3 Strategies To Build Contextual Backlinks To Your Website For Free

By Lauren Gaggioli

Trying to increase your organic search traffic but hitting a bit of a wall?

SEO is incredibly important for small business for a number of reasons. And there are numerous SEO principles that you can leverage to grow your online presence. But if you've been taking focused action on building your website's rank in the SERPs and you're not sure why more people aren't coming to your digital door, there are a number of possible reasons. 

Yes, first and foremost, any healthy online business needs a robust organic marketing ecosystem that starts with your website. But how your site integrates to the rest of the internet matters just as much as what’s on your site and how it’s organized. 

And those points of connection are the element I see that is most often overlooked by those who are new to the organic growth game. 

How your website connects with the rest of the internet ecosystem matters. 

And the best way you can integrate with other websites is to generate contextual backlinks, that is, backlinks embedded in unique content throughout the web. 

Why Are Contextual Backlinks Important?

Contextual backlinks help you grow your website’s E-E-A-T (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness) in Google’s eyes.

The more Google trusts your website as a high quality source of information, the more likely it is to elevate your website in organic search.

But this SEO strategy requires you to get outside of your own little ecosystem.

How To Build Contextual Backlinks To Your Website For Free

Whether you’re at the beginning of the SEO journey or you’ve been traveling this road for a while, taking a look at your number and quality of backlinks is one of the most important ways to ensure your website is found in more searches. 

So this article is all about helping you figure out how to build quality contextual backlinks for free. 

As an organic content strategist and SEO expert who specializes in providing SEO services to small businesses, my favorite thing is to help you - my fellow entrepreneur - find strangers on the internet with ease and turn them into happy clients. 

And building your website’s domain authority is an incredibly important piece of the puzzle.

Just as no man is an island, no website can thrive without connection to other websites. And the way others connect to your website is through backlinks. There are three strategies you can leverage immediately to begin to get more backlinks to your site, boost your online authority, and increase your global exposure:

  1. Write guest blogs
  2. Get featured in news articles
  3. Be a guest on other people’s podcasts

Watch the video below or read on to find out which of these is my very favorite and why I find it to be the most effective…

1. Guest Blog To Build Contextual Backlinks To Your Website

To some, the idea of guest blogging might seem like an old-time-y strategy by internet standards…

But I promise it’s a go-to for a reason. 

With guest blogging you’re able to:

  • Control the backlinks

    • Which page(s) do you want elevated?

    • Which keyword(s) do you want targeted? 

  • Connect with other people and other businesses

    • Get to know other business owners & their businesses

    • Grow both of your communities by building trustworthy bridges to other great resources

    • Be the rising tide that lifts all ships

Let’s say there's a really great page on your site that just isn't getting the traffic you want. 

You have it keyword researched and the keywords have really good metrics, but visitors are just not coming through your door! And you don't know why. 

One thing you can do is write a guest blog that features anchor text with a hyperlink to that specific page. 

That will get you not just a link back to any old page on your site, it gets you precise digital hits with context you control. 

When you set the exact phrase that you hyperlink to, you solidify what keywords are associated with the blog posts you direct to. It’s a perfect opportunity to tell Google that any time someone searches for that phrase, that keyword, you have something great to offer. You are a known, trusted authority. 

Guest blogging is also awesome because you create a connection with someone else. 

You take the heavy lift of content creation off their plate for a little while, and, as long as it's in alignment with both of your businesses, offer real benefit to both of your websites. 

Think about the people you know who work in the same domain as you. 

Why not offer a blog swap where you both help each other out by giving backlinks to elevate relevant, helpful posts that you really want to rank well in online searches?

It’s a win-win-win scenario for you, the other business, and both of your audiences. 

2. Get Featured In News Articles

Another thing you can do is try to get featured in news articles that are in alignment with your endeavors and allow you to be a voice of expertise on someone else's news site. 

Want help finding these opportunities?

Try apps like:

Be aware, however, that this method is extremely fast paced. 

I did it religiously for a while and did not find great success because I couldn't dedicate the time to watching for the emails, then reacting to them quickly. 

But if you have the time to do it and you can pitch well, there's a very real chance you can show up in articles where you're getting backlinks from extremely elevated sites (AKA sites with really strong domain authority in your area of expertise!). 

This is like Internet gold.

If you can be the first person to get in touch and optimize your opportunities, I highly recommend this strategy for you.

3. Be A Guest On Other People’s Podcasts 

My very favorite strategy of all is to be a guest on other people's podcasts. 

It's the easiest way to get a great backlink!

Being a podcast guest, you’re able to:

  • Have fun conversing and collaborating 

  • Access an endless river of opportunities (podcasters always need more podcasts and they’re not afraid of repeat guests!)

  • Get data and interactive feedback based on the podcaster’s questions and reactions

  • Serve an audience outside of the one you already serve

    • Expanding your reach through the podcaster’s website and social media

    • Expanding your reach through the podcaster’s listening audience

  • Connect and create at your own pace

    • Faster than writing a blog

    • Slower than reporters with urgent, unyielding deadlines 

The more comfortable you get with it, the less time and stress it will cost you to guest podcast - especially compared to having to write/edit/publish content on your site (nudge, nudge, anyone who doesn’t love creating content).

And it’s not impossible to find great event partnerships, great content ideas, and even new friends as you interact with other entrepreneurs all over the world.

Bonus points: the popularity of podcasting is only increasing! 

In the last year alone, I’ve already grown my domain authority by two points, and I expect it's going to go up at least another two by the end of the year because I have done so many interviews. 

The tool I’ve used to complete more than 20 episodes in the last 9 months is PodMatch.

I highly recommend PodMatch (BTW, this is an affiliate link - you’ll notice I don’t have very many of them, but I believe so much in this particular service it was a no-brainer). 

If you are unfamiliar with this tool, imagine your favorite dating service, but instead of going on a date, you get matched to go on someone's show. With three matches at a time, you get to choose whether you pitch to them, save them for later, or pass on the match and wait to find a different one down the road. 

As a busy mom, I like how PodMatch puts me in the driver’s seat. 

It lets me find podcasters who are in great alignment with what I do and the message that I have to share. 

It lets me go as fast or as slow as my business and I need.

Hope to see you in the PodMatch ecosystem!

Ready To Add Backlinks To Your Website For Free?

Remember: the more quality contextual backlinks you can build to your website, the more domain authority you can generate. The more domain authority you have, the more Google & other search engines will send new customers your way. 

All three of these fantastic backlink building opportunities come down to what you need and value most, or what you have the bandwidth for right now. 

There's nothing that says you have to put all your eggs in a single backlink-building basket. 

Pick one and go full tilt or alternate doing all three.

But the main point is: you do need backlinks. And, in order for them to grow your domain authority, they need to be quality, contextual backlinks.

Do You Know Your Website’s Current Domain Authority?

If you’re excited to grow your domain authority and get into the organic marketing ecosystem in a more meaningful way, that’s great.

But hold your horses! 

One critical component of SEO and organic marketing in general is benchmarking your website now so you can track your progress over time.

Building backlinks and growing your domain authority will be all the more enticing when you can see the direct correlation between increased authority and increased organic traffic.

To benchmark your website today for free, sign up for my DIY Website Audit. In this free 3-part mini course I’ll share some of my favorite free SEO tools and show you how I use them, and you’ll be on your way to greater organic marketing success in no time!