10 Great Examples of Link Bait

24Jan08

Sites and blogs of all sizes are increasingly taking advantage of link baited articles to build links virally and gain visitors from social media sites. But how much attention you get from a blog essentially comes down to the quality of your entry. If you put time and effort into a creating a quality piece of link bait you will reap the results. Below are ten great examples of link bait entries that did just that.

Rhea Drysdale – SEO Dream Team

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 96

The SEO Dream Team may not have attracted the most links out of all the articles that made the list, but I think this page deserves more credit. The blogger did everything right. First of all the site has a great modern layout and a field in technology is the topic, SEO. Bloggers in the search community, like myself, are more likely to link to entries we enjoy then say a person blogging on cats.

Also, the “dream team” is broken down into six well known members of the search community and there are links to each individual’s blog. This is a great way to get attention and even links back to your page as most bloggers usually keep a close watch on inbound links or referring traffic sources. The fist comment on this entry was actually made by one of the six people on the list, who likely linked to the link bait form his own blog.

Finally, if you look at the entry you will see that the blogger included Simpson like caricatures of each person on the list. This is a great example of using a current trend to get more attention to your link bait. The Simpsons Movie was a huge hit this summer and had a huge push in the social media community.

Mixed Markets Top 10 Reasons Why This List Will Be Popular on Digg

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 154

This blog has an obvious goal with this piece of link bait, to get on the home page of Digg. Mission accomplished. This post may not have the most inbound links, but it did have over 5500 Diggs.

The blog has a clean layout with unobtrusive advertisements and they have a very modern looking logo. The text of entry is useful and informative and is written in a very unique and engaging style. Additionally, the site utilizes the popular “top 10 list” format that social communities love.

This entry is a great example of how referencing Digg, or any other social tagging site, in your link bait piece can help get attention from that specific community. They even made it easy for visitors to vote on their entry by prominently including the Digg button at the beginning of the post.

SEOmoz Top 100 Digg Users Control 56% of Digg’s HomePage Content

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 346

This is another great example of referencing Digg in a piece of link bait to get attention from Diggers. However, this entry takes it one step further by specifically referencing twenty Digg power users. Doing this encourages the users to read and tag the entry, similarly to how referencing another blog encourages them to link back to you.

SEOmoz is a very well known site in the SEO community and has a large readership of people who are heavily active on social media sites, especially Digg. Their content is well written and the site features a very clean web 2.0 design. But most importantly, they are presenting new and useful information that their readers will want to share.

The AfterEllen.com Hot 100 List

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 1,069

If top 10 lists are effective at getting viral links to a blog, imaging how many links a top 100 or 101 list can get. The AfterEllen.com editors put together a quality list with a strong appeal to their Lesbian target readership. However, this list also does a great job of appealing to the social media marketing community.

The list features 100 attractive, well-known women with accompanying pictures. Not surprisingly the pictures usually feature the ladies in a state of undress, which greatly encourages the readers to click through the pages to view the entire entry. The site’s layout is nice, but I definitely would not consider it web 2.0. It only goes to show that sometimes a site’s design can take a backseat to quality content.

Lifehacker Top 10 iPhone applications

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 2,030

This is yet another great example of using a top list in link bait. However, it is an even better example of providing useful information on a topic that was very popular in the social media communities. Anything Apple or iPhone related often gets a lot of attention and inbound links, but this entry goes above and beyond just riding a trend with regurgitated information. They actually provide something useful to their readers. They also make it easy for their visitors to share the link by including prominent links to multiple social media communities.

The style of the entry is very simple and to the point. It’s just a numbered list with screen shots of each web application. They are giving their readers exactly what they want without too much additional text. This article is a great example of a very simple but effective piece of link bait.

Performancing 10 Articles All Bloggers Should Read (at least once)

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 2,055

Ok, I promise this is the last “top 10” like article to appear on this list. But I think it really stresses the point that lists are highly effective at getting attention to a piece of link bait. Readers of the social media community like things straightforward and to the point. Lists are a great way to display useful information without too much fluff.

Again, this blog has a very clear target readership and they are providing useful information to them with short engaging snippets. But one thing I really like about this entry is that it also provides links to pages that contain more detailed information about each topic. This makes it very easy for readers to spend a long time on the site reading multiple pages.

Engadget Blu-ray vs HD DVD: State of the Division

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 2,373

Engadget’s Blue-ray vs HD DVD entry is another great example of blogging on a popular topic to get attention to a piece of link bait. They provide quality facts and display them in a brief background and easy to read tables of data. Additionally, they present the information through a non biased perspective as to not turn off readers that might not support their opinion.

The site features a very clean and modern look with a blue, gray, and white color theme. It has a very engaging structure with links to multiple other places of interest in the site. They also have a comment system that further encourages user interactivity with Digg-style comment voting.

2decides 2008 Presidential Election Candidates on the Issues

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 6,614

2Decide’s Presidential Candidate table is another great example of providing information on a popular topic from an unbiased point of view. The data is displayed in a simple yet interactive design with custom icons. Notice how the column and row are highlighted when you scroll over to make it easy for users to see the information. They also make links to social media communities very prominent on the page, which always encourages readers to vote.

One specific part of this page I like is that it shows the last time the table was updated at the bottom of the page. This shows that the website owner intends to keep the chart current and 100% accurate. This strongly encourages repeat visitors and also gives the site a little more credibility.

SingleGrain 301 Useless Facts

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 16,105

Useless fact lists always work well for link bait as people just love finding out new information. That is why off beat news stories do so well in social tagging communities. The person writing for this blog obviously knew that, as their site is actually search engine marketing company. Quality search engine marketing terms are very difficult to rank for because of very strong competition. However, this site was able to effectively use a piece of link bait to get over 16,000 inbound links which has likely helped them rank for competitive keywords.

The site has a very clean structure, with content broken down into short numbered facts. Not only are the facts interesting but many are targeted to members of social media communities. Take these two facts for example: “the Declaration of Independence was written on hemp (marijuana) paper” and “it’s estimated that at any one time around 0.7% of the world’s population is drunk”

SEOmoz’s Web 2.0 Awards

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Yahoo’s inbound link count: 1,331,239

SEOmoz is a great example of a site that knows how to use successfully create and use link bait, which is why it appears on this list twice. I’ve seen the CEO & Co-Founder Rand Fishkin speak at a few conferences and he is very skilled at getting links to a page. His site is extremely well known in the search engine community and has millions of inbound links.

Again any type of awards or list is a great idea to use for a piece of link bait as it can attract links from sites that are featured. Especially if your site or blog is as highly visible in a niche community such as SEOmoz is. The awards were given out to over 200 websites in 41 different categories, and SEOmoz even created a little award badges for winners to display on their sites. They are attractive web 2.0 graphics that are a designed to make it easy for other sites to link to the page. They even had interviews with 15 founders of some of the winning sites. SEOmoz’s web 2.0 awards are an excellent example of going above and beyond to generate interest and links for a piece of link bait.

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3 Responses to “10 Great Examples of Link Bait”

  1. Great report you have here.. will wait for more of your great post..

    Azlan
    Online Business with a kampung boy
    http://www.azlanhussain.com

  2. Good post, and I appreciate the mention!

  3. Thanks for the mention.


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