Link building for startups is one of the most useful tools to generate leads and traffic.

When you are looking for a particular service or need more information, the first place you will go is to search engines. This is also where your clients will be, and they will be faced with thousands of results for any keyword they enter into the search bar.

To ensure your startup business is visible to potential clients, you need to develop an SEO strategy that will optimize your website to make it rank higher in search results. Even when there are thousands of results to contend with, most people do not look past the first page of results, and if you want your startup to get noticed, then this is where you need to be.

The most authoritative websites are shown on the first page of results, and you can get there, too, through link building for startups.

In this guide, we are sharing everything you need to know about link building for startups and how you can use link building tactics to increase traffic to your site.

What is Link Building for startups?

Link building strategies are a significant aspect of SEO and should be done in all industries.

Website development and content creation will only get you so far when it comes to generating an audience online, which is why website owners need to work on developing a link building campaign.

This is a process of connecting with other websites in your niche and sharing links between content. Not only does this allow you to share audiences with other websites, but it also promotes your work as relevant content on search engines and thus helps you rank higher.

When it comes to ranking results, search engines like Google look for two main things:

  1. High-quality content
  2. High-quality links

Being linked to authoritative sites in your niche is a great way to show search engines that you are a reliable and relevant source which should appear on the first pages of results. Being on the first page means you will gain more traffic and, therefore, can generate more brand awareness or revenue for your business.

As with all elements of digital marketing, there is a particular link building strategy that startup clients should abide by if they want the best results.

What Makes High Quality Links

The purpose of link building strategies is not to simply get links for your website but to make sure these are quality connections.

High-quality links are a way of showing search engines like Google that your website is a good source and should be recommended above other websites in your niche. This can only be done by connecting with authoritative websites and offering valuable links within your content.

There are three main kinds of links you should look into using within your link building strategy:

Authority links

All the websites you connect with through your link building efforts should be established sources that have a good reputation in the industry.

Considering the website authority before you start building relationships with other website owners is a great way to go because not all content is created equal. Within every industry, there are going to be the leading websites that offer the best advice and are seen as an authoritative source as well as those on the other end of the spectrum.

As a startup, you want to connect with the authoritative websites within your niche to show that you, too, offer something of value.

Relevant Links

This should go without saying, but relevancy is another key area that is assessed by search engines when it comes to ranking their results. This means all links and referring domains on your website need to be relevant to your content.

You do not want to connect with other sites that have nothing to do with your niche or your audience’s interests. Not only will this create low-quality content that does not make sense, but it will also reflect badly on you when it comes to your SEO.

Editorial Links

These links offer real value to any start up that is trying to reach a wider audience and will improve SEO.

These links are preferred by any search engine over directories or even social media links because they offer more authority.

DoFollow Links

DoFollow links are usually more valuable than nofollow links and should be considered when building links for your startup website.

With this tag, Google crawlers know they can view the link and use it as part of your search engine ranking.

A successful website reaches the needs of its target audience in everything it does. When you build links, make sure you are considering the quality of each link and whether this is relevant to your audience to ensure you are contributing to better SEO.

How To Develop A Good Link Building Strategy For Startups?

Startups have the option to be part of many link building campaigns and are encouraged to build relationships across their industry if they want increased online traffic.

If you are just getting started and want to know the best way to go when it comes to increasing organic traffic, consider the following link building methods:


HARO is a service that connects journalists and those in similar professions to their sources. It is a database that can provide one of the easiest link building opportunities for startups.

Registering for HARO gives you access to good-quality backlinks and will connect you with relevant sources as you create content for your audience.

It is very easy to get started as you simply have to register to HARO and check the daily newsletter that will arrive in your inbox. Here there will be requests from journalists and writers looking for influencer outreach, sources, and other connections in many sectors.

When you find a request that fits your niche, you can reply to the journalist who will publish quality content linking back to your website.

As a start up, there is more freedom to build backlinks with all kinds of sources because you may be able to offer your insight on many issues. This means that even if there is nothing on HARO about your specific niche, there will always be requests for business insider information that you can contribute to for high-quality backlinks.

Press Links

Promotional content and PR are great ways to increase organic traffic to your site, and they can even become part of your link building strategy when done well.

It is possible to generate more backlinks from publications and websites using this strategy, but it is best to stick with good quality sources to aid your SEO. As a startup, there should be plenty of opportunities to advertise your work to the media – whether you have a new product, new insights, or simply want to comment on the industry at large.

On a similar note to HARO, this method is a way of getting high-quality content written about your business which is then creating backlinks to your website.

If there is something to promote, you can contact journalists or even the owner of a marketing blog to see if they will write about it. This content will then link to your site and push people to visit it.

While it may be difficult to get attention at first, stick with this process, as once one publication picks up on the story, more are sure to follow. Developing a relationship with journalists or specific publications not only aids your link building but can also offer ongoing promotions in the future.

Guest Posts

Likewise, you can also offer this connection through guest posts either on your site or another. A guest post is where work is published on another site but links back to your own.

It is a way of sharing content and audiences with another source in your industry and can increase organic traffic to your site when done well. All forms of press links can increase organic traffic and be a great asset to link building when paired with quality content.

While guest posts can be used on any site and by any business, startups have a great advantage because they can usually provide something new when guest posting. The nature of a startup also means you will not be limited by niche or industry when guest posting, as your content can be made relevant on all kinds of sites.

To start using guest posts, you first need to know who you want to work with. This means taking some time to list out the sites you want to link with and the kind of guest post you could provide for them – or vice versa – before pitching ideas to them.

A guest post can be a blog post regarding a specific topic, but the main feature is the fact it is published on another site and will link back to your own. This means there is a lot of freedom in this form of link building, and it is a great tool for startups.

Unlinked Mentions

Do a standard Google search for your brand and see what appears to see whether there are opportunities for you to link to content that is already out there.

Perhaps there are some articles already written about the work you do with links to your website. But a large percentage of mentions regarding your site will be without a link.

If this is the case, you can create links by contacting the author of these posts and asking for a link to be added. If there is no mention of your startup online yet, you should set alerts for relevant topics so you can generate links as opportunities arise across different pages.

You can also do this through broken link building, which relies on you finding broken links throughout your industry and offering your site as an alternative. A broken link can do a lot of damage to SEO, so most sites will want to avoid this.

Helping sites take care of any broken link by offering to link your content instead can generate more traffic for you and be a great way to get your name out there.

What To Avoid In Link Building for Startups

Developing a link building strategy can be a great way to reach new customers and improve your ranking on Google, as well as other search engines.

However, it is important to note that this only applies to ethical link building – anything else will have a detrimental effect on your SEO strategy as a whole.

If you want to make the most out of link building, there are some things you should avoid including the following:

Buying Links

Any link that you have to pay for as a ‘quick fix’ for SEO is a scam.

There is no quick fix for link building, and buying spam links can cause you to be penalized by Google. This will reduce your organic traffic and limit the number of people who can access your link.

To generate a link building campaign, you need to build relationships within your industry and ensure that you are offering valuable content that is worth sharing. This can take a lot of work, which is why many people will resort to paying for a link instead, despite the consequences.

This process aims to generate ethical link building connections, which means only having a link to reputable websites.

Poor Quality Content

Anything that impacts the quality of your content is not going to support your SEO efforts.

While it is important to link to other sites or vice versa through your content, having too many links will make the post unreadable. This means it will not be deemed a quality source and will, therefore, not be recommended by Google.

There are various ways that poor-quality content can impact your SEO, and having too many backlinks is just one. Link placement is also incredibly important when it comes to offering quality content, and all links should make sense within the context of the page.

Likewise, the wording of anchor text can have a huge impact – whether this is exact match anchor texts with another source or using anchor text that is too promotional.

All content aims to provide value to your audience, not to solely sell something to them.

Not Diversifying Sources

Finally, link building is a way to connect with a range of other websites and generate traffic.

To generate as much traffic as possible, you want to link with multiple kinds of websites from all industries. It is seen as a red flag by Google if your link building only connects with certain websites and is all the same type.

Even if you only work with the top sources in your industry, this can still be seen as an issue because it can link to spam behavior.

Using high-quality links from a range of sources in your content is the best way to develop link building for startups.


To grow your business online and to reach a wide audience, startups should create a valuable backlink profile.

This is a way of connecting with other websites in your niche and using links in your content to generate traffic. Link building is one of the most effective tools for SEO, and it can be a great way to grow your business online when done right.

To learn more or to request a free consultation, contact us today.