Why Linkbait articles work for SEO

Posted on February 8, 2010


Some people just don’t understand linkbait. They fail to comprehend why adding a great page of content to your website benefits their site if it doesn’t directly offer to sell their products or talk up their services.

They are of course wrong, very wrong.

Linkbait is a page of content, an image, a video, a download (it can be anything really) that has been specifically designed to attract links. Its sole purpose is to get other websites to link to it.

The problem is, linkbait isn’t going to work if it’s an advert for your products. Why would anyone want to link to a page on your website that offers products and services? They wouldn’t. This is why many website owners fail to understand the relevance of adding linkbait to their website, insisting instead that their content is merely promotional – that’s the language they understand.

However, as we (and those with a firm grasp of SEO) well know, linkbait is priceless when it comes to Internet marketing… and here’s an example.

This post, about Internet Explorer being revealed as the cause of Google’s hack in China, didn’t speak about SEO services at all. It won’t make anyone reading it want to contact us and say ‘hey, how about doing the SEO for my website?’ – but that was never its purpose. Its purpose was to generate traffic and links, and that it did, in spades.

This graph shows our traffic for a few weeks in January. We think you can see when the Internet Explorer post was written.

SO what? So we got a load of traffic from it? What good does that do us?

Well, in addition to the traffic, we also received a number of relevant, high quality links from websites linking directly to the post on our website – even though we were by no means the first to post the news. All of those links count as votes within Google. They pass link juice (PageRank too, if you’re into that), which will help our website’s overall rankings within the search engines.

That is, after all, what linkbait is all about.

Do you still think that linkbait is pointless?


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