How to Build Backlinks for an Ecommerce Store [WITHOUT GUEST BLOGGING]
In case you don’t already know – a backlink is a link from one website to another. Google (and other search engines) use backlinks as a way to determine a site’s authority. The thinking behind this is – if a website has high-quality content, other websites will want to link to them.
In the past, Google looked at the number of backlinks to a site to determine its authority. That encouraged link-building strategies that focused on getting any website to link to yours. However, now Google is looking at the quality of the backlinks.
That means you need high-quality backlinks. The quality of a backlink is related to the relevance of the content and the authority of the site. So, if your website sells fishing tackle, you need links from popular websites about fishing. A link from a website about cycling that hasn’t posted anything in months is a low-quality backlink.
Table of Contents
Checklist for a high-quality backlink:
In this article, we’re going to look at five link-building strategies specifically for ecommerce. And none of the strategies includes guest blogging!
Get listed on a 'Where To Buy' section
This strategy is designed for ecommerce sellers that use outsourced manufacturers (you buy your products from a manufacturer and sell them on).
Have you ever been to a clothing website and found that they don’t actually sell the clothes? This is quite common for large-scale manufacturers. Chances are, somewhere on the manufacturer’s website, there is a ‘Where To Buy’ section.
Visit the manufacturer’s website and search for the ‘Where To Buy’ section. If the manufacturer doesn’t sell straight to consumers, they will often link out to companies that sell their products. Contact them and ask to be listed as an approved retailer (or stockist).
This will drive referral traffic and footfall traffic (offline). Plus, it will provide you with a high-quality backlink.
If the manufacturer doesn’t have a ‘Where To Buy’ section, search for stockist directories online. These third-party websites list shops that sell certain products.
Here are two ways to find ‘Where To Buy’ pages:
1. Type this search query into Google (we’ve used Gucci as an example, so just replace this with the product that you’re selling):
Gucci intitle:(“where to buy” OR “stockists”)
2. Use a backlink tool – like AHRefs – to check what backlinks your competitors have. This software allows you to filter by keyword, so type ‘Where To Buy’.
Give free samples to bloggers and influencers
Bloggers and influencers are a great resource if you’re trying to build up high-quality backlinks.
Search for the most influential people in your industry and see if they’re willing to take a sample product. For bloggers, you can ask them to write a review of the product in return. Influencers are more likely to link to the product in a social media post.
Here are a few ways you can find bloggers and influencers in your industry:
1. Type this search query into Google (again, we’ve used Gucci Handbag as an example – just replace this with your product).
intitle: Gucci handbag intitle: review
2. Use Buzzsumo’s Find Influencers tool. This powerful search engine allows you to search by topic and location and offers additional analysis and outreach tools.
3. Read blogs and follow influencers. This is probably the best way to find bloggers and influencers to link to your ecommerce store. If you consume their content, you will know what kinds of products they talk about.
Here’s a basic script for your blogger and influencer outreach:
I’ve seen that you reviewed ______________.
We’ve got a very similar product that I think you’ll love. Would you mind if we sent you some samples in return for a review?
Create an affiliate programme
Bloggers and influencers are always looking for ways to monetise their content. If you create an affiliate programme, they can link to your ecommerce store in a review or social media post. Every time someone clicks on the link and then buys a product, they will get a commission. This has two benefits – it will drive traffic (and hopefully sales) for your store and create high-quality backlinks.
However, you need to consider if an affiliate programme is right for your ecommerce business. If you sell high volumes of low-priced items, the affiliate commission could eat into your profits too much.
To create an affiliate programme for your ecommerce store, you will need to download a plugin. Here are some of the best WordPress affiliate plugins (that work on both Shopify and WooCommerce):
Claiming brand mentions around the web
If you already have an established brand, there could be unclaimed link opportunities around the web. For example, if a blog post has mentioned your brand or product without linking back to your website.
To find unlinked brand mentions around the web, you need to set up an alert using:
SEMrush – This is a premium option but has an amazing link index. If you know what you’re looking for, this is the most detailed option.
Google Alerts – This FREE tool is useful to get you started but we’d recommend moving to a paid tool.
Reclaim lost backlinks
Reclaiming lost backlinks can be a quick win for your ecommerce store. These are older backlinks that have been lost because of a bad migration or Google not indexing a page anymore.
To find lost backlinks, set up lost link monitoring, I would suggest using SEMrush. This scours the web for all of your backlinks and sends you a notification if you’ve lost any backlinks.
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