20 Simple Methods to Get Inbound Links for Your Website

inbound links
Do you want to increase your search ranking? Sure you do. Pretty much everyone does. Well, this is where inbound links come in handy.

Now, when I explain how Google sees these links as votes of confidence, I always see folks nodding their heads. “Yes. Yes. Yes.”

Then I ask them how they think we should handle the link-building process.

All I get are blank stares.

I thought I’d try to help all of you out there who need some help. Here’s a list of 20 ways you can get inbound links for your website:

1. Ask for a Link Trade

I hesitate to include this one, but the truth is that it still works. However, sending an email to a blogger asking to exchange links is not very reliable. It’s just cheap and fake and fluffs. As a rule, Shout Out Studio tries real hard to avoid this type of marketing.

But if I’m trying to help someone, I’ve got to share. Now let’s move on.

2. Create Foundational Content

Create content that uses foundational information and vocabulary for the industry you want to target.

This post is an example: We wanted to create a list of all the recommended ways to handle business link-building.

That will be foundational content that will engage a broad audience. Content like this is both relevant and worth sharing.

Other examples of similar foundational content would be “Link-Building 101″ or “The Definition of Link-Building”.

3. Run a Contest Centered on Content Creation

Executing a digital contest might not sound like a ton of fun, but it can absolutely transform the online business if done right.

Your contest should involve a big payoff for participants and ask participants to create content across the web. This way, you’re going to end up with an increase in inbound links.

4. White-Hat Link Building

There are several agencies out there who specialize in building massive amounts of links for their clients. Most of these folks are submitting links to Squidoo lens and other sites they keep up with.

Beware of anyone who does this for far too little money.

Manually building these links takes time and if you’re paying $5, you’re probably getting bad service.

5. Directory Submissions

There is a load of directories across the web. Use these as places to list your website and give a business description. Here you can find a list of  Free Directory Submission Sites where you can submit your website.

Directory submissions can cost money, but it can be VERY VERY worth it.

I’ve worked with businesses who hesitated to pay to be included in a directory. Well, it was – in fact – links from those paid directories that drove new business to their site.

6. Ego Bait – Create a List of Industry Experts

“Ego Bait” is a phrase used to describe the method of enticing engagement with rewards that play to the target’s ego.

This is how it works:

  • Create a list of the top 20 bloggers within your industry
  • Create a page on your website with a list and description of the blogs. Be sure to include links to their site
  • Create a sidebar badge that those bloggers can place within their sidebar
  • Lastly, contact each blog alerting them to their inclusion on the list and share the badge with them. Most bloggers love showing these on their sidebar or “about” page.

7. Think like a Publicist

Getting yourself some larger press coverage can produce a load of potential inbound links. Getting yourself mentioned on an industry website or even within the newspaper can build links back to your site.

8. Guest Post on another Site

Many bloggers love to have others help them create content. Find relevant blogs and see if they’ll allow you to guest post. Have two or three articles ready to go when you approach the blog.

Ensure that your proposed content fits will be relevant to their audience.

Almost 100% of guest blog posts include links pointed to the author’s website.

Make sure you optimize them first by using the best keywords

9. Syndicate Articles

There are many places for you to syndicate your blog content across other channels. Folks in the SEO community often disagree on the effectiveness of syndicating articles. Google penalizes for duplicate content across the web but rewards inbound links.

Shout Out Studio doesn’t recommend this method to our clients, but I know folks that have used it very successfully.

If you’re looking for places to syndicate your RSS feed, the Social Media Today Community is a great place to start.

10. Publish Press Releases

To release online Press Releases, you can use services such as:

It can put information about your business in the hands of journalists who can distribute the content all over the web.

These articles can include links back to your site. Thus, you could earn thousands of inbound links if these online press releases get distributed well.

11. Submit an Article to an Industry News Site

It’s similar to guest posting. However, it focuses on reaching out to some of the top industry blogs and submitting an interesting/timely article. That will enable you to receive an inbound link.

Links that get in front of your targeted audience are great for search, but the referral traffic is even better.

How to optimize your articles for both Search Engines bots and Humans

12. Think like a Local Business

Grab links from your local Chamber of Commerce, the Better Business Bureau, and the local library. They are considered trustworthy by the local community and your site can benefit from getting exposure on them.

13. Use Your Partners

Develop business relationships with non-competing businesses in the same field.

You can use these relationships online and offline. For instance, you can share links and distribute each other’s business cards.

Manufacturers, vendors or retailers associated with your business may be willing to link to you from their website. That’s especially true if you write a review or conduct an interview with them.

14. Answer Questions to Get Inbound Links

Sites like Yahoo! Answers, Quora & Google Groups allow you to respond to questions. That gives you an opportunity to provide relevant links back to your site within your answer.

Answering questions effectively will give you credibility in front of a potential audience. Also, you’ll gain inspiration for future blog posts by

15. Use the Pro Link-Builder’s Secret Weapon: Squidoo

Link building agencies often just add links to your website from pages they curate on Squidoo. Well, did you know it only takes 15 minutes to set up a topical Squidoo page?

Be sure to include expert information and popular, useful tools for your field. Also, don’t forget to link back to your website.

16. Build a Collection of Tools

Folks are often searching for useful online tools. Whether it’s SEO tools, mortgage calculators or Body Fat Calculators, these are valuable for them. Plus, they often love to share with their audience.

So, start building an information-rich list of tools relevant for your audience. That can earn you some really powerful inbound links. 

17. Review Products, Apps, and Services

Write a thorough review of an iPhone app, relevant service or a product. Companies are always looking for case studies and testimonials.

After writing your review on your site, be sure to contact the provider to let them know about the review. Also, give them permission to share the content however they want to.

18. Give Away Free Samples

I’ve worked with several companies that have created thousands of links to their site by giving away free samples.

These companies had their giveaways picked-up on “freebie” and “couponing” websites. For hundreds of dollars, these sites received thousands of dollars worth of inbound links.

19. Make Sure You’ve Got Those Social Profiles Filled out

Search engines are relying heavily on social networks to verify and give authority to their rankings.

If you have profiles filled out on relevant websites, you’re letting search engines know you’re legitimate. Also, most profiles allow you to link back to your site.

20. Let People Share Your Content

Creating great content is critical. Making sure it’s share-worthy should be at the forefront of your mind when scheming new ideas for images, blog posts & videos.

The next thing you should do is communicate clearly that you’re OK with folks sharing/using your content & images. However, specify that they need to attribute the content with a link back to you.

If you’re using original content, this will help you spread your content as well as increase inbound links for your site. (Special thanks goes to InboundMarketingAgents.com for this idea!)


If you start with this list and work through even a few of these steps, I’m sure you’ll be amazed at the difference in the referral traffic and search engine traffic you receive.

Read more:

7 Surprising Numbers That Will Empower Your WordPress SEO

 How your SEO techniques and Social Media Strategy Intertwine