Ecommerce is one of Australia’s fastest growing industries. In fact, revenue from ecommerce is expected to show an annual growth rate of 8.8% and according statistics portal, Statista, there’s no stop in sight.Ecommerce sales are expected to rise to $2.8 trillion in 2018 and $4.5 trillion in 2021.
With ecommerce growing at the speed of light in Australia, there’s increasing competition among online business owners, and it’s a race to see who can get to the top of Google’s search results the fastest.
Whoever gets the top spot gets seen more by customers and we all know what that means…
Lots and lots of sales.
One of the most effective SEO methods of reaching the top of search results is link building i.e. getting other websites to link to your own. Google sees these links as an overwhelming indicator that your business is trustworthy, popular, and worth ranking higher than competitors, so the more relevant backlinks, the better.
Want to learn how to build tonnes of backlinks and smash the competition? Keep reading!
#1. Membership links
We all love a sneaky discount.
We love them even more when it’s a reward for our long-time loyalty!
One of the most popular methods of link building for ecommerce business owners is membership links - think student discounts, insurance discounts, health fund discounts, and more. Any organisation serving members or students is an opportunity for a backlink.
For example, check out the AHM Member Offers page.
AHM health fund members get discounts on glasses at Specsavers, discounts on Active Life Health Club memberships, and “date night” 2-for-1 movie tickets from Hoyts.
Click through to any of these offers and you’ll find a link to the business offering the discount.
The same goes for Afterpay. Customers don’t get a discount from using Afterpay, but they can access businesses who offer Afterpay on the homepage, and the platform advertises sales for businesses, too.
Team up with a similar organisation, provide an exclusive discount code or offer, and get a link on their website.
#2. Charities, sponsorships and donations
Ever sponsored a local little-league team, or donated cash to a good cause like Beyond Blue?
We salute you.
Gorilla 360 is big on donating to charities and we aim to take part in a charity event once a month. Nathan even shaved his head for the Leukaemia Foundation in March!
Sponsoring kids sports teams and good samaritans is a super good deed. Likewise with donating to charities… so why not share the positive news with the world?
After sponsoring or donating to a good cause, consider asking the organisation or group for a backlink on their website, even on their “Friends” or “Sponsors” page.
For them, it will show the world they’ve got support and people in need will receive the help they need.
For you, it will trickle through into more website traffic, potential sales, and a higher ranking in search results.
Make sure to provide a picture of your team, too - this makes your donation seem more personal, plus gives the organisation incentive to share your contribution on their website or social media pages.
#3. Contests and giveaways
Contests and giveaways are a fun way to build links to your business.
Giveaways stir up a bit of excitement online - who doesn’t want a chance to win prizes, or even some cash? When shared and advertised on social media, your giveaway is almost guaranteed to spark some interest in your business online, and by guiding your customers to click through to your website to enter, you’re bound to increase traffic and even sales!
Contests are also a golden opportunity to build some high quality links to your website, showing Google you’re one of the most popular kids on the block.
Consider getting some social influencers involved - they might have some goodies to giveaway, too! They already have massive audiences following them online, so collaborate on a giveaway, then ask them to share your advertising material via social media. Your giveaway will reach thousands of new potential customers!
Give people some incentive to share your link on social media with a sneaky discount or more chances to win a prize.
#4. Guest blogging
Guest blogging is another fun method of building backlinks to your website.
Guest blogging involves writing an industry relevant blog post that links to your own website, then submitting the blog to another website.
For example, a women’s clothing store might write a blog about top styles for summer, include an image of a dress within the blog which links to the store, and then submit it to a fashion blogger to be published online.
Guest blogs also have a number of other benefits including:
- New, targeted traffic
- Building links from quality domains
- Building name and brand recognition
- Developing social proof and an online footprint.
To find blogs that accept submissions, try searching the following on Google:
- “[your keyword e.g. Prada Handbag]” + “write for us”
- “[your keyword]” + “guest post/blogging guidelines”
- “[your keyword]” + “contribute”
#5. Blogger reviews
Bloggers are becoming more and more powerful in the online space. Some bloggers, like Rand Fishkin from Moz, have hundreds of thousands of readers and supporters online, even going on to create bigger careers for themselves from web development, fashion designing, and authorship - depending on their topic.
Bloggers are a valuable resource for a potential backlink, but you’re going to have to give them a little incentive to get the link.
For example, fashion bloggers might be more inclined to write a review if you send them a sample of your product, like moisturiser or beauty products, along with a gift.
Before you start sending presents to random bloggers, however, remember to start a conversation with them online first, or even contact their marketing email and drum up a phone meeting. Create a positive relationship first and introduce yourself.
...it might nudge them to be extra nice to your product!
#6. Fix broken links
I know what you’re thinking.
“What the heck is a broken link and HOW DID IT GET BROKEN?”
As it turns out, links are fragile things. Change one letter in a URL and bam, the link is gone.
For example, imagine our URL was once http://www.gorilla361.com/ (it wasn’t, but humour me).
It goes nowhere, right?
Now change the URL to https://www.gorilla360.com.au/. It’s working again! Woo!
Backlinks can be “broken” from the smallest of URL changes, even going from HTTP to HTTPS. A guaranteed method of getting backlinks is scouring through existing backlinks and finding areas for improvement or link changes.
You can view all of your existing backlinks using an online program called Majestic. Simply plug in your website URL, search, and select backlinks. Majestic will tell you which backlinks require updating.
If you’ve already read our supplier and business contacts blog, you’re going to be a wizard with this section. If not, listen up - there’s much to learn.
Supplier backlinks are links from the designers, inventors, or builders of the products you sell online. For example, Rebel Sports would be able to get a link from Adidas because Rebel sells their shoes and sportswear.
Asking businesses and suppliers you’ve worked with before is one of the fastest, easiest methods of collecting backlinks. You know these businesses. You’ve spoken with their representatives. You purchase stock from them on a regular basis and more than anything, you’re ‘repping their brand online.
Why not ask for a link?
Put on your balaclava. We’re going link robbing.
Competitors and/or businesses out-ranking you in search results are probably overflowing with backlinks. You can find potential backlinks by crawling a competitor’s website using tools like SEMRush (paid) and Moz’s Open Site Explorer (free but upgradable). This software helps you view your competitor’s backlinks, their domain authorities, the type of links, and more.
Odds are, the websites who linked to your competitor can give you a link as well being a similar industry or business, so scour their backlinks and make shortlist before starting outreach.
Remember, you want quality backlinks, not backlinks with lots of ads!
#9. Links and resource pages
Most websites have a links and/or resource page to provide customers with more information about the business and industries. For example, a sportswear website might have links to bloggers or sports teams donning their gear.
Think about similar businesses to yours, suppliers, business contacts, and more, then consider the following:
- Will my business provide value for their customers?
- Is there a place here for my link?
Make sure you’re adding value to their website before reaching out for a link, otherwise you might get knocked back.
Backlinks are essential for better traffic and in turn, better sales
Ecommerce is becoming more and more competitive as time goes on. Aussie ecommerce sales per year are skyrocketing into the trillions and these results are expected to keep on improving in coming years.
In order to compete, you’re going to need to rank better than your competitors in Google’s search results. Research shows that businesses and websites in the first organic position in search results get 20.5% of traffic, meaning out of 100 people, 20 people are guaranteed to click through to their website.
Backlinks are one of Google’s top three ranking factors, so it’s essential to build backlinks if you want to reach the top and take the lion’s share of customers.