What is a backlink, and why should I care?
One of the most important aspects of online marketing - which is foreign to most CPAs and tax accountants - is backlinking. A backlink is a hyperlink pointed to your website from another site, or it can also be a link within your site that connects one page to another. Backlinks are one of the keys of online marketing for savvy webmasters, and they are essential to your website ranking higher in the search engines.
The search engines will give your website a higher ranking in results if they see high-quality, related backlinks to your website. Backlinks can be geography-related, meaning a link from another business or website within your community, or niche-related, like a tax-related blog or website.
To get even more bang for your buck with backlinks, try to link the actual keyword terms to your site. For example, I could link the phrase "Malibu Tax Preparation" from my leereams.com homepage to the Tax Preparation section within my website. Or I could write a press release on Patch.com that links the phrase "Malibu Tax Preparation" back to my website. The search engines will identify these terms with my website and return better search results.
ClientWhys has a testimonial section on our blog where we provide complimentary backlinks to customers who have provided us with nice comments about our products or services. Yes, it is a little quid pro quo. We will add a backlink for your site when you submit a testimonial to us. Just email firstname.lastname@example.org with a testimonial and the keyword phrase you want us to use to link back to you. It's a big step toward getting better search engine results.
Click here to view a sample backlink. Notice this client is on Google page 1 for their keywords.
You can also set up backlinks with customers who have businesses in your area. Provide a section on your website or tax blog where you showcase clients and link to their sites. Ask each of them to reciprocate with a backlink to you. It doesn't take many links to start moving up, and the rewards will be well worth the effort! Make it a pre-tax season project.
Lee Reams II
I am a marketing junkie who has spent the last 20 years developing and executing "best in class" word-of-mouth marketing campaigns. With over 10,000 happy clients I think we are on to something. The explosion in web marketing and social media have redefined the way independent professionals market their practices. Follow my blog to see if you can take some of our actionable ideas to market your own practice.