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How Do You Measure Your Link Building ROI?

Nov 04, 2019

Written by Casey Bjorkdahl

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Casey Bjorkdahl is one of the pioneering thought leaders in the SEO community. In 2010, Casey co-founded Vazoola after working for a Digital Marketing Agency for five years in New York City. Vazoola is now one of the fastest growing and most widely recognized SEO marketing firms in the country.

How Do You Measure Your Link Building ROI?

Marketing is serious business, and in this case, companies cannot afford to throw out the weakest link.

Instead, all efforts must be maximized for the highest possible return on investment (ROI). This matters as the investment is significant. In 2019, advertising budgets exceeded 240 billion dollars.

With digital marketing taking the lead in today’s campaigns, many advertisers are putting dollars and time into link building efforts to strengthen their online presence.

There are numerous strategies businesses use to measure the ROI of marketing campaigns, but these figures are not always easy to analyze.

The Tricky Business of Measuring Link Building

Measuring the results of link building efforts is not straightforward, either for the short or the long term.

Internal links, as well as links to and from your website to other valid sites are a great way to build organic traffic.

Google Analytics reward relevant and useful links. Building links of high quality helps you rank higher in search engine results.

There are a few specific cases where you may see that links resulted in increased referral traffic and sales.

However, more often good links make your entire website and search engine optimization (SEO) campaign better.

Therefore, finding specific ways to measure link building results are not straightforward. But there are some areas marketers commonly examine with techniques and tools to scrutinize link building ROI.


Lots of website visitors are not necessarily a good thing if you have a low conversion rate. If nobody is buying anything, you are not generating revenue.

The best way to determine specific link value is to track traffic from individual links. Google Analytics is a helpful tool for this task.

But there are also numerous other software packages you can use for this purpose that give you a variety of metrics such as:

  • Average visit length
  • Unique visitors
  • Total visitors
  • Pages viewed per visit

There are many other measurements as well, and you study what you feel are essential aspects. For example, some marketers look at total visits, while others look at page views.

The goal of your specific link building campaign determines which metrics you use to determine success.

Google’s program, for example, lets you set up eCommerce tracking and sales goals. These elements can show you how many conversions specific links have generated for you during the campaign term.

Social Media Platforms

Using social media networks to measure link building ROI is particularly tricky because of the very nature of these platforms.

You can share a link to your website, but nobody may click on it for months. Or you might generate a great deal of traffic to your site but not get any revenue from these visits.

However, you could build valuable contacts that may help you in the long term. There are many unpredictable factors in social media marketing.

You cannot tell what will happen in the wild world of the Internet, but there are ways to get a handle on social media statistics.

One such tool is Crowdbooster, which lets you track specific metrics on Facebook and Twitter.

Search Engine Rankings

It makes sense that if you come up in the top three on the first search engine results page (SERP), you will probably get more traffic than if you showed up on page 6.

However, rankings are not always what they seem. You could get more conversions on page 6 than a poor site ranking at number three.

Therefore, a quality website with well-written, engaging material is so important. People share relevant information and are more likely to trust a quality site than a sloppy one.

You can use advanced tools such as SEOmoz and Authority Labs to track the value of rankings if you want an elaborate analysis of numerous keywords.

However, you do not need complicated methods to determine how your search engine rankings are serving you.

Use a spreadsheet and look at the pages yourself. Remember too that SERPs are mercurial and change constantly. 

With a lot of money and effort going into digital link building campaigns, it is vital to be able to measure how well the campaigns are working.

However, analyzing such efforts for ROI can be difficult. The best way to do this is to decide what metrics matter most to you and employ specific analytical tools to help you make the most of digital marketing to grow your business.

See Similar Articles:  Link Building

Related Posts

What is Link Prospecting?

Does Link Building Still Work?

How to Get Backlinks Indexed Faster

When Should I Start Link Building?

Unlinked Mentions: Hidden Gems in Your SEO Treasure Chest

Understanding Link Relevance in SEO

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