Ignoring the rumors of late, link building for SEO is far from dead. It is just as vital today as it has been in the past, but the strategies and opportunities have changed quite drastically. Doing link building right means tossing out some old tried and true methods, black hat methods, and using such new strategies like employing social media to one’s advantage.
First of all, let’s look at why the old ways of link building are dead. Basically it’s because Google had gotten tired of nonsense and dishonest link building and that shakeup has incorporated many of Google’s powerful software to scouring the web and shedding the sites using such outdated and unethical practices. If you get caught using unethical SEO link building techniques, especially black hat techniques, Google will penalize you so bad you may never recover. This is why you need to re-examine your sites and clean them up asap.
Get rid of those linking webrings. They may not be unethical but Google frowns on them. Google wants organic, real linking from one site to another and those links had better be real, relevant to the subject matter of your site and definitely not bought. In some cases bought or paid for links can be excused but that depends on certain factors.
If you’ve been piling on links just for linking purposes then you had better get rid of them. Also, you links should go to the main page of a site, and inbound links should go to at the main page of your site unless you have specific categories that aren’t on cookie cutter doorway pages. Unique content, with well described content and not some generalized gimmick to suck up web traffic are highly recommended if you want to stay in the SEO game.
Having inbound and outbound links to and from sites that have absolutely nothing to do with your site, nor theirs is a no-no. Clean it up.
Now, onto social media.
Each of the big social media venues allows for awesome opportunities for link building. Facebook, Twitter, Google +, and YouTube are doable and some take some time, but done right you can accumulate highly active and relevant links that will boost you up in the rankings and keep you out of Google’s ‘bad site’ radar.
There are several techniques and you’ll have to learn the right ones and keep a pulse on the industry changes as they come along. What works on Facebook may or may not work on YouTube and so on. Google + and YouTube are siblings so to speak so you’re in good company there. Each has several ways to link and grow just like that which is done on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a prime example. You can ask your LinkedIn buddies to exchange links and that alone will provide you with a plethora of niche specific inbound and outbound linking. Google offers lots here but you’ve got to do some studying and have patience. Google + using Google Circles is the key here. Search and find those people of like businesses and expertise and easily categorize them. The same with Twitter and Twitter has special tools to help along the way.
So keep abreast of the SEO opportunities for social media link building, chat with other webmasters and business pros and don’t disregard what sites like Google and Twitter have to offer. You’ll gradually get to where you want to be and stably and ethically at that.