What It Is & Why You Need It [+a Helpful Checklist]

What It Is & Why You Need It [+a Helpful Checklist]

Imagine this: you did everything possible to optimize your website.

From optimizing your images to conducting keyword research to setting up a site structure and an internal link strategy.

Even so, you’re still having trouble ranking on Google.

You may only have completed half of the puzzle. What is the other half? Off-page optimization.

While your website is vital to your SEO strategy, there are additional actions you need to take outside of your website to help you rank.

What is off-page SEO?

Off-page SEO encompasses all of the measures you take to influence your search engine ranking that are outside of your website. This can include creating backlinks, enabling on social media, and blogging guests.

Search engines take many factors into account in determining a page’s ranking. While some of the factors are based on the website’s content and performance, Google also gathers understanding of your website from sources outside of your domain. This is why off-page SEO is so valuable.

Link building, for example – an effective off-page SEO strategy – is one of the top ranking factors. This is because Google is based on PageRank, an algorithm that checks a page’s backlinks for quantity and quality.

An off-page SEO strategy supports your website efforts (i.e., on-page SEO) and gives your domain credibility, relevance, trustworthiness and authority.

On-page SEO vs off-page SEO

In its simplest sense, on-page SEO encompasses any action you take on your website to influence your search engine ranking. Off-page, on the other hand, takes place outside of your website.

What special actions? Here is a quick visual guide:

Off-page SEO versus on-page SEO

This list is not exhaustive, but it should provide some clarity about the difference between these two SEO strategies. The key to success is that both are equally important to achieving and maintaining a high search ranking.

Off-page SEO checklist

  1. Link building
  2. Social media
  3. Local SEO
  4. Content Marketing

1. Link building

Links from other websites on the web server as a vote of confidence for your domain.

The more votes you get, the more likely you are to rank on search engines. Conversely, the less votes you have, the more difficult it is to convince Google that you are a trustworthy, authoritative website.

You need other sites to vouch for you – backlinks do just that. Creating an external link is an off-page strategy that should be number one on your list.

There are several types of links you can get:

  • Natural or Earned Linkswhere editorial publishers or consumers organically mention your brand.
  • Built linksthat require some effort, e.g. B. Contacting publishers to assign or mention links.

It is important to use white hat strategies to get backlinks as methods like flooding forums and comment areas with links to your website can penalize you by Google. For information on creative ways to get backlinks, check out this backlinks strategy guide.

You can also skip to this section where we explain what to look for in a backlink opportunity.

2. Social media

You have likely viewed social media as a brand awareness tool, more than an SEO game.

However, social media is a great way to gain domain authority and improve your search engine rankings.

When you share content on social media and drive traffic to your website, it shows Google that you need to get traffic from different sources and have great quality content that is interesting.

For this reason, it is important to consistently involve your community in social media and use it for the distribution of content. More engagement will likely lead to more shares, backlinks, and clicks, which will help build domain authority.

3. Local SEO

Local search engine optimization is a strategy of optimizing a website for local search results. Typically used for brick and mortar businesses or businesses that serve consumers in specific geographic areas such as hair salons, air conditioning companies, or supermarkets.

For this to work, you need to send signals to search engines that serve consumers in local areas. How you do that? Here are some important ways:

  • Add your company to local and national company directories, namely Google My Business.
  • Request your listing on review sites like Trip Advisor and Yelp and respond to reviews.
  • Encourage your customers to leave positive reviews online.
  • Consistent contact information on all digital platforms

A comprehensive guide to local search engine optimization can be found in this article.

4. Content Marketing

Content marketing helps you reach your target audience and attract them with information that addresses their needs and weaknesses.

In addition to your on-page content marketing efforts like blog posts, you can also take advantage of methods like guest blogging, downloadable offers, surveys, and reports.

These methods are great ways to drive traffic to your website, generate new leads, and improve your search engine ranking.

Take guest blogging, which has several advantages. The first is the ability to reach a new audience that falls within your target market. The second is the backlink value you can earn from being published on another high authority domain. Finally, guest blogging can help you get more website traffic – another important ranking factor.

Off-page SEO factors for link building

Over the years, Google and other search engines have become stricter about what actions they reward and punish. Once everyone knew that link building was a key factor in ranking, people used all kinds of strategies to get backlinks. From posting your links in forums to paying for links.

Then search engines got wiser and began to penalize the use of unethical or unnatural link placements. Here are some things to keep in mind as you develop your link building strategy today:

  • The number of referring domains – The more domains you refer to your website, the more votes of trust you have according to Google.
  • Connection Authority – It is not enough to have many referring domains. You want to be referenced by domains with high authority.
  • Relevance – The link must be relevant to your site. Say you’re a pet toy company. A link from the National Dog Association weighs more than a link from a lifestyle blogger.
  • Anchor text – The specific text that is hyperlinked to your website should be descriptive and relevant without the risk of spam.

What to look for in off-page SEO tools

So you want to work on your off-page SEO strategy and you need a tool. Before choosing a tool, it is important to know what features to look for.

The first thing you want to look for is an SEO tool that includes a backlink checker. It should contain details about your referring domains, anchor texts, their linkage permissions, and more.

For example, SEMrush has an analysis tool for backlinks that you can use to compare your website with your competitors and identify areas for improvement.

Semrush off-page SEO tool

You should also look for a tool with a brand monitoring feature. With HubSpot’s social media management software, you can track both your brand names and those of your competitors.

HubSpot's off-page SEO tool

Image source

This complements the CRM SEO marketing software with on-page SEO functions such as website audit and recommendation, topic development and keyword data tools.

Moz off-page SEO tool

Image source

Also, look for an SEO tool that can easily identify good guest blogging opportunities. For example, with MozBar extension from Moz, you can instantly pull up metrics on any webpage and determine if they are right for you.

Developing a robust off-page SEO strategy is just as important as your website’s efforts. Both work hand in hand to give search engines a complete picture of your brand and determine your ranking. So don’t neglect it because it can be the key to your success.