Link Building For Ecommerce Website
When you publish amazing content on your ecommerce site’s blog you have the world’s link building strategies at your disposal.
Yes, building links to your content can give your product and category pages a boost in Google’s search results. But those links aren’t nearly as powerful as links that point directly to your product and category pages.
But you might be wondering:
“Why would anyone link to a product page?”.
That’s the same question that Backlinko reader Chris Laursen wondered. He had a ecommerce client that was struggling with link building. Then Chris decided to try The Moving Man Method.
After implementing this strategy, the number of links pointing to his client’s website rose dramatically:
Sure, it was great that Chris built so many backlinks…
But the TYPES of links that he was able to develop — contextual links from highly-relevant sites in the consumer electronics industry — is the real story here.
He got links from…
A DA68 consumer electronics product site:
A popular Danish Mac news site:
And an editorial link from an online electronics magazine:
Even better, several of these links point directly to product and category pages, like this one from the trusted and authoritative (DA66) MacNews.com:
Here’s the exact step-by-step process that Chris used.
STEP #1: Find Outdated, Moved or Expired Resources
This is important:
Unless you have something that adds value to another person’s site, you might as well give up on link building right now.
Because the only way you’re going to convince someone to link to you isby making their site better.
That’s where step #1 comes in…
Step #1 is finding resources that are out-of-date, expired or not working.
Here are a few examples from the real world to show you what I mean…
A Real Life Example
Because Chris was working with an ecommerce site, he zeroed in on companies that had recently gone out of business.
But no matter what you sell, there are businesses in your industry that have gone under…and have THOUSANDS of links pointing to their old site.
In many cases, the domain name actually expires. When that happens the entire site gets replaced with parked pages, like this:
Because pages on out of business websites are still technically working (they’re not 404s), broken link checkers can’t find them.
Although parked domains are harder to find than broken links, the advantage of using them is this:
They hook you up with link building opportunities that your competition doesn’t know about.
For example, look no further than Blockbuster.com (175,000+ links).
You probably heard that movie rental giant Blockbuster closed its doors a few years back.
Because Blockbuster Video is a household name, their site — Blockbuster.com — generated A LOT of quality backlinks over the years.
If you’re in the entertainment industry, Blockbuster.com is an absolutegold mine of link building opportunities.
But how do you find these outdated resources?
That’s what I’m going to cover next…
Domain auction sites have done a lot of the hard work of finding outdated resources for you.
They’ve found domains that had something going for them (either traffic, backlinks or both)…and they organize them in one place to make them easy to sift through.
Strategy #2: News About Business Closings, Rebrands and Mergers
Google News is a treasure trove of information about companies that close, rebrand or change domain names.
Just head over to Google News and use one of these search strings:
- “Chapter 7” (Chapter 7 means the company dissolved. Chapter 11 means the company is restructuring)
- “Business closes”
- “Has closed”
- “Out of business”
- “Rebrands as”
Strategy #3: Find Parked Pages
As I mentioned earlier, parked pages are PERFECT for The Moving Man Method.
Here’s how to find them:
“This page is parked FREE, courtesy of GoDaddy.com” +”domain is for sale”
This brings up parked GoDaddy sites that are for sale.
It may take a bit of digging…
…but if you look at enough sites in the results you’ll find at least one link that you can use for The Moving Man Method.
Back to Chris
When Chris dug for outdated resources, he noticed a parked domain in the same niche as his client (iphone cases) — edge-design.com.
Edge Design used to sell customized iPhone cases…before they closed for unknown reasons.
And it’s a product that his ecommerce client sells.
Chris thought to himself:
“If we’re linking to Edge Design’s website, I bet other sites are too.”
And he was right.
Which brings us to step #2…
STEP #2: Grab a List of Pages Pointing to the Outdated Resource Once you’ve identified a popular-but-outdated resource, it’s time to find sites that link to it.
First, grab the URL of the dead resource.
If it’s an individual page on a site (for example, a tool that’s not working anymore or a service that a company no longer offers), enter the URL of that specific page.
If the entire site is down, you can use the homepage URL:
If you find a page with a lot of referring domains, head over to Archive.org and see what used to be on that page.
Then recreate a similar resource on your site. Because you have a solid replacement for the outdated page, the email outreach you do in step #3 will be crazy effective.
Next, export the list of external links:
And you have yourself a list of pages linking to the outdated resource that you found:
And this leads us to the last step.
STEP #3: Send Emails, Get Links
You’re almost done.
Now it’s time to let people know about their outdated link.
The best way to do that? Email outreach.
Here’s a word-for-word script you can use (this is an actual outreach email that Chris sent out):
As you can see, Chris didn’t just tap the person on the shoulder and let them know about the outdated link…
…he also gave them a replacement link.
It just so happens that the replacement is a page on his site.
When you send out brief outreach emails (Chris’s was only 21-words) — and improve other people’s sites — email outreach tends to convert REALLY well: