Find out if your link profile is strong enough to beat your local competitors in Google local ranking results and what you need to do if it isn’t.
Supercharge your small business with link power.
Have you checked the link profile of your website recently?
If you don’t know what I’m talking about you’d better stick around because this is by far the most important concept you need to understand if you want to boost your local online presence.
Hi everyone, welcome to another “one tool for your trade” session where I cover some of my favourite online tools to help you in your quest to local success.
Today I’m going to show you how to check the link profile of your site and compare it with your competitors.
But before I start, for those of you who have little to no understanding about how things work, let me quickly explain what link profile really means.
A link profile is the make-up of links pointing to your site, simple. But, yes, there is always a but, not all links are equal.
A link from your friend’s blog pointing to your site doesn’t have the same value, or strength, as a link you would get from, let’s say, an online article from the BBC. As you can imagine it’s better to get more quality links than quantity.
What we call a “link profile” is the combination of all links pointing to your site, weak and strong.
The combination of all of those links will determine the strength, or authority of your site. The more authority you have, the more likely you are to appear at the top of the search engines.
And if your local competitor’s sites have more authority than yours then you are very likely going to rank below them in search engines. But how do we check this?
Moz.com is an awesome site. These guys have a range of free tools including this “link profile” one.
In the URL field enter the address of the site you want to check. For the purpose of this exercise I am going to check an extremely powerful and popular site so you have a good understanding of what we are talking about. I’ll use wikipedia.com and click on search.
Don’t be scared by the numbers as they are very easy to understand.
The results are split into 3 categories. Authority, Page link Metrics and Page social metrics. Let’s go through the first one, Authority.
Wikipedia has a domain authority, or overall website strength if you prefer, of 100 out of 100 which is essentially as good as it gets. This means they have plenty of great links pointing to their site and that’s why they are at the top of search engines for so many queries. The page authority number is the authority of a page itself and in this case the home page as this is the address we entered in the search field.
The “Spam score” number indicates if the links they are getting maybe suspicious.
Moving on to the page link metrics.
The, just discovered metric, is the number of new links pointing to Wikipedia’s home page which have been recorded over the past 60 days which in their case is very impressive.
Under the “established links” there are two numbers. One for Root domains and one for total links.
The total links is the overall number of links pointing to Wikipedia’s home page which is insanely big hence the reason they score a domain authority of 100.
Moving on to root domain. This is the number of Links coming from unique websites. Let me explain.
Two links from the same website would only be counted as one linking root domain.
If my site received two links from, let’s say, example.com and example.com/blog that would mean I would have a total of 2 links but they are coming from only 1 root domain. The more root domains you have the better it is.
Finally, the Page social metrics.
Social signals are important in ranking and this is what’s included here. If you use the free version of this tool you won’t see any number so I won’t go through this.
So that was the link profile of one of the big boys out there. Wikipedia is clearly a massive site with many links making it one of the superpowers in search engines and generating millions of visit.
But never mind Wikipedia. What we are interested in here is the link profile of your business and how you can make the most of it.
So let’s use an example that will be closer to home this time.
Head over to google.co.uk Let’s do a quick search for “beauty salon in Twickenham ”
In first position we have “truebeautysalon.co.uk” and in position 2 we have beyond-skin.co.uk
Let’s check their link profiles in our tool.
Head back to https://moz.com/researchtools/ose/ and enter the address of the site that came up first, truebeautysalon.co.uk, in the URL field
Click search and let’s check out their profile.
With a domain authority of 20 and a total links of 27 you might think that in comparison with Wikipedia it pales into insignificance but we are not comparing like for like here. After all truebeautysalon do rank number 1 for hairdresser in Twickenham and not wikipedia.
For a business this size a domain authority of 20 is not bad and they also have a home page authority of 33 which is very decent.
What I didn’t cover with the Wikipedia example is the table called “inbound links” right below the page metrics. This is a breakdown of every link pointing to truebeautysalon.co.uk sorted by importance. It also includes the piece of text, also known as anchor text, used for the link.
Basically this is telling me that this site, livelikeavip.com, has a Page Authority of 23 and a Domain Authority of 29 and has a link pointing to truebeauty.co.uk called “True beauty salon website”.
Let’s check this out by simply clicking on the page. Here we go.
This table is an absolute gem. You can use the drop down to filer the results. My advice here is to select “this root domain” from the target drop down, “Only external links” from the link source drop down and “only follow” from the link type drop down.
Now let’s check the link profile of the web site that was in position number 2 for “beauty salon in Twickenham ”, beyond-skin.co.uk
They have a domain authority of 14 and a total number of links of 18. This is a lot less than truebeuatysalon. This is very likely the reason why they come below truebeuatysalon in the search results. They have less strength as far as Google is concerned.
If the owner of beyond-skin.co.uk wants to trump the competition they will need more links pointing to their site.
This is where this tool offers most of its value. What I would recommend the owner of beyond-skin.co.uk to do is to simply copy and paste in an excel spreadsheet the link profile of truebeuatysalon’s as well as all the other competitors in their area. Compare all the competitors’ links with theirs and identify websites where they don’t have a link but their competitors do.
Get in touch with the site owners of these and figure out a way of getting a link to their site.
Doing this will improve their link profile and help them climb to the top spot in their local area.
That’s it. I know this may seems a little complicated at first but I can assure you this is one of the best approaches and it will pay off. All you need is a bit of time. This is an extremely important aspect of gaining visibility online.
I personally use this method for all of my clients. I hope you’ve enjoyed this session and if you have any question simply go to rankingacademy.co.uk/qa.