Educational websites are one of the most sought-after backlinks. This isn’t surprising since Google’s algorithm highly values university backlinks as they’re chock-full of valuable information
Acquiring a .edu domain is a difficult process as you’ll need to meet all the requirements to verify your authenticity. It’s this verification process that gives these .edu sites the influence it enjoys when it comes to ranking and authority, hence why other sites are after them.
However, it can be challenging to acquire backlinks from university websites. The good news is that there are steps you can follow to acquire backlinks from universities. Here are seven of them.
1. Broken Links in Resource Pages
One of the most common techniques used in this strategy is to find the resource page of a university site that is relevant to your business. For instance, if your niche is in the photography industry, you should find a university that is dealing with that discipline. Now, it’s quite easy to find the resource page of your industry on Google.
Simply enter this on the search bar: site:.edu photography + inurl: resources.
You’ll want to change “photography” to the business you’re in so that you’re good to go. To find broken links, use Chrome’s “Check My Link” extension and have it run on a resource page. Once you’ve found your target, you can cover the content of that link on your site, then reach out to the university and convince them to use your piece as a working substitute.
Note, however, that you should contact the assistant lecturer rather than the main lecturer since the former is mostly responsible for updating the site’s courses.
2. Provide More Content for Resource Pages
While the broken link method might work, there will be some cases when you don’t find any of them on a university’s resource page. In this case, you might want to scan the listed resources to see whether or not you can add more value to the page.
If you’ve been in your niche for years, chances are you’re up to date with the current trend in the industry and know a couple of tricks that might help a student. You can use this expertise to give a detailed explanation about a specific technique and post it on your site. Then, you can contact the assistant lecturer and pitch your piece to them.
You can also check out the link of a resource page to see if the information in the article missed a significant section or a blank slate that you can fill. The idea here is to provide more value to the resource page, information that can ultimately help university students become better at what they aspire to be.
3. Offer Staff & Student Discounts
Giving university staff and students discounts on your product is another excellent way to get them to backlink your site. After all, who doesn’t want to receive incentives from a business that only asks for something as small as a backlink?
A great example of this is what Adorama is doing. Adorama is a video and photography business that’s been operating in the industry for over 33 years that offers staff and students who are in the “film, video, photography, graphic design, audio, or new media departments” discounts on a variety of products.
Applicants simply need to fill out a form and submit the requirements to enter the program. This program is an excellent way of getting on the radar of universities, which can then be used to build a network in the long run.
4. Collecting Data and Conducting Research
Providing extensive data and comprehensive research in your field is also a great way for universities to backlink your site. And since cultivating a business needs these two anyway, there’s a high chance that you already have a background on the entire process.
This time, however, your piece should be angled in a way that can benefit students. The idea is to add value in your industry, whether you’re involved within the Los Angeles SEO agency or moving in the creative writing ecosystem.
Of course, it will be challenging to collect this information and arrange them in a way that can be beneficial. But if you do it right, universities may link your piece on their platform.
5. Offer a Scholarship
Giving out a scholarship can be a great beacon to capture the attention of universities as well. First, you want to research what sort of scholarship you should offer. Understand the necessary requirements to enter the event, criteria, and the reward. For reference, you may want to do a bit of digging to see the kinds of scholarship being offered.
To do this, enter on the search bar: site:.edu “scholarships” followed by your niche.
Taking our photography example above, here’s a sample of what a scholarship program looks like. After arranging all the details, reach out to a university and tell them about your scholarship program.
6. Collaborate with Students
In some universities, administrators let students contribute to their site’s blogs. You can take advantage of this by collaborating with these students, either by pitching or paying them to backlink useful articles on your site that have already been published.
If you’re already an established leader in your niche around your area, you might have an easier time convincing these students to link your piece. Otherwise, you’ll have to pay them for the backlink, which is still a sound investment considering the return.
7. Interview Professors
Aside from students, you can also collaborate with university professors by interviewing them and asking for their insight. This doesn’t only open up the possibility of a .edu domain backlink, but you’ll also be building your network with people from the inside.
Once your article is published, make sure you notify the professor you’ve interviewed. You can also ask them if they’ll consider adding your piece to their resource page. Just remember: the higher the quality of the article, the higher the chances of it getting backlink by the university site.