SEO has become a buzzword in business and chances are that any business you come across has engaged with this practice at some point or another.
But an area of SEO that is often neglected – and that holds a whole lot of potential when it comes to establishing a website as an authority in its field – is link building.
As this specific process isn’t as well-known as the umbrella term “SEO”, it can often prove difficult to sell link building, in particular, to clients.
The good news is that it is possible to show clients the sheer potential of link building for their brand (and consequently their profits) and to encourage them to engage with this brilliant process.
Here are a few techniques that can help you to achieve this.
When it comes to encouraging a business to invest in anything, you’re going to find yourself coming face to face with a pretty large brick wall: the company’s budget.
Now, every company will have a budget for each department operating within it.
Link building is likely to fall into the hands of the marketing department and will consequently need to draw from the marketing department’s budget.
Of course, you’re going to be up against a lot of competition here. Marketing have a whole host of different areas vying for their attention and looking to use up a certain percentage of their overall budget.
When selling link building, you’re going to have to ensure that your client sees an investment in link building as more profitable for the business than an investment in print advertising, PPC marketing, collaboration with social media influencers, and a whole host of other brilliant marketing tools.
Not everyone will have heard of link building before. It’s still a relatively new form of marketing and many business will have never engaged with it themselves.
This means that you are often going to find yourself having to explain the entire concept of link building to your client before you can even begin to get into selling the service to them.
You may not necessarily be able to walk straight in with a sales pitch. After all, even the strongest sales pitch is going to prove futile if the person you’re addressing doesn’t have a clue what you’re talking about.
Make sure you have a good, clear explanation of what link building is, how link building works, and why so many companies are engaging with it.
It may be good to have some sort of powerpoint presentation to accompany your explanations.
Many people learn visually and will be able to understand a little better this way.
If your client isn’t entirely new to link building, they may already know the basics.
Going through the basics might not entice them.
To sell link building to these professionals, you’re going to have to understand their business and how link building will benefit them in particular.
Before meeting with any potential client, ensure that you have their business name and their website address.
Also ask how much work they’ve put into their SEO in the past.
Look to see how their site is currently performing.
When you search their name, where do they appear in rankings? Are they on the first page?
When you search keywords to do with their brand, products, and services, how do they fare?
If you can see how they’re currently performing, you’ll be able to show them the potential that link building can have for them in particular.
Some clients will dismiss the value of link building, claiming that they have “already taken care of” their SEO through their on-site content.
Of course, on-site content can help to improve search engine rankings.
But why do half the job?
Emphasise that link building complements current SEO campaigns.
Show that the company have already done part of the work it requires to climb the pages in Google, so why stop the job before they’ve reached their end goal?
Highlight that to simply optimise on-site SEO could prove to be a wasted investment if the company then drops SEO from its agenda.
SEO is an ongoing process that needs to be kept in motion rather than being seen as a one-off project that can be ticked off a list, and link building is the best way to keep their business on track in this field.
They can provide solid evidence of what link building can offer to a client.
You need to remember that almost any business person is going to revolve their notions of success around numbers and figures.
If you’re dealing with a business owner directly, statistics that exemplify increased overall profits thanks to link building will often be favourable.
They have the end goal of actually making money in mind.
If you’re dealing with a manager or other employed individual within an organisation, you may be better off showing more specific statistics that emphasise link building’s potential for them to hit their targets – ie. more traffic going through the site, or increased ranking in search engine results.
It’s absolutely essential that you have some set prices before meeting with a client.
This will help to give them an idea of what they can achieve with their budget.
Sure, you may find that the client ends up spending a little less or a little more with you according to their needs, their budget, and what you are willing to work for.
But it’s good to have a basic price list to approach clients with, so they have a rough idea of how much link building will cost.
Sure, your main goal overall may be actually selling link building services.
But you need to think further ahead in order to actually secure a sale.
If you’ve followed the steps above, you’re likely to have piqued your client’s interest.
But this is when they will start asking more questions about what will happen if they move forward in a link building project with you.
They may want to know:
– The number of links being distributed
– The relevance of links being distributed
– The quality of sites that links are being distributed on
– When they can expect to start seeing results
Being able to provide answers to these questions is essential.
Your best approach is to come up with a strategy for any client you’re interested in working with that will let them know exactly what you are going to be doing and when you are going to be doing it.
This will give the client comfort in knowing that their budget is being spent strategically.
It will also give them a sense of security in that they can monitor and track progress – ensuring that everything is running to plan and schedule.
Sure, link building might not be the easiest sale you ever engage with.
But it is a brilliant SEO tool that the majority of businesses could significantly benefit from engaging with.
Hopefully, the above information can help you to do link building justice and really sell its value to your next client!
Founder & Head of SEO
Published on: 8th July 2019