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Ultimate Link Building Guide for Business, Tech and Finance Industries

Link building is one of the pivotal aspects of digital marketing. It is among the most effective marketing tools for achieving tangible offsite SEO success. However, there are businesses that still haven’t incorporated link building strategies in their digital marketing campaigns, which means it is highly likely that these companies are missing out on major revenue opportunities, especially if their clients/users come from business, finance or tech niches.

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Though LB can sometimes feel like a time-consuming strategy that seemingly brings little payoff in the beginning, this offsite SEO tactic is definitely worth the investment as it brings numerous long-term benefits, especially when deployed and leveraged by link building experts.

Some of these benefits include:

  • Improved rankings in organic search
  • Improved organic and referral traffic
  • Targeted exposure to qualified audiences
  • Creation of lasting relationships with industry influencers
  • Increased Domain Authority
  • Increased genuine (organic) authority amongst your industry peers and target audiences
  • User engagement, brand awareness boost, etc.

In order to create an effective SEO strategy that would be tailored to your or your client’s specific needs, one must have a firm grasp of the following:

  • the business for which the link building campaign is being created
  • the niche/industry the business operates in
  • the current state of SEO landscape within that niche/industry
  • the current state of the business’s marketing strategy and their most relevant competitors

Only when all these are properly covered and examined will a link building team be able to come up with an offsite SEO strategy that would bring big ROI in the long run.

How to Formulate an Effective Link Building Strategy

Even the LB teams already have tangible experience with clients from the business, tech and finance Industries cannot simply jump straight in and start creating links. Three critical things that you first have to get to know much more about - prior to commencing your LB endeavors - include:

  • Your client
  • Their competitors
  • Their audience

Naturally, there are portions of these 3 types of research that will overlap. Depending on the campaign duration and intensity, this research should be ongoing, regularly updated and it technically never ends. For example, our agency has clients for which we have been performing link building services for 3+ years now and we are still actively updating and tweaking our offsite SEO strategies for them.

Pro Tip: If your team lands a long-term client, we strongly suggest that you prepare template spreadsheets with allocated columns for every bit of information you might need later. As an alternative, we highly recommend using link building, prospecting, and link management tools like Dibz and Base. Implementing these platforms into your link building processes will make data gathering much faster and ensure much smoother and effective linking opportunities prospecting, improving your overall workflow immensely. We will talk about these handy tools more further within this article.

Client Research

If you want to build links for a client, taking stock of their current linkable assets, their tone of voice, values, goals and standards is the first step towards helping them improve their online visibility.

Among other things, this includes:

  • A detailed content audit - to identify client’s content that needs to be removed, updated, expanded, promoted more aggressively or completely repurposed.
  • Discussion of their goals - which keywords do they want to rank for, which of their competitors’ campaigns are they most impressed with, etc.
  • Tactics - which strategy types are they willing to invest in, and which sites meet their quality standards.
  • Additional assets - Apart from their website and content on it, what are their other assets? Do they have valuable industry connections or partners with large audiences? Are they in a position to offer something that the market needs and that nobody else is currently offering?

Competitor Research

When you carefully and honestly analyze your client’s competitors, you will find exactly which tactics you are most likely to succeed with, as well as which goals you’ll never be able to reach and shouldn’t waste any time and/or resources on.

Proper competitor analysis will get you a plethora of prospects on its own, while it will also improve your other prospecting efforts and help you form the basis for the rest of your strategy.

So, what do you have to keep track of when conducting competitor research?

Backlinks

Aside from the sites linking to your competitors, you should also make notes/comments about the most fruitful ways to contact them and about the pages characteristic for that kind of website. For instance, if the site in question is a blog, you’d also save the blogger’s contact email, as well as the blog’s “write for us" page - if they have one. Finally, make sure to take note of any broken links on the sites you come across. You’ll see later how this information can be absolutely invaluable.

Keywords and Anchors

It’s very handy to examine competitor’s anchors on incoming links and take note of how they used them for internal linking or backlinking from their other assets. Make sure you examine the keywords you want to rank for, as well as those that may be useful for prospecting purposes later. This includes the names of well-known people or companies in the industry, specific events etc.

Content

Examine competitors’ posts and content pieces to see which of them attracted the most attention and engagement, especially in terms of likes, shares, organic backlinks, etc. Take note of what makes those content pieces and/or posts special - is it the information they hold, the way they’re presented, the way they’ve been promoted?

Other Assets

If you want to replicate tactics your competitors used, you have to make sure you’re actually equipped to do so. Of course, you’re not only looking for their strengths, but for yours as well, i.e. things that none of your competitors are offering, but that you can.

Target Audience Research

It is likely that you already know which type of audience you are targeting, but it is critical to have insight into the following data as well:

  • The exact content types they enjoy the most.
  • The tone of voice they find the most appropriate.
  • The social networks they use so you can reach them.
  • How they formulate their queries when looking for what your client is offering.
  • Which influencers they trust the most, and why.

Every bit of data about your audience that you can gather is going to help you in the long run. From looking at your audience behavior report in Google Analytics, to reading their comments on social networks, related blogs, or forums; there is no shortage of places to look for this information, you just need to be diligent and persistent in researching and recording it all.

How to Develop Effective Link Building Tactics for Tech, Business, Finance Websites

Once you’re done with the competitor analysis part, you likely already have a fair amount of link prospects and other useful data you need for the remainder of your research. Creating an effective link building strategy is the process where you will use the data and insights gleaned from competitors research we covered above. In this segment, we’ll show you how to use that info, while we’ll also explain how to do this using Dibz for link prospecting (but you can use the same examples in Google search, if you think you have the time for it) and Base for link monitoring/management.

Guest posting

We’ll outline the three main ways to find interesting business, finance or tech blogs to guest post on, and give you examples of searches you can use directly within the link prospecting tool, Dibz, or Google. We’ll cover looking for tech, business and finance blogs by looking for ‘write for us pages’, pages with published guest posts, and simply looking for relevant blogs, which may or may not be publishing guest posts.

1. Find 'Write for us' pages

Sure, you can just look for relevant blogs, which is exactly what we’ll describe in the third section of this part, but by focusing your search on ‘Write for us’ pages, you are ensuring that the sites returned as results are accepting guest posts (unless in rare instances where they have an outdated ‘write for us’ page, or one informing you that they no longer do this).

Step 1: Keywords

Since you’ll use step two to indicate that you want blogs, specifically, their collaboration pages, you need to use the first step to describe the type of blog you’re looking for. To do this, you need to observe the ‘write for us’ pages of blogs you know to be a great fit for your campaign, and see which keywords they tend to use there.

There are three main groups of phrases that they often mention there, which help you define the niche:

Broad topics - most of these pages will list broad topics that contributing writers are supposed to write about, so terms like:

  • Investment advice
  • Money management tips
  • Innovative businesses
  • Tech news
  • Starting a business
  • Financial management
  • Web design
  • Martech stack

Example topics - aside from giving you broad topical categories, these pages will often list some of the exemplary guest posts they received, along with their full title. Simply look for topics you know are common within the niche you are interested in:

  • 1..100 Best Tools for Project Management
  • Investment advice from experts
  • Best Wordpress plugins for

Advanced Tip: Two periods next to each other (..) are used in Google to signify range, so in the example above - 1..100 best tools - you would get results including any number between 1 and 100. This search trick works in Dibz as well.

Their audience - most ‘write for us’ pages will try to define the audience that guest bloggers will be writing for, which means you can use keywords like:

  • Business owners
  • Entrepreneurs
  • Startup founders
  • Webmasters
  • Software developers

Step 2: Advanced Parameters

To make things simpler, we use the term "advanced parameters" to describe the operator/footprint combinations you can find (or create) in Dibz. Like we mentioned, for this search, you need to use parameters that will instruct Dibz to look for collaboration pages on blogs.

Advanced Tip: In case you don’t know which footprints to use for your searches, check out the sites you already know as they are great prospects. See what phrasing they’ve used, and add that to your list of footprints.

  • inurl:/article-submission/
  • inurl:/contribute/
  • inurl:/get-involved/
  • inurl:/guest-blogging-guidelines
  • inurl:/guest-post/
  • inurl:/submit-article/
  • inurl:/write-for-us/
  • intitle:“Submit Guest Post"
  • intitle:“Submit an Article"
  • intitle:“Contribute to our site"
  • intitle:“Articles wanted"
  • intitle:“Become a Guest Writer"
  • intitle:“Guest Post Guidelines"
  • intitle:“Submission Guidelines"
  • intitle:“Editorial Guidelines"
  • intext:“Your article will be published"
  • intext:"We don’t accept topics related to gambling"
  • intext:"Write your article and send it in Word or Google Docs format"
  • intext:"Your post must be original"
  • intext:"NO advertising, NO promotion, NO commercial"

Advanced Tip: If the phrase you seek has multiple combinations that are similar, you can include them all in one query with the OR operator - ensuring Dibz, or Google, will check for them all. For instance, in the case of ‘write for us’ pages, you could create a string like:

inurl:"write us" OR inurl:"writers guidelines" OR inurl:"write for us" OR inurl:"submission guidelines" OR inurl:"contribute an article" OR inurl:"submit an article" OR inurl:"writing guidelines" OR inurl:"publish a guest" OR inurl:"guest post"

2. Pages With Published Guest Posts

Another great way to track down relevant tech, finance or business related blogs which are likely to publish your guest posts is to look for those that have been publishing them before. Find them by looking for something on a page which indicates that it is a guest post on a tech, finance or business blog. Since we covered how this would work in Dibz and in Google in the last section, we’ll simply list the best example search queries and footprints for finding guest posting blogs.

Keywords: Since you are looking for pages with the posts themselves, good keyword choices include:

  • The names of popular and prolific authors in business, finance and tech niches
  • The names of popular companies, events or laws often mentioned in the niche
  • The most common keyphrases specific to your niche, anything that could appear in the title of a post that you might pitch yourself, or that could show up as a category on a relevant blog

Potentially interesting keywords include:

  • webmasters tips
  • professional development
  • sales and marketing software
  • stock trading
  • task management
  • thought leadership
  • business AND tips OR advice OR mistakes OR lessons

Parameters Since most of the footprints used for this kind of search are found in the text of the page, you can just provide them without an advanced operator, or you could modify them with intext: but there is no real need to do so.

  • "contributing writer"
  • "guest blogger"
  • "guest contributor"
  • "guest column"
  • "guest post courtesy of"
  • "guest post was written by"
  • "community post, written by one of our"
  • "following guest post"
  • "guest post is from"
  • "guest post was written"
  • "guest article"

Advanced Tip: Google's AROUND operator allows you to specify the maximum number of words that separate the two names. You can use this to create a search like: Microsoft OR Dell intext:"guest post" OR intext:"guest article" AROUND(5) intext:"provided by" OR intext:"contributed"

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3. Look for Relevant Blogs in General

Many high-rep blogs are actually quite willing to publish relevant content of great quality, but they don’t really advertise that too blatantly. A lot of your best business, tech or finance guest posts are likely to be published on blogs that don’t necessarily have a ‘write for us’ page, but that are open to a well-researched and presented guest post pitch.

You have a lot of freedom to improvise here. You can use roughly the same keywords you used before, and try them out with footprints common for blogs. Since a lot of the best blogs in this niche will be on sites of various companies or agencies, you can also include the keywords describing these businesses.

Advanced Tip: Doing this kind of broader search in Dibz is a great way to quickly find which keyphrases or footprints are getting the most results in your industry. Simply take a look at your search queries in a completed search and compare the keyword/advanced parameter pairs. In other words, note how many results a particular keyphrase returned when combined with different parameters; or, how many prospects a particular parameter returned with different keyphrases.

Keywords

  • entrepreneur OR entrepreneurship OR startup OR start-up
  • business AND software OR intelligence OR management OR news

Parameters

  • inurl:/blog/ OR inurl:/insights/ AND inurl:/2018/
  • inurl:"about our company" OR inurl:"our team"

Forums

Like we said, forum links don’t have to be spammy if you don’t make them that way. Forums have a wide range of convenient footprints:

  • inurl:showthread
  • inurl:forum
  • intext:"powered by SMF" OR intext:"powered by Phbb" OR intext:"powered by IPB" OR intext:"powered by MyBB" OR intext:"powered by PunBB" OR intext:"powered by vBulletin"
  • inurl:/community/topics/
  • inanchor:"Forum Rules"
  • intext:"0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users"
  • inurl:forum.php?
  • inurl://forums *

To find relevant forums, simply combine some of these operators with keywords describing your niche; with a common customer/user question that you have a good answer for; or with nicknames of people you’ve seen frequently posting on forums you already know about (from the competitor research stage, for example).

Since one of the main benefits of forum links is the fact that they can attract people actually interested in becoming customers, you need to make sure that you are only targeting forums in locations where your client is offering their products or services, so adding location-specific keywords is usually highly recommended.

Local citations

Like with forums, local citation link building is sometimes described as a black-hat tactic, most often by people who seem to assume that if you are going to do something, you are necessarily going to overdo it as well.

Not only are local citation links not always black-hat, in some niches, most definitely including the business niche, you actually need them to prove your legitimacy, help Google recognize you as an entity, and perhaps even attract a fair amount of qualified traffic.

Aside from this, higher-quality directories with hundreds of listed businesses in your client’s industry are a great way to find blogs to guest post on. Simply examine the listed business which seem relevant to what your client is doing, and check if they have a blog they might need some content for.

Here are some of the footprints you can use to instruct Dibz (or Google) to look for business, finance or tech web directories.

  • inurl:/business-categories/
  • intitle:directory OR inurl:directory
  • inurl:submit intitle:directory
  • "free business directory"
  • intext:"review your listing" AND directory

The keywords or keyphrases you need to provide with these parameters can include the names of your competitors; your location; your exact niche, or niches related to yours; common services in your industry; etc.

Resource pages

Since all three of these niches are brimming with highly specialized expert research materials, books, case studies, whitepapers and the like, resource page link building for business finance and tech websites can be a very effective tactic. While you really need something special to get good response rates, the sites linking to you will often be quite authoritative. Some of the footprints you can use to find relevant business, finance or tech resources pages include:

  • inurl:links intitle:"link resources"
  • inurl:resources OR inurl:"favourite resources" OR inurl:links OR inurl:"favourite links"
  • intitle:"suggested websites" OR intitle:resources OR intitle:"recommended sites"
  • intitle:suggested OR intitle:recommended OR intitle:additional AND intitle:resources OR intitle:reading OR intitle:links

Complement these footprints with keywords describing the topic you have an interesting resource on; names of respected authors in the industry likely to show up in properly referenced research; names of the laws, techniques or services unique to your industry, and so on.

Broken links

When looking for interesting tech,business and finance related resource pages, you are likely to come across a number of broken links. Take note of these dead pages, see how many backlinks they have, and if it seems like it might be worth it, create a well-researched and written post that you can offer to webmasters as a replacement for the one that is no longer available.

Of course, you can also look specifically for broken links that are discussing a subject you already have an amazing resource about, saving even more time and money. The entire process is perfectly laid out in this Broken Link Building post by Ahrefs

Link reclamation

If you’ve been promoting your website for some time, chances are that you have not only created a ton of links to it, but that a fair portion of those links may have been removed at one point. You can use a scraper to check the health of your incoming links, find the ones which return a 404 or some other kind of error, and see if the webmaster might be willing to return your link if you informed them about the issue.

Unlinked brand mentions

Instead of searching for tech, business or finance websites which have a non-working link to your site, this tactic involves you looking for unlinked mentions of your brand name; of prominent members of your staff; of a valuable resource you have created or anything that might deserve attribution or that would be made clearer and more user-friendly by the addition of a link.

You can look for these mentions with Dibz and either manually examine which of them have a link to your site and which don’t, or compare the list with an export of your entire link portfolio from Google Search Console. Of course, if you have an Ahrefs account, they offer a much more streamlined way to do so, and we warmly recommend it for this tactic.

Outreaching business, tech and finance websites

If you want to do link building for a business, finance or technology related website, you need to be forewarned that these are among the most demanding niches when it comes to how you’ll formulate your outreach.

Instead of hypothesizing about what may or may not work as perfect outreach for finance, business and tech link building campaigns; we decided to simply ask the people who know the most about it - our link builders.

Here is a summary of some of their recommendations, along with an example email template. While we will talk mainly about outreach for guest posts, most of the advice below is applicable regardless of the exact link building tactic you decided to leverage.

  • Write short email subjects, without mentioning the phrase ‘guest post’. Attempts at humor in the subject of your outreach email are completely out of place if doing outreach for a business or finance site, and probably best avoided if you are promoting a tech-related client.
  • The text of the message should be short, to the point and pedantically formatted. You are dealing with detail-oriented people, whose time is precious and patience short. Sending a needlessly long or messy email may not only prevent your respondents from reading it through, it will set the expectations for the quality of content that you would send if your pitch was accepted.
  • The email should show that you know what you are doing. It should be addressed to the right person, and mention them by name, and even position, if available and relevant. The email should clearly show that you have been reading the blog for a while, which means that you must also take great care not to offer them a guest post on a topic they have already covered before.
  • Since most websites in business, finance and tech niches probably have at least some kind of a general plan for their editorial calendar, it is often better not to suggest a topic for the post in your first email, but allow them to list the subjects that are most interesting to them at the moment.
  • Most of these sites deal in complex subjects and they need some assurance that you are up to the task. You can provide that assurance by creating an online portfolio with links to the best articles on related topics that you have previously written and published on authoritative sites in the niche. Listing them directly in your email would take too much space and increase the chances of that email being labeled as spam.
  • Don’t try to be duplicitous or manipulative, as bloggers, especially those in these niches, are likely to recognize this. Instead, state your offer clearly; accentuate but don’t overestimate its value; and stay true to your promises if you actually secure the post
  • Mind the attribution and other legalities. While blogs in other niches may be a bit more lenient when it comes to properly sourcing images or other materials you’ve used in your post, business, finance and tech blogs don’t take this kind of thing lightly, and neither should you.
  • Always follow up. According to our internal statistics, introducing regular follow-up emails improved our response rates by 20% in the finance, business and tech niche, which is nothing to scoff at. Naturally, you shouldn’t keep pestering the bloggers and ruin any chance of a future collaboration, but sending one or two follow-up emails is highly recommended.

To see this in practice, here is an email template similar to what we would use for business, finance or tech guest posting outreach.

Hi [blogger’s name]

[Name] here. I'm a digital marketing specialist focused on helping startups and small businesses grow. I also write actionable posts about business and marketing, as it allows me to reach more people and help them on their business journey.

Besides being a regular contributor for [a blog you frequently post on], I occasionally write guest posts for other websites and I think I could make a valuable contribution to your blog [insert blog name] as well. Here's a link to my portfolio so you can get a taste of my writing style. [online portfolio link]

Let me know if you're interested in collaborating with me and if you'd like me to send you some topic ideas.

Looking forward to your reply!

Kind regards, [name]

Summary: Putting it All Together

Sure, creating backlinks for finance, business and tech websites is not the easiest job in the world, but this guide should be more than enough for you to drastically improve your efficiency in this regard.

From link building tactics like guest posting, local citation building, link reclamation or looking for unlinked brand mentions, to specific prospecting and outreach advice, this post attempted to cover all the specifics of trying to build links to business, finance or tech related websites.

Of course, seeing how this subject is not one that can easily be exhausted, if you feel like there is something we’ve missed, or haven’t explained in sufficient detail, do let us know, and we’ll rectify that error. In the meantime, enjoy your link building