Link Building and the Art of Saying ‘No’
All link builders have a growing appetite for links. It seems that they’re biologically programmed to crave for quality links that bring value to their clients. They’re always looking forward to building more and more good links and adding them to their reports. Having scored an amazing link, any link builder feels happy, excited… and even a bit giddy.
Capturing a quality link in the world obsessed with websites, apps and social networks seems like a simple and straightforward process. You only need to say ‘yes’ whenever people send you pages and content to link to – and the link is yours. Yet, often it’s quite the other way around.
‘Yes’ is the most important word in link building. You do need to grab good content and quality pages whenever you have a chance. After all, you have a sound link building strategy to create. Yet, you have to say ‘no’ too, sometimes far more often than you’d like to.
Let’s figure out when and why you need to say ‘no’ in link building.
Saying ‘No’ to Links
While it’s a no-brainer that you can’t say ‘yes’ every time you see a link ripe for the taking, we often behave as if all links were created for our sake. Don’t fool yourself.
Whenever you want to say ‘yes’ to a link, ask yourself if it’s justified. Is it the right thing to do? What do I get from this link in the long run? Always make well-grounded decisions.
Saying ‘yes’ to a link is always tempting, especially if it looks like a quality one. It’s hard to say ‘no’ to ripe links right in front of you, but such links are often scams and should be avoided at any cost. Think twice before you use a link that looks perfectly normal at a first glance.
Basically, you should always say ‘no’ to the following links:
– Links that aren’t relevant. Relevant links are what you’re looking for. If you have an irrelevant link with high domain authority and a relevant link with low domain authority, always choose the second one. Getting not relevant links may be a piece of pie, yet it’s not an option for success.
– Links that make no sense. Every website and each website page has its context. It’s crucial that your links have the same context as the pages you link them to. Having quality links that make no sense may be good for your traffic but bad for your users. You simply mislead them and make them waste their precious time and effort. Nobody likes that.
– Links that are manipulative. It’s not about black or grey hat link building here but about disguised links. These links are generated to manipulate webmasters and link builders to use them. Although they’re mainly harmless, they can lower your profile in the eyes of webmasters. Using them is a bad practice, so just stay away.
– Links that aren’t good quality. All-links-are-valuable policy is going to hurt your link building strategy in the long run. Therefore, say ‘no’ to links from irrelevant, spammy and rarely used websites. Ask to remove the links or for a no-follow as soon as you discover them linked to your content. If asking doesn’t work, use the disavow tool.
Saying ‘No’ to Your Colleagues and Boss
Link builders rarely answer to themselves. In-house link builders usually report to marketing managers or CEOs who just know nothing about link building but only care about the volume of links. They have no idea that you could have built dozens of links last month but had to say ‘no’. They don’t know that a single quality link creates more traffic and money than dozens of irrelevant, spammy ones.
If your boss demands that you get more links of any quality at all costs, say ‘no.’ Low-rank links with irrelevant context won’t do you (or your website) any good. Just explain to your boss, marketing manager, or your client that getting more satisfactory links is unrealistic now. Don’t be afraid to say that you can’t deliver. After all, it’s not your fault that salespeople will promise almost anything to keep clients.
The important part here is that you must explain yourself. Provide a detailed explanation of why quality links matter and other ones don’t in a respectful manner. Your boss will get what you mean, most likely.
Explain Saying ‘No’
You can’t just say ‘no’ without explaining yourself. Your boss and your managers aren’t interested in a professional who doesn’t bring value. It’s a natural for them to think that you’re bad at what you’re doing if you don’t build enough links every month.
Don’t wait until you’re fired – speak up. Explain how you bring value to your company and why it takes so much time to build a quality link. Break down what quality links are and why it’s crucial to use them. Tell your boss that your job is about cherry picking, not buying in bulk.
Don’t forget that your boss and managers don’t know much about link building, but you do. That’s why, never miss a chance to explain your job. Ensure that you use plain English, though.
A successful link building strategy is based on deep thought and analysis. Saying ‘yes’ is what we always strive for, yet ‘no’ is often one and only feasible option. Use links that make sense.
We want more amazing links, but we shouldn’t forget that value comes first. That’s why, focus on integrity. Relevant links with proper context is what you need. Don’t use quality links if they don’t work for your link building goals.
Ensure your colleagues and your boss know that your job brings value to the company. They should be aware that in link building quality is far more important than quantity.
Anyway, saying ‘no’ is inevitable. It’s harder than it seems, yet it makes every ‘yes’ a balm to your soul.