Does it matter which external links you use in your blog?

using external links in your blog post

A guest post by Steve Conway. 

As you begin your journey towards creating your own blog, your main purpose is obviously to get noticed and receive plenty of traffic. There are lots of tips available to help you with this, and one is using external links.

Maybe you’ve already started experimenting with gathering external links onto your blog, or perhaps you have yet to give it a shot and you’re wondering how to go about it.

However, it’s worth considering which links you should choose. Are there ‘good’ and ‘bad’ links? How do you determine which is which? Here’s a look at the basics of the proper use of external links in blogs.

Why you should consider using external links

To answer the question “Why use external links?”, you need to refer to what you are hoping to accomplish by gaining them in the first place.

One answer would be that it helps boost Google search ratings. Another will be about increasing traffic. Or maybe it’s just because other blogs have external links and yours also needs them.

In fact, external links play a vital role when writing content and for your blog as a whole. It is literally a link to another website, taking the reader to a different webpage that isn’t affiliated with your blog.

These links need to provide your readers with relevant value from additional information that backs up your subject matter. This should give you and your blog credibility, and help you come across an expert. Randomly picking an external link for the sake of including one in your post won’t satisfy the above criteria.

What kind of link building is there?

First you need to create excellent content before you find highly relevant corresponding websites to link to. The more relevant they are the better. Also the higher ranking the external website is, the more ‘Google Juice’ you will receive.

Link building can be done textually within content, to and from interactive engagement on social media, and to other media such as videos on YouTube that attract a large audience.

Link building also can be accomplished through guest posting, especially if you choose a suitable blog host that has a highly relevant and enthusiastic readership.

However, it is worth checking your external links regularly to make sure they don’t become ‘broken’, as this could have a negative effect on your external link building strategy.

Why link building needs to be done properly

It’s important to properly focus on targeted link building to help enhance your blog’s performance. This isn’t something that can be learned overnight, as research and experience is required to get it right.

A good idea would be to consult with a professional link building service such as Click Intelligence, who can offer plenty of experience when it comes to including external links in blog posts.

Common mistakes people make with link building

Without proper direction, you could end up choosing the wrong external links. This can be detrimental to your blog and your credibility, and in turn considerably reduce traffic to your blog.

Once the damage is done, it can be well nigh impossible to repair it. For example, you need to make sure you never link to undisclosed paid advertising or to unmonitored links that are typically user-generated.

Also you need to stop your readers from posting their own external links in your comments, as this will annoy your other readers. Suitable moderation systems will help here.

While it’s important not to shy away from using external links in your blog posts and website in general, it’s also imperative you give some thought as to which links you should use, and whether they are relevant and helpful to your readers.

And what about you?

Do you add external links to your posts? Having plugins that generate relevant internal links to your other posts may not be enough. It’s worth building on your outside connections as well. Let us know what you do in the comment box below.

About the author:

Steve Conway is a content marketing professional and inbound marketing expert. Previously Steve worked as a marketing manager for a tech software start-up. He is passionate about discovering new software that will that will advance his already well-honed digital marketing techniques.

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Alice Elliott writes the award winning Fairy Blog Mother blog for beginner and post-beginner bloggers to “explain things really simply” about blogging and WordPress. She provides simple, easy to understand, highly visual courses and tutorials using ordinary, everyday words. Visit her new Beginner Bloggers blog to find her latest learning resources.
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  • As a suggestion from my WordPress Yoast SEO plugin I was confused about why I would be wanting to drive traffic away – this post has helped me ‘get it’! Many thanks!

    • Thank you Scott for your comment. I’m glad you now understand the power of linking, both internal and external, within your posts to enhance your SEO.

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