driving traffic to your page using both on-site and off-site SEO is a great way to generate leads. Most companies find leads by having people enter their information into the website, like their email address and occupation. Visitors will either do this for a reward or to sign up for a mailing list. Enabling cookies is another way that you can get this information.
However, off-site strategies do more than just getting people to give you information because they’ve seen your webpage. You can use services like Google Analytics to figure out what pages visitors have come from. A lot of them probably clicked links from other websites to get to your page, so you can see what types of link building are generating the most results.
This lets you use backlinks in a smarter and more effective way!
Your brand’s success depends upon a lot of factors outside your website – moz.com
Build Relationships With Other Businesses
One of the best things about off-page SEO is that it lets you form relationships with other businesses. When you have someone link to you or decide to use someone’s blog post as a backlink, this obviously establishes a relationship between your websites. Maybe more importantly, though, it establishes a relationship between you as businesses!
Backlinking is a mutually beneficial relationship that all parties benefit from. Because of this, sites that you link to (and vice versa) are likely to have positive feelings about your business. This will make it more likely that you can work together in the future and build one another up professionally!
How to Crush to Competition With Off-Site SEO
There are a couple of ways that you can implement off-site strategies for your webpage.
The first is called ‘DIY SEO, which is pretty self-explanatory
If you do choose this option, there are tools and resources that exist to help you! On our website, in fact, we have keyword analysis and ranking checker tools to help you with on-site manipulations. However, we also have resources that you can read and learn from that help you establish firm off-site connections and grow with link building.
However, DIY SEO is a lot of work, and an expert may be able to optimise your webpage more effectively. If you think this is true, then a professional SEO package is probably the right option for you.
When you purchase an affordable package from us, experts will take care of all the dirty work for you. They’ll do research on what backlinks are best for your site and pair you with blogs for guest posting if you want. When professional content is produced for your website and social media pages, your readers are sure to be engaged!
So, what is off-page SEO, exactly?
Basically, it’s a way to get more traffic on your site by working on external, off-site factors!
Check out the free SEO resources that we offer on our website. Here, you can also sign up for our mailing letter to get regular access to exclusive SEO tools, information, and resources. We’re committed to helping you make your site the best that it can be whether you want to DIY your page or get professional help.
We look forward to hearing from you ASAP!