9 Proven Link Building Tips for Small Businesses

Last modified on: April 15th, 2024

In this post, we share 9 proven link building tips for small businesses to increase online visibility, improve search engine rankings, and generate more traffic in 2024.

Link building is an essential part of SEO that provides numerous benefits for small businesses. An effective link building strategy not only drives traffic to your business website but also helps you get in front of new audiences and potential customers.

Furthermore, acquiring backlinks (links from another site that point to a page on your site) often gives businesses the ever-needed ranking boost on Google's SERPs (search engine results pages), improving search presence and business as a result.

Small Business Link Building Tips

Unlike big brands, local businesses have to put in a bit of effort to earn high-quality backlinks.

To increase your online presence, traffic, and sales, we've gathered some proven link building tips for small businesses. Let's dive right in!

1. Give Back to Your Local Community

As a small business owner or manager of a small business, supporting your local community through partnerships or sponsorships is a great way to earn local links while helping out in other ways.

There are multiple ways to support and connect with your community and other local businesses. Examples include charities, local events, your local chamber of commerce, attending networking events, and supporting schools and other local organizations, like your local animal shelter or youth sports team.

In exchange, request the community you're supporting add a link on their site to yours if possible, such as on a sponsor page or news section. This strategy not only contributes to your local rankings and domain authority by signaling a strong local site connection to Google but can also lead to more opportunities with relevant sites, organizations, and local bloggers.

Ideally, support a community or organization that is relevant to your brand or compliments each other in some way. Don't just sponsor anyone who'll give you a link to your website. Make sure the potential site is up-to-date and of decent quality first. You want your links to translate into better rankings, traffic, and sales. For instance, if you're a sports brand, sponsor your local sports team. If you're a patissier, support your local church or school.

2. Post Engaging Content on Your Website

Search engines promote pages and posts that are updated, high-quality, unique, and helpful or engaging. Therefore, aim to create high-quality content that helps out your existing and prospective customers, based on keyword research and what they're searching online.

Before you publish a page or blog post on your site, make sure it's relevant to your business and your target audience. Posting a movie review in a sports blog would throw off your search engine optimization, readers, and brand.

Search engines like Google look at a site's pages and posts as a collection of content on various topics and subtopics. You want to avoid writing loosely about different topics as this could dilute your site's authority on the topics relevant to your business and audience. Here's a post about topic clusters and how to set up your site's content for search.

To increase content engagement and the potential that people share and link to your content, include a mix of text, images, and/or video. Then, share your content on social media sites and reach out to site owners who may find the content helpful or enjoyable.

Use powerful content optimization software like Surfer SEO to optimize your content and give yourself a much higher chance to outrank competing sites in search results and create link-worthy content. Check out this review of Surfer SEO to learn more.

3. Video, Visual, and Audio Content

If you're not a big fan of writing articles, you can drive organic traffic to your website from other sources such as a YouTube channel, podcast, and social media.

YouTube is the other leading search engine by Google alongside Google Search, so it can be worth creating content on and building up subscribers and views.

Tip: YouTube and website content can synergize with each other well. You can create a page or blog post on a topic, create a supporting YouTube video on the topic, and embed the video into your page, as well as publish a link to your page from the video's description, to provide an engaging experience and generate organic traffic from YouTube and Google Search.

Promote your product or service through said marketing methods and make sure to provide links to your website, along with social media platforms, in the description box.

Also, make sure to respond to the comments left on the platform/s you use.

4. Form Relationships With Other Businesses

Like you, small businesses are always looking for opportunities to increase their online exposure. For this reason, engaging with similar or related businesses and forming a business relationship with them can help your local business immensely.

You can write testimonials for them and ask them to return the favor. Likewise, offer business to local and niche bloggers and ask them to include your links in their posts.

Alongside monetary exchange, build a genuine relationship by commenting on or resharing the content that you find interesting on your website or social media accounts.

You can also use leading all-in-one SEO software such as Semrush to research related sites and check their backlink sources for potential sites to reach out to. More details can be found in this Semrush review including key features and pricing.

You can also use these tools to check for broken link building opportunities, where you could potentially get broken links replaced with links to more relevant content on your site.

I recommend SE Ranking as a low-cost alternative to Semrush packed with reliable features for competitor research, rank tracking, site audits, on-page optimization, and more. Here's a detailed SE Ranking review of its features and pricing plans.

5. Run a Contest

Running a contest is an effective way to create a buzz around your brand. It'll bring in new visitors, social shares, potential links, and deepen connections with customers. A contest can also increase your website traffic and discoverability, which ultimately equals more visitors and potential customers.

When publishing a contest, make a list of easy-to-follow conditions and prompt the participants to share the link to a site page about the contest. This not only lends credibility to your embedded contest or giveaway but also helps you build links in the process.

The contest doesn't have to cost you a ton of money. You can provide limited-time services, product vouchers, or giveaways that only require a small investment for a potentially large return over time.

6. Promote Your Website Through Guest Posts

Guest posting is a great way to promote your website and earn a backlink without spending any money. However, it does take a bit of time and effort on your part.

For those who aren't aware, guest posting involves writing a post for another site as a guest. You might think this is a bit counterproductive, but it's actually one of the best ways to get an external backlink to your website. Guest posting can help increase your rankings, expose your product or service, and establish you and your business as an authority.

Almost anyone can write a guest post, so some websites—particularly large websites—are quite picky with the posts they allow on their website. Therefore, it might be best to pitch your articles to smaller but relevant websites and build up to writing for larger sites as your build a track record of writing quality content over time. 

With that said, don’t be afraid to pitch to major publishers. They might be intimidating and you might have to wait a while, but they can help boost your website significantly.

7. Engage With Forums and Review Sites

In a way, this strategy is similar to guest posting, except on a smaller scale. Forums and review sites like Reddit and Quora allow people to answer questions and share helpful information.

Answer questions related to your business to establish your authority and increase your online exposure. It'll also give you the opportunity to share links to pages on your site as supporting material and promote your website and business at the same time.

8. List Your Business on Directory Sites

Get listed on local directories to increase local business exposure and potentially earn a backlink to your site. To speed things up, you can use local SEO software tools to effectively research, build, and monitor local listings and business citations.

When you add up-to-date and accurate business information across multiple business listings, major search engines like Google and Bing take this consistency into account and see your business as more reliable and trustworthy, which can lead to improvements in local rankings and search visibility.

For Google, the most important listing to claim and update is a Google Business Profile. Check out these tips for optimizing your Google Business Profile.

9. Use Social Media

With over 4 billion active users, social media is arguably the biggest set of online platforms in the world. It's a great way to promote small and big businesses alike, with plenty of brands attaining a cult status when their brand, product, or service goes viral.

By sharing your content and offerings on social media sites, you can redirect traffic to your website. You can also partner up with other social media accounts and influencers to potentially promote your content and share a link to your site in their description box.


Link building isn't an easy task for SEOs and small business owners alike. In most cases, a link building campaign requires a combination of time, effort, connections, and monetary investment.

However, as you acquire quality, relevant links over time, you're business and site authority online will increase, and you'll surely reap the SEO benefits that follow.

The above link building strategies are great ways to boost your online visibility, improve site authority and rankings, and get in front of new potential customers. When link building efforts are executed properly, links can result in more traffic, leads, and sales.

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