Vacation Rental SEO: backlinks
Written by Kelly Odor
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Getting backlinks to your vacation rental website is one of the best way to increase rankings in Google. But what are backlinks? And how can you get them. Read on to find out.
What are backlinks for vacation rentals?
A backlink (or inbound link) is when an external website links to your vacation rentals website. The action of having backlinks to a website is a significant factor in increasing the website's ranking in search engines like Google.
It's that simple.
But not all backlinks are equal. Let's find out more.
Attract High Domain Authority backlinks
Google assesses each website for its quality and gives it a score, called a 'Domain Authority' score. In the most basic terms, the higher score, the better.
Companies such as universities, the press and charities are given a much higher score than companies like your local pizza shop.
So having one link from a higher 'Domain Authority' website is more effective than 100 links from low quality websites.
Google also assesses the relevence of the company in relation to your company.
So a link from a holiday travel company is more relevent to your business than a link from that local pizza company. Google will value that link higher.
Understand the complex algorythm of backlinks
It's never as simple as it looks.
Google looks at a variety of different aspects, combining different factors before deciding on what it thinks of your backlinks.
Looking at the examples above of relevance and quality, it may be better to have a link to your vacation rental website from Travel Weekly than The Guardian as this has relevence AND is high quality.
Attract backlinks over time
Google values a steady stream of backlinks over time more than a lot of backlinks appearing at one time, and then no further links being added.
Just like your blog content, attracting backlinks to your holiday rental website must be an ongoing task.
Quantity is important
Although quality is definitely more important than quantity, it is still a factor. Getting one link, or two is not enough.
Look for ways of getting easy backlinks, as well as creating a longer term backlink strategy, and mix the two so you can plan getting that steady stream.
Check your Domain Authority and backlinks
To see the Domain Authority of your website, simply check ahrefs free authority checker and enter your website.
Domain Authority is on a scale from 0 to 100, 0 being low, and 100 being the dream.
And to see how many backlinks you already have, try ahrefs backlink tool.
3 suggestions for building backlinks
There are as many methods for creating backlinks as there are fish in the sea.
Ultimately what you choose to do to attract backlinks comes down to the time you are willing to invest in the project.
Backlinks require effort. And this effort is rewarded, but it takes time.
We've covered 3 methods below, but we'll cover more in a future article.
1. Review your social media
This is an easy place to get started.
Look at your social media accounts. If you don't have any, time to get started.
Update your account to ensure that your description of your company is relevent, with smatterings of the keywords you have chosen and has a link back to your website.
Then consider your content. An easy option is to use your photos.
In the vacation rental industry we are blessed with the opportunity to have stunning images of the properties, as well as the local area. Upload these regularly and link back to your site.
2. Check your competitor backlinks
SEO is always a chance to use your secret spying skills on the competition.
Look at your competitors backlinks using a free tool like neilpatel.com/backlinks.
The simplest option is to identfy backlinks that you will be able to easily attract, such as sites with backlinks, such as press release sites or quality industry reference sites, like Yell.com.
Watch out for the Spam score though, if the backlink has a Spam score of more than 30%, then don't try for that link as Google won't value it.
3. Consider what makes you special.
Then take a good look at you and company. You are unique, and the trick is to find how that can benefit you.
I'd recommend making a list of the following:
- Where you / your colleagues were educated
- What clubs you / your colleagues are in
- What hobbies you / your colleagues have
- Unique aspects of your business eg, female directors, a positive employment plan to employ people with disabilities, a strict environmental code of conduect.
- Charities your business supports (or could support).
Once you have this list, review how these could work to attract backlinks:
eg. Could you give a presentation at your educational facility as an ex-student about being a female entrepreneur in the tourism industry, in exchange for a link from the educational facilities website.
or. Could you find articles written about environmentally friendly companies, and discuss providing a quote, or an interview about your business practices.
Whatever you decide to do in order to attract backlinks to your vacation rental website, it's important to be conscious of the effort required.
It's a long, slow process. But those who understand this, and make the effort, will benefit in the longer term.
For other articles on SEO please see our SEO series on:
If you think your vacation rental website needs our SEO services, check out our SEO Service for vacation rentals in the UK.
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