Long gone are the days when SEO was all about building links, links and more links with not so much as a passing thought for relevancy and overall link partner quality. Now, more than ever, it is crucial to take a quality over quantity approach when acquiring links for your website or you will soon find yourself getting mauled by Google’s ferocious Penguin 2.0 update.

The thing is, finding high quality link partners is extremely labour-intensive, requiring many hours of research and countless emails which can often yield little return in terms of linking opportunities. Quite often this is the result of a poorly considered outreach approach. It is not enough to simply compile a list of sites you’d like to partner with, blast out a one-size-fits-all templated email, and cross your fingers.

Here’s a few tips for refining your outreach approach and maximising your response rate;

1. Prioritise

Outreach is an exercise in efficiency – sending out highly personalised emails to each and every relevant site you find may yield one or two opportunities, however the time you spent doing so may have cost you the opportunity to contact many others. Outreach is a numbers game and as such you should prioritise relevant sites based on a range of factors such as Pagerank, Domain Authority and Social Following. Spend more time personalising your outreach to those at the top of your list, and template your approach to the remaining.

2. Personalise your Template

When using a templated email to conduct outreach efforts, be sure to at least include the name of the site owner (if you can find it on their site), and a reference to their URL (be sure to delete the http:// though as this screams ‘copy and paste’). Adding these little details to a template doesn’t take too long and will greatly increase your chances of getting a response.

3. Offer Value

Keeping in mind that your email may be one of many sitting in the webmasters inbox, you’ll need to sell yourself! What benefit will they receive from publishing your guest post? Maybe you’re an expert in the field, your writing is of an excellent quality or you’re willing to allow them to reciprocate with a guest post on your site. Blatantly asking for a link rather than looking to establish a mutually beneficial relationship is unlikely to get a response.

The evolution of the industry has seen many fly-by-night SEO cowboys fall by the wayside as their spammy approach to link building is no longer effective and they don’t have the resources required to acquire these high quality links. Here at Search Factory we have a team of writers and content marketing professionals right here in our Brisbane office, which allows to us put in the leg work to find these high quality linking opportunities for our client’s and ultimately get their website ranking.