Off-page SEO refers to certain techniques to improve the position of a website in the search engine results pages.
Many people associate Off-page SEO with the creation of backlinks, but it’s not only that.
A better explanation regarding the site’s position on obtaining backlinks:
Today, Off-page SEO is to promote the contents of your website in order to build trust with your audience. This trust is won, users will naturally refer to your content if they are of good quality. As a result, you naturally get backlinks
But before, let’s start from the beginning …
What is Search Engine Optimization?
Search engine optimization or SEO is one of the 6 channels of Digital Marketing.
Specifically, SEO is a set of techniques to optimize a website and its content for search engines.
The goal is to put your web pages back in search engine results pages like Google.
SEO is therefore vital for:
- Gain visibility on search engines,
- Attract qualified visitors,
- But also give credibility to your content.
Search engines use complex algorithms to:
- Determine the pages to include in their index,
- Then sort these pages in the search results.
Optimizing a website for search engines breaks down into 3 subdomains:
- The ‘On page’ SEO,
- The ‘Off page’ SEO,
- And the ‘Technical’ SEO.
The ‘On-Page SEO’ or SEO on your pages
The ‘On-Page SEO’ groups the actions to take on each page of your website so that they are properly optimized for search engines.
Here are some examples of these actions:
- Work on your titles and meta descriptions,
- Structure your URLs carefully,
- Insert internal links naturally,
- Cut out your text in chapters with subtitles,
- Optimize your images …
Find all these tips in this article: On page SEO: 11 techniques to boost your rankings.
Technical SEO makes it easier for search engines to crawl and index your website.
Indeed, search engines run crawlers on websites to retrieve certain information in their index.
This information is then used to rank the different pages according to keywords typed by users.
By working on your technical SEO, you help search engines to better access, analyze, interpret and index your website.
The actions to be carried out, therefore, optimize the infrastructure of your website without taking into account its content or its promotion.
That’s why Digital Marketing experts talk about technical SEO.
Find here my checklist of the 15 points of control of Technical SEO.
Off page SEO or SEO outside your site
Finally, the Off-page SEO includes all activities to be conducted outside your website, that is to say on other sites than yours.
Concretely, you carry out actions of promotion of the contents on your Web site to obtain a maximum of the inbound links (or Backlinks).
The purpose of this article is to review all these promotional actions to work your ‘Off-page SEO’.
But first, discover the benefits of working your ‘Off-page SEO’.
Why work on your ‘Off-Page SEO’ is important?
Search engines are always looking to return the best results for users.
To do this, they rely on complex and secret algorithms.
However, Digital Marketing experts have counted more than 200 factors in the Google ranking system.
Among these factors, several are used to measure the authority of your website or its popularity.
The popularity of your site is proportional to the number of references that your site has on other sites.
In fact, if another site refers to one of your contents, it means that they find it relevant to the point of wanting to refer to it. It acts as a ‘vote’ of trust.
In addition, all these links on other sites also provide visibility.
Indeed, a user visiting another site referring to one of your content can click on this link and visit your website.
That’s why the main activities around the ‘Off-Page SEO’ are to promote your website to give it visibility and gain confidence before collecting ‘votes’.
2 main advantages of ‘Off-page SEO’
By getting all these references on other sites, the traffic of your website will naturally increase:
- More traffic from the search engines. Your rankings in the results pages go up as search engine algorithms take into account the number and quality of backlinks,
- More traffic following the exposure of your links. Each link on a third-party site is likely to be clicked by users. You are de facto getting a small share of the traffic from all these sites. SEO experts refer to this acquisition of traffic as ‘Link Juice’.
Obviously, to conquer new customers, it is necessary that this ‘link juice’ generates qualified traffic.
So this is an aspect to take into account as soon as you work your ‘Off-page SEO’.
Create backlinks yourself
We have seen that Google considers a link from another website to your site as a ‘vote’ of trust.
So why not ‘vote’ for yourself!
Over the years, webmasters have created their own backlinks by ‘inventing’ multiple ways to increase their number of inbound links.
Some of these methods are even doubtful. Digital Marketing experts call them ‘Black Hat SEO’.
Since the so-called Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird updates, Google’s algorithm identifies these non-natural incoming links.
Entrepreneurs who use these methods have their website penalized. And if you abuse, Google can even stop indexing your website!
And also totally shares my point of view on this subject.
The attribute ‘Follow’ or ‘no follow’
In order to give webmasters a way to connect to a website without passing the ‘link juice’, search engines have introduced the ‘no follow’ attribute for links.
This is an HTML attribute to add to a link like this:
<a href=http://www.mywebsite.com rel=’nofollow’> Click here </a>
This no follow attribute tells search engines not to consider this link as a ‘vote of confidence’ for the referenced website.
Nofollow has been introduced to connect you to other sites from your own without going for a follower of the ‘Black Hat SEO’.
Tip’s advice: add the no-follow tag on all your external links in your pages that point to websites in which you do not fully trust. For example: on all links inserted by users in your comments. This is also useful for ad links.
What is a good backlink?
First of all, the creation of backlinks is not only a question of quantity, but it is also a question of quality.
Indeed, no matter how many inbound links point to your website, it’s more important where these backlinks come from.
Indeed, backlinks are not born equal.
A single link from a high authority site like lemonde.fr has more weight than several backlinks on many sites of low authority.
Your goal with the ‘Off Page SEO’ is to get inbound links from websites with strong authority.
So how to get inbound links of good quality?
Google talks about ‘natural’ inbound links.
The ‘natural’ backlinks correspond exactly to what their qualifier implies.
The owner of a website appreciates the content on another website and naturally adds a link to his website.
Thus, to generate good quality backlinks, you need to create useful and relevant content that other users want to cite in their own content.
And since this is a ‘vote of confidence’, you must do everything first to make people trust you.
And so, here are the 5 winning techniques to succeed your ‘SEO Off Page’.
On the same topic 7 practical steps to increase your domain authority
5 tactics that work to create quality backlinks
Since you are looking to generate qualified traffic, put yourself in the shoes of your personas (or target audience).
Indeed, if you know exactly which websites your audience connect regularly, you gain in efficiency and especially a lot of time.
The results are immediate:
- More mentions for your company,
- More ‘natural’ backlinks,
- Greater trust of your target audience,
- Diversified incoming links from many sites …
1. Being present where your customers are
Suppose you work for GNM Digital Agency.
Our target client is an entrepreneur seeking to gain visitors and turnover with his website.
Our target is therefore essentially composed of:
- Entrepreneurs or business owners,
- Marketing managers within companies.
These people regularly visit sites such as:
LinkedIn, Medium …
Twitter, Facebook …
Reddit, Quora …
Joining communities and getting involved in conversations
By joining these communities and getting involved in the discussions, we put forward our comment directly to our target.
We also republish our articles on medium.
And also on Reddit.
This is not wild promotion. We seek to engage in a conversation and solve their problems. So you get to refer to your product or service in the ‘answers’. I even sometimes do not mention GNM.
Here is the principle to respect:
Always add value to the discussion. In the short term, you get inbound links of low value since your links on these platforms are in no-follow.
This has a direct impact on your SEO. But your direct traffic will increase since you address your target audience …
As you go along, you are seen as an expert in your field.
You win the trust of your audience. And in the end, some will refer to your content in their articles.
Comment intelligently on other content Another tactic is to insert comments on other blogs. I’m not talking about copy-pasting a standard text or inserting a link wildly in the comments.
I am talking about making useful, high value-added comments – that is, authentic, insightful and relevant …
Such comments expose your name to your target audience and this can only be beneficial for your Natural reference.
Tips advise: Watch who mentions your brand on the Internet with Google Alerts, mentions or even ahrefs. Then participate in the conversation with relevance.
2. Write guest articles
Guest blogging is not a new technique of SEO.
Obviously, it’s not about publishing articles with dozens of links pointing to your site. Moreover, with such a high level of quality, your host should not agree to publish it.
Here are the main benefits of guest articles:
- Strengthen your expertise and that of your business,
- Increase the number of mentions of your brand,
- Bring qualified traffic,
- Acquire some backlinks …
3. Reach out bloggers to build strong relationships
When I talk about contacting other bloggers, I do not mean emails that I receive every day asking me to add a link in one of my articles or to exchange links. This tactic is, in my opinion, closer to
spam than ‘awareness’. In fact, the mail goes directly to the trash.
Build a sustainable relationship.
Your goal is to build a lasting relationship with your contact.
- Monitor what is happening in your industry,
- Contact other bloggers to initiate the relationship, and earn his trust!
This usually starts with helping the other person before asking for something in return.
Then, the acquisition of backlinks becomes more simple and natural. Indeed, it’s easier to ask someone for something you have previously helped. Of course, this approach to ‘Off Page SEO’
takes a lot of time, but the benefits are clear.
Giving to receive
Here is an example lived a few months ago.
I was reading an article on Digital Marketing. And I came across a broken link that pointed to an article that seemed interesting to read.
It was not even an external link, just a badly formatted internal link. So I decided to send a quick email to the owner of the site to warn him of the problem without even asking for anything in
Obviously, the owner of the site thanked me. Since, from time to time, he retweets some of my contents without I never asked him anything.
Tips advice: Not easy to have such a result every time. But put all the odds on your side, with really personalized emails, not just the first name.
Start by thanking the people who mentioned your content. Few of your competitors do it and you stand out immediately. And often, the relationship is maintained.
Here are 3 ideas for building lasting relationships through promotion:
- Inform people about problems encountered on their website:
- broken links,
- spelling errors …
Thank people who have referred you to your content,
Ask relevant questions to the people you want to reach …
Especially ask for nothing until the initial relationship has been established. Apply the ‘Give to Receive’ principle that is most effective on getting your ‘Off Page SEO’ done!
4. Working your ‘local SEO’ is also part of the ‘Off Page SEO’
If you receive your customers and prospects in your offices, local SEO is essential to attract new customers.
The reputation of this type of company is based on ‘word of mouth’. And in Digital Marketing, ‘word of mouth’ is materialized by the opinions we leave on the Internet.
Being well referenced on the sites of opinion:
Not only the satisfied customer’s deposit opinions taken into account by the algorithm of Google,
But especially, your potential customers will read them to check the seriousness of your service.
The local SEO is experiencing a significant craze, especially with the rise of smartphones.
Indeed, on a smartphone, most of the research we do has a local component.
In other words, the results are around us when we search on Google from our smartphone.
This seems logical since the next step is to either call the chosen candidate or visit him.
Tips advice: At a minimum, report your business on Google My Business, taking care to fill in all relevant information.
5. Social networks also help to some extent
Promote your content on social networks is part of the ‘Off Page SEO’.
If you think about it, Marketing on social networks is also a form of backlinks creation.
On the other hand, most of the incoming links you get on social media platforms are ‘no-follow’.
But this does not mean that they have no value.
Social media endorsements are gaining ground because the ranking factors and the appropriate configuration of social network profiles can also boost SEO.
In itself, social networks are not essential for your position in the search engines.
However, it gives you a unique opportunity to connect with customers and potential visitors.
Once again, find out which platforms your audience connect to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn … and begin to engage in conversation with them.
Remember that social networks are 2-way channels. Everything is a matter of conversation.
A special mention for Google
it is very likely that since 2011, Google uses its own network as a criterion in its algorithm when content is shared and gets a number of ‘+1’.
Developing your audience on Google+, you naturally increase a large number of ‘+1’ and your SEO seems to be best.
Make sure to create a link with your Google plus page related to your website and share your content via this channel.
Another special mention for Pinterest
Pinterest is one of the few social platforms that do not report the ‘no-follow’ links.
So every time an Internet user ‘re-pin’ one of your pins, it’s a true backlink won.
Update September 2018: this is no longer the case. The links on the images went on no-follow.
However, Pinterest’s interest in acquiring traffic is not to be questioned.
So make sure you open a pro account on Pinterest and at least share your website’s content.
Know that content types that generate the most backlinks are lists, guides, and infographics (source isglobalweb),
then, the ultimate is to make design infographics from your content and relay them on Pinterest. Use canva for this.
The content publishers are also fond of beautiful graphics to enhance their content and also it’s many earned backlinks.
Take the time to build your target audience on Pinterest, this can only increase your backlinks.
Note: you can check your backlinks and those of your competitors with tools like OpenLinkProfiler or ahrefs…
‘Off Page SEO’ is useless without a good ‘On-Page SEO’
‘Off Page SEO’ is the activity on which entrepreneurs spend the most time.
It’s quite logical given the number of places where you can promote your company’s website.
On one hand, if your ‘On-Page SEO’ is not square, all actions to win backlinks will not be used.
Suppose your website looks like the screenshot above.
Does this site inspire your confidence?
Will you create a link to this website?
All in it, this is an extreme example. But my personal point is this:
Nobody will create a link to a website that does not give confidence
In other words, if your site design dates from the 2000s, it’s probably time for a fresh facelift.
Similarly, if your website is littered with spelling or grammatical errors with outdated content information, you will never get a backlink on an authority site like searchenginewatch.com.
It does not matter how much effort you spend on it. It’s a lost in advance.
And if someone accidentally shares your content, users who come to see your site then leave immediately.
In addition, a good ‘On-Page SEO’ has a direct impact on your ‘Off Page SEO’.
Because by being well ranked in search results, more people are clicking on your content.
And if more people read your content, more people can potentially refer to it in their articles.
And if more people are referring to your articles, you get backlinks.
Tips advice: Give priority to ‘On-Page SEO’ before trying to work your ‘Off Page SEO’.
Conclusion on the 6 techniques of ‘Off Page SEO’ to boost your rankings
The ‘Off Page SEO’ is clearly extremely important, regardless of the business sector of your company.
However, it’s not just about building inbound links.
Of course, backlinks are still one of the most important criteria.
But they are only one of the 200 factors in Google’s algorithm.
Moreover, today, building links is no longer a silly and nasty process like ‘search a site, build a link, move to another site …’
The creation of quality backlinks consists in:
- Promote your content,
- Build trust,
- Establish lasting relationships with other users.
This requires first and foremost excellent content, a smooth customer experience on your website and a well optimized ‘SEO On Page’.
Do this to win.
So what is your favorite tactic to create high-quality backlinks?