How I Got My 10 Best Links

by Jon Cooper

One of the things I’m going to be striving for in the future is being as transparent as possible. For bloggers who blog about making money online, they do a monthly income report. Since I’m a link building blog, I’ll go ahead and show you how I got my best links.

Keep in mind my blog is fairly new, so chances are you won’t be blown away with something like an in-content PR7 link from the New York Times. Instead, be glad that the links I’m getting are 100% white hat, and I didn’t have to be a rocket scientist to get them.

Let’s check out my best links according to Open Site Explorer, and how long it took me to get them:

NOTE: PA stands for Page Authority and DA stands for Domain Authority.

1. Ipwatchdog.com – PA 73, DA 69 (10 minutes)

This is from a blog I stumbled across that had a couple broken links in their sidebar. I let the webmaster know and asked for one of the external links to be replaced with a link to my blog, and ta-da, I got the link. All I had to do was run the Check My Links broken link checker on the home page and then write up a short email that got straight to the point.

2. SEOmoz Guest Post – PA 71, DA 95 (1.5 hours)

In October I wrote up a YOUmoz post on SEOmoz, and a couple of days after it got published, it got promoted to the main blog. The post took me roughly 90 minutes to wrote up, and I got two targeted anchor text links from it. If you haven’t, check out my case study on the success of this post.

3. Sivers.org/ff – PA 71, DA 72 (5 minutes)

This is a blog comment link from Derek Sivers’ blog. All of his links do not have the “nofollow” tag, so the links are a lot more valuable. This particular post has 450+ comments, so this particular link isn’t worth as much as you might think.

4. SEOmoz Profile Page – PA 67, DA 95 (5 hours)

Because I got over 200 MozPoints, the URL on my profile page no longer has the “nofollow” attribute. Those 200+ points took a lot of time to build up, so this wasn’t really worth the 5+ hours, but I wasn’t doing this for the link. Rather, this was just a byproduct of getting into the conversation in the SEO community.

5. www.gifthub.org – PA 67, DA 60 (10 minutes)

Once again, I got this link from finding broken links and letting the webmaster know. This is actually one of my favorite links I’ve ever gotten, because Phil Cubeta, the writer of this blog, was so appreciative that he wrote up a blog post about me. I wish more people were like Phil :D.

6. SEOByTheSea Comment – PA 64, DA 76 (5 minutes)

Luckily Bill Slawski is kind enough to help out his fellow SEOs by also removing the “nofollow” tag. It took me only 3-4 minutes to read this post and about a minute to jot down my thoughts. I’ve gotten 10-15 of these links, but the most notable according to OSE is the one above.

7. Wiep.net – PA 63, DA 57 (5 minutes)

Wiep Knol’s blog offers a recent comment section in his sidebar, and if you comment enough, the links will no longer have the “nofollow” attribute. Although this link is temporary, the link on the individual post still offers a little link love.

8. thewelltimedperiod.blogspot.com – PA 63, DA 96 (10 minutes)

Once again, this a link I got from broken link building. Yes, I do know the topic of this blog is extremely irrelevant to my blog’s topic, but a link is a link :).

9. seo.alltop.com – PA 61, DA 90 (10 minutes)

Just by submitting my blog to Alltop, I got a link on a page that’s not only authoritative, but also one that people actually visit. I’ve gotten roughly 50 visitors from this page in the last 60 days even though my blog is listed towards the bottom.

10. Microsoft Advertising Community – PA 65, DA 68 (10 minutes)

According to the OSE metrics above, it should be higher up on the list, but for some reason OSE isn’t seeing this link but it’s seeing every other link I have from this sitewide. I got this, once again, from broken link building. This is Microsoft’s official advertising community, so getting a link from a site that has been linked to by Bing 1000s of times is a pretty fantastic link, and all it took was a quick check for broken links.


No, you probably can’t get the majority of the links that I’ve gotten, but you can learn something from them. Broken link building is responsible for some of the best links I have, and the best in-content link in my link profile is from a guest post that took me no more than an hour and a half to write up. The thing I want you to take away from this post is that most of my best links didn’t take more than 10 minutes to get. Outside of the SEOmoz profile link & the guest post, it took me a total of 65 minutes to get these links. This doesn’t mean the same thing might happen for you, but it’s good to know at least someone out there is building white hat links with only a few minutes of their time.

Now I want to hear from you. What do you think? Can you apply any of the above strategies to your daily link building efforts? Make sure you leave a comment & tweet about this post to let your friends know what you have to say!

Don’t forget to follow me on twitter & add Point Blank SEO to your circles. Thanks for reading!


This post was written by...

Jon Cooper – who has written 129 posts on Point Blank SEO.

Jon Cooper is a link builder based out of Gainesville, FL. For more information on him and Point Blank SEO, visit the about page. Follow him on Twitter @PointBlankSEO.

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  1. Jason says:

    This is some good advice. I never though of link-building by checking for broken links, can’t wait to try it. Thanks!

  2. Good share mate. broken link building is super effective also for me.

  3. Robert says:

    Thank you for being so open about your link building tactics. It’s nice to see that people appreciate it when you point out a few broken links. Unfortunately this tactic has never worked for me, but after reading this I may keep trying.
    Out of interest, what tool do you find most effective for broken link checking?

  4. Jon-
    Impressive! I read a little bit more about you in the “About” section. It’s awesome to see a young adult so driven.
    We’ve been training new staff on broken links and outreach (on relevant sites for our clients). I’m sending them your way to this post since I think it’s pretty great what you’re doing.

    • Jon Cooper says:

      Thanks Heather! Glad to have your support. I’m guessing Nate told you to check out my blog? 😉

      • Heather - SEO Team Trainer says:

        He totally did! He said you were rock’n it with SEO. He didn’t say how you two were connected – just passed along this post. I also read your SEOmoz post. 😉

        • Jon Cooper says:

          “rock’n it with SEO.” – I might just add that to all my author bios.

          I found him on Quora and we got a chance to chat on a thread. And thanks for checking out the Moz post! I actually just finished a new one for them, so stay tuned over the next couple weeks for it!

  5. Matt says:

    Jon – some really insightful ideas here, and ones that I’m sure we can replicate in our own way. Thanks for sharing, this is something that most SEOs try to keep quiet about. Call them “industry secrets”!

    • Jon Cooper says:

      That’s why I’m striving for transparency. Just like you, I’m sick of the secrets. I’m actually going to be sending exact sites to get links from in my newsletter, so I suggest you sign up.

  6. Dan Callis says:

    Nice to see someone sharing information a lot would guard like top secret FBI files! Based on how you got number one, if I let you know in number two you have written “Wrote up” instead of “write up” can I have a link too?! 😉

  7. Mark says:

    Thank you for this, Jon. Really fascinating insight into how a creative minded link builder works. I am relatively new to this game and my colleague forwarded your interview with Ross Hudgens yesterday. That lead me to the Chrome broken links checker, which coupled with your advice above, may well revolutionise the way I work! Thank you for sharing your knowledge.

    • Jon Cooper says:

      That’s awesome Mark! I love seeing guys like you changing the way you build links for the better 🙂

      Hope to see you around the blog more in the future!

  8. Jon says:

    Hi Jon, is that a little typo in the above #2? “wrote up” 😉 Good stuff thanks.

  9. Some great tips there, thanks Jon. Never thought to look for broken links. Loved that one with the leadership video, and not just for the link opportunity. Reminded me of that ‘I’m Spartacus’ scene.

  10. Hey Jon, sorry it took me so long to read this post (I feel like that guy who shows up late to a party.) This is great. I love that you’ve had so much successes with broken link building. I would be interested to see an example email that you send webmasters. I’ll admit it, I have not had as much luck with this tactic. Most of the time my broken link requests go un-answered. Maybe, I need to work on the CRO of my broken link emails.

    Well, as always thanks for the post.

    • Jon Cooper says:

      Don’t worry about it Bryant, I’m sometimes the same way :).

      I’m actually putting together a huge list of real outreach examples in my upcoming course, so stay tuned for that! Because, like you, I know I feel the exact same way.

  11. I truly love your blog.. Very nice colors & theme.
    Did you create this site yourself? Please reply back
    as I’m hoping to create my own personal site and would like to learn where you got this from or just what the theme is called. Thank you!

How I Got My 10 Best Links - Point Blank SEO