ESM Digital's Higher Ed Marketing Blog

Take a Chance on Some Outbound Links

Admit it. Even if you were only half-joking, at one time or another you’ve asked someone on your marketing team to make something go viral. As if it were that easy.

But of course that is what you’re dreaming of. You want hordes of prospects to come to your website looking for your great content. It’s that inbound traffic that you’re really after. So why would you send people away from your website with outbound links? Here are 4 reasons, but can you think of others? Let us know.

It adds credibility. When you link to reliable and relevant outside sources, you increase your own credibility. Your prospects pay attention to the company you keep and if they trust your “friends,” they’re more likely to trust you.

It creates a better user experience. Outbound links are like reader rewards that give the user even more of what they came looking to you for.  Let’s say you produce an awesome infographic on what it’s like to be a medical assistant and one of the points you note is that people in the profession really like what they do. When you add a link to where you got that information, your reader can learn even more about what it’s like to be a medical assistant.

Search engines like outbound links. In part it’s because of that user experience. You’re rewarded from an algorithmic point-of-view when users go to your website and get what they expect to find. But search engines (like those users who find you credible) also judge you by the company you keep. If you link to sites that the search engine considers “spammy,” your ranking will suffer. On the other hand, if you link to trusted sites, you’re more likely to be rewarded.

It’s like networking. Wouldn’t you be more likely to link to a site that links to you? Same goes for those you link to. When you use outbound links, you build your network and increase the likelihood that someone will return the favor. You may even be approached to host or be a guest blogger. It’s all one big happy internet network. Don’t you want to be a part of it?

If you’d like to learn how to include outbound links into the content you create, contact us at Effective Student Marketing and we’ll show you how.

~Linda