Donating to Charities for Link Building

Jan 4th
posted in

SEO Question: I read your book and it said you could get links from charities. Do you have a list of the best charity websites to get on or ones you have gotten on? It feels kind of awkward to ask a charity if they will give you a link back if you pay money, that's why I want to contact ones you have already contacted.

SEO Answers: Not sure how good of an idea this is to answer this one publicly, but why not, eh.

There is a thin line with the etiquette to it, so its really something you need to research and feel out. It is not something you just want to work off a list with.

Search for stuff like

  • sponsors

  • donors
  • donations
  • please visit our sponsors
  • thanks to the following donors
  • etc

After you find a few websites that are leveraging the donation angle
you can follow their paths by doing a Yahoo! linkdomain search for their domain and text that would indicate they were working the donor angle (for example linkdomain:www.site.com sponsors).

A few things I would also say about the donation angle:

  • If your site is high profile and the donation cost is far less than the value of the link then quickly others will follow where you have been to lower the value of that link.

  • If you do not have many legitimately earned quality links and most of your links come from spammy bits of the web (like junk web directories and scraper sites) and donation pages then that might mess up your link profile (since your co citation data will put you in the neighborhood of a bunch of spammy sites).
  • The best donation links to get are things that are a one time occurring event AND on topic. After the one time events have passed you do not have to worry about the page becoming filled with thousands of spammy links. If it is on topic it is icing on the cake as well. Here is a great example: a cat site or pet site helping buy the new server for the Kitten Wars site.
  • Sponsoring newsletters and the like can be cool as well, as those tend to get less links per page. Our link suggestion tool may help you come up with a variety of other link getting ideas.
  • Donations that do not look like donations are great. The more abstract your donation the better off you are. So for example if you donate an information product you made that might be hard for others to find and replicate that link (or know why a particular person linked at you). The same is true for those who donate hosting, web design, or logos to great causes. Some people even work eBay auctions into their donation angle.
  • Even if search engines do not count the donation links for a long time they still are usually cheap enough that the ROI should be there if your business model is sound. Again though they should only be one part of your overall link profile.
Published: January 4, 2006

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Comments

March 28, 2006 - 4:44am

It seems the question is backwards.

Look for non profits you can help in your subject area. Do a 500 word article about the Non profit first and then ask for a reference via link. There can be no "angle" just pick one you are willing to support for free with no return and you will get tons of links. The rest will follow. 1.333333

March 7, 2008 - 2:40am

I have been doing a lot of link building lately and have been researching many sources for information. Thanks Aaron, great article, that's a great way to get quality links.
http://www.seopractices.com

July 17, 2008 - 7:04pm

What do you mean by 'link profile?'

What do you mean by this bullet in particular"

"If you do not have many legitimately earned quality links and most of your links come from spammy bits of the web (like junk web directories and scraper sites) and donation pages then that might mess up your link profile (since your co citation data will put you in the neighborhood of a bunch of spammy sites)."

Thanks,
Lane

July 18, 2008 - 3:12am

link profile = the look/feel of your overall inbuound links

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