Motivating a Company to Invest in Backlinks but Difficult to Prove the ROI

How do you motivate a company to invest in backlinks when it's difficult to prove the ROI?
[filtered from 60 💬🗨]


Simple.. for limIted time use private blog network (PBN) backlinks if you have built them up and show them the results. Later after budget approval go with outreach etc..and remove the PBN links.
PBN sites are super powerful.
Backlinks have nothing to do with ROI.

Paul » Romaine
Everything can be measured in ROI…if you're task is to create backlinks then you need to show the potential impact it could make or not…
As Gary V once said "Whats the ROI of your mother?".
Listen, if you have clients asking about the ROI on backlinks you're doing something terribly wrong.
Discussions around » key performance indicators and return on investment « KPIs and ROI should have been had before you even started working together. Again, backlinks have NOTHING to do with ROI. Revenue does.
Ive been saying this for years. If its lead gen, then conversions (customer enquiries, calls/emails) should be tracked using an agreed lead/sale value and that should be reported against within Google Analytics (GA) using a filter to segment organic traffic only. If its e-commerce then you'll have sales data, so that's easy.
Dollar in, 5 dollars out.
Sitting in on a client meeting and saying "If we build 10 links a month then magic is going to happen" its absolutely meaningless.
But as usual I'm sure everyone will ignore this post and carry on arguing about backlinks and other pointless vanity metrics.
Everything you said I agree with, totally..apart from Gary V. How do you acquire back links, good back links not shitty ones from directories which I assuming you're thinking I'm talking about?You create content don't much would cost to create an article..lets say £200. There's your initial investment…from there on you use the metrics to measure the data, something along the lines of attribution modelling….If you're spending money, any money then you need to know how it will make an impact.
Chris » Paul
"If you're spending money, any money then you need to know how it will make an impact."
'you/US' knowing isn't what is being discussed here by John, what he is saying is that if you are allowing a client to micro manage every step then you've f*cked up badly!
Client yesterday, presented to him, laid out expected lead volume, ran the income from those leads, and then said 'by the way here are the results we have gotten for xyz in your industry after 18 months.
The presentation was based on 3 new subscribers a month, identical business in another area is getting 30 per month average.
What I did there was manage his expectations, present on a volume of 3, but also show him what can happen after 18 months!
If a client asked me why I was building links etc, then they wouldn't be my client
Why would you talk to any company about backlinks? That's like trying to sell a company optimizing images, or fixing heading tags, or writing meta tags. These are all just components and working towards an end goal – increasing sales or something similar. The ROI is based on the overall product, not a single component, which may or may not contribute to the overall objective.

I would say…our job is not to motivate…and don't waste time..move to a next customer.
Now a days..many customers feel that by using Ahrefs and SEMrush they know Search-Engine Optimization (SEO) be it.

Raker » Jvalin
And that customer gives their money to an SEO professional that can do the project without their ego getting hurt. Really?
Romaine » Cynthia
SEOs that know what they’re doing don’t work with clients that need motivating.
Raker » Romaine
SEO’s that know what they are doing don’t make comments like this.
SEOs they know..scroll down..and stick to the topic. I gave my opinion to the author..

Kling ✍️
I don't have a client, I work within the company (e-commerce, yes).
We have a site with approx. 30 000 pages and a revenue of approx. 100 million euros this year.
We work actively with SEO already (content, internal links, technical SEO and so on) but not actively with backlinks. The board has asked for answers on these questions regarding the ROI to be prepared to make this investment.
So with this information, what would your approach be?

Without having a lot more data it's hard to give an absolute answer, but, that said, they will be aware of the impact of the SEO to date (presumably) because they will have asked about the SEO ROI?
Armed with the increases obtained from the SEO efforts I'd present and explain that SEO is akin to a racehorse with on-site reputation content linking etc making up 3 of the legs, the 4th leg being 'peer and reputable citations'. In short what I say is 'Google only has 2 things to work out what you are and how good you are, what YOU say you are about (your site content) and what OTHERS say about you (citations mentions etc), Google puts a lot of weight on recommendations from other authoritative sites, because after all a person is only as good as their reputation!
Without authoritative links mentions citations, the SEO is a 3 legged horse, and 3 legged horses rarely win, unless of course, they are running against other tripeds 😃
So the ROI would be based on how high up you go in the rankings and what the likely increase in revenue is as a result.
I just can't see how you can measure/show an ROI on backlinks alone – especially when you are doing other things with your SEO at the same time.
The argument for the backlinks is more about how effective they will be to move your site up the rankings. Without knowing more about the backlinks or testing them, you won't know the effectiveness and therefore the chances of showing an improvement. Has the company offering you the backlinks offered you the chance to do a small case study to give you the chance to show a little bit of measured data?
Kling ✍️ » Chris
Thank you very much for your pedagogical explanation! It might help the board to get more understanding of the subject.
Chris » Kling
Thanks, I always try to make complicated tech things as understandable as possible to allow easier understanding.

I am working as in house SEO with same exact issue, every meeting with owner trying to show why we need to spend on links when they see no ROI ,"how many clients did this $130 link bring in". I finally found an explanation that got through his head.

Kling ✍️
Thank you for your answer! Nice to hear that someone has the same issue. Would you like to share your conclusion? That would truly be helpful.
PM me
Kling ✍️
I sent a PM!

A company shouldn't invest in backlinks. They need to invest in anything that brings them a profit. As a service, we're supposed to prove to them we can get them a measurable ROI.
Hey Kling,
Backlinks are Apt for sustainable ranking on Google.
Explain to them why is needed to get them for their domain, and what could be the possible business opportunities they can get after getting ranked on google 1st page.
But Don't influence them to spend money on the same.
There are many backlinks available in the market, which can be generated without spending a single dollar 🙂.
Guest Post is the Best example of the same.
Building Social Signals are Other Examples.
Now external linking those guest posts to your guest posting, and you'll have much better results, even not exceeding your company's total budget.
Let me know if this could be useful to you.
As you said it's a e-comm company then just get data from analytics , how much revenue is generated with every 1000 targeted visitors. Suppose it shows $1,000.
Make a list of keywords which you want to rank.
Assuming and combining all keyword search results. Consider 40% traffic comes in if all rank on 1st position.
As you already know you get $1000 revenue with every 1000 visitor. Get a revenue amount by assuming traffic when all keyword rank on position 1.
You can calculate keyword by keyword revenue
With whole set of keyword searches.
If your need backlink ROI then you can calculate competitor backlink and divide all with total revenue.
Now make a ppt or excell presentation which will surely help them to take a quick decision.
backlinks are probably the only way to get penalized. Especially for e-commerce sites, I would try to get them to ship products for free to websites for reviews. . Often you can build a web asset that generates links without much outreach efforts. I've built this page for example… that's useful to customers. I would focus on answering questions customers have and publishing guides, i published nearly 30k word guide. If you align with customers and present in a way that helps SEO, focus on customer problems and solve those, and optimize every page. Backlinks are a joke… 0 to 650K traffic without much backlinking is possible if you put the customer as the center of everything, instead of guest posts that nobody reads.

Smith » Palic
nice website 👌… (smart move with that page 👍)

Daniel 🎓
Nobody wakes up and goes "I need backlinks".
Links are a vehicle for something else. Watch Gary Wilson's recent interview on Chase Reiner's YouTube channel. The man (owner of the group) sells links for a living but even he has some very insightful things to say on the topic.…
Is Link Building SEO Dead? with Gary Wilson


This may satisfy you: A Client doesn’t Care about SEO Data. A Client Only Cares about Sales Improvement | ROI. Are Both Statements Often Right?


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