Quality + Consistency + Linkbacks = Lots of Readers
As I mentioned recently in the article “Analyzing RSS Subscriber Growth,” getting linked by ProBlogger earlier this summer helped propel my blog to a record growth of new readers. Of course, quality and consistency also helped increase my blog’s readership, but there is no question, receiving linkbacks on particular articles turn into massive jumps in readerships for some blogs.
So, the question becomes, what can we do to inspire other bloggers to link to us? Obviously, the most important way is to encourage more linkbacks is to write original and highly useful content. If a blogger finds your post original and useful, there is a much greater chance they will syndicate or share it. That being said, there are a few other tips and tricks to encourage other bloggers to link to your posts. I would like to share five simple ways to encourage other bloggers to link to your posts.
1. Link To Other Blogs. Simply put, what goes around, comes around. If you link to other bloggers, they will most likely notice and possibly link back to you in the future. I give out my link love in a series of posts called “Powerful Posts.” Most of the bloggers who I link to usually have linked to me in the past or end up linking to me in the future. Now that I think about it, I have a difficult time recalling a blog that I have linked to that didn’t end up linking to me at some point before or after.
2. Use the “Link To Me Textbox WordPress Plugin.” This plugin will set up a “link to me textbox” with HTML code in your blog posts and according to the author, will increase your search engine rankings. All someone has to do is copy and paste the HTML code to link to your article. I tested this plugin for a week, but I decided I had too many “widgets” listed beneath each post so I got rid of it. I did not notice a significant difference in terms of how many people linked to me, but that may have been because I only tested it for a short amount of time. It does look like an interesting tool to get people to link to you more.
3. Thank the bloggers who already link to you. Whenever I receive a trackback, I try to thank every blogger. This act of gratitude is important because it shows that you already appreciate those who do link to you. Showing gratitude is of course a great way to encourage future behavior.
4. Introduce yourself to other bloggers. If you are a new blogger, introducing yourself to other bloggers can be a quick way to “get on the radar.” Getting on other bloggers’ radars is the first step to getting them to link to you. Of course, if you email a particular blogger, it is a good idea to include a link to one of your better posts. Several bloggers have sent emails to me introducing themselves and provided a link to one of their posts. Often times it has resulted in my linking to one of their articles.
5. Feature the most recent trackback on the blog homepage. This is my next experiment. It is something that many established sites have been doing for a long time. Basically, these sites provide a link to the site that links to their site the most. Why? It encourage people to link to you. This is basically like an instant advertisement for any site that links to mine.
In case you have not already noticed, directly above the 468×60 advertising banner at the top of my page, there is a box that features the most recent trackback with a link back to the author’s site. Currently, Ed from the[ED]ition holds that position, but the next person to link to a specific article will be featured there. This was implemented using the Get Recent Comments Plugin.
I think it will be an interesting experiment to see if the “most recent trackback” encourages bloggers to link to my articles more often. Being that my blog is a Page Rank 5 and that the “Recent Trackback” spot is in a prime eyeball position (above the fold), I think it will have a positive effect. In essence, this rewards other bloggers for linking to my articles.
Receiving frequent linkbacks is vital to any new blogger’s success. If you think about it, a linkback is like a mini-testimonial to the content of your blog. The more testimonials to your site, the better it must be! As I mentioned before, the best way to encourage linkbacks is to consistently write original and highly useful content, but you might want to try some of the things I recommended above.