How To Get Your First Local Small Business Website Links

Local Community Event in Grassy Park

Your new website is done. It’s ready for visitors to come pouring in. Google knows about your website; it has started indexing some pages; now what?

The reality is that even if Google knows about your website and starts indexing pages, they’re not likely to rank high at first. Even the most well-built website won’t rank for some time, even for your business name and location. Facebook, Yelp, and other profile pages will likely rank first for some time.

You can share your website on social media, but that will only get you so far. Of course, a website will always lend your business more credibility if it’s professionally built and you put it on your business cards, ads, and other marketing material.

Your website needs to rank in searches for customers to find it. Your content is great, it’s optimized for local searches, but there’s one more key thing your website needs to start ranking higher in searches.


Links are essential for ranking higher in search results, even for local searches. For a local business, you must have some local authority. As soon as your website is live, update every profile you have to point to your website. That means Yelp, Google Business Profile, social media profiles, etc.

Links from local websites are going to boost your website. The most valuable links will be other websites that serve your local community. Outside of your social profiles, there are many options for getting links to your website that will ultimately help it rank better in search engines.

These tips will give you ideas about getting local links from valuable sources. They’re guaranteed to provide a boost for your business. The more links you get towards the top of the list, the better off you’ll be. That means more searches your website will rank for, leading to more leads for your business.

8 Local Links Strategies

This list is full of the best ideas to get valuable local links for your website. They’ll lend authority to your website, making search engines trust and rank it higher. They hold local sway and will help you rank even higher in local searches.

These are ranked from most effective to least effective. You should find the best balance for you with what’s easiest vs. how high on the list it is, which will give you more benefits.

1) Local News Features

Few things are more powerful than being featured in a new article for a local news organization. That means you get mentioned or written about, and the article is posted online with a link to your business.

That’s valuable.

Getting featured in a TV segment is cool, but it won’t do you much good unless people go out and Google you after that. It should be written, and there should be a link.

The next best thing if you can’t get a link is to have some sort of contact information cited on the page, too. That could mean it has your business phone number or maybe address. These won’t be as valuable, but they could benefit your business in the long run.

2) Local Education Sites

This one is powerful because education websites often hold a lot of sway in the local community. They’re frequently at the center of the community in many ways.

If you create a good resource that fits into an education website’s content, ask them if they want to link to it. If you can get that link, your website will get a considerable authority boost in the eyes of search engines.

You could even start a local scholarship for a college, even if small. That will guarantee they link to your website because they often have scholarship resource pages. You could even sponsor a school event; they may mention and link to your website on the event or sponsorship pages.

The local school near me does a fun run every year and calls for local business sponsors. Part of each sponsorship package is a link on the school’s sponsorship page, a great benefit to a local business.

3) Sponsor A Local Event

There are constantly local events for cities and counties in every area across the United States. You can usually sponsor any of these events and get your logo included on the event material.

Also, sometimes, you may even get a link on the event page for sponsoring an event. These are local events with local authority and will often get you an authoritative local link to your website.


Almost every local community event raises money for the event at least partially from business sponsors. If you ask for a link on the event page, that’s an opportunity. Ask, and you shall (likely) receive.

4) Other Local Businesses

This one could be a bit more tricky because you’re pitching to a business. You’re not likely at all to get a link to a competing business, but there’s plenty of opportunity for businesses that complement yours.

It may be as simple as writing a review for a local business that loves that review and posts it on its website. If they include a link to the person who left the review (you!) for authority, you just scored a local link.

You can either go for the review link or provide a valuable local resource that works well for another local business’s website as a resource.

5) Host a Community Event

Everyone loves free stuff. They’ll also share the crap out of free stuff on social media.

If you can tie these both together, you could get massive hype on social media for an event page on your website. While these are almost always nofollow links (not as powerful as dofollow), they are still from a local audience and will help you.

Heck, your community event could get picked up by local news, which could give you massive local link power. So, it can lead back to the first option, one of the most powerful links you can get. It’s a great way to connect with the community and build local notoriety.

6) Local Chamber of Commerce

This is one of the easiest links to get aside from a local business directory. It’s usually only one link, but it’s for a local chamber of commerce in your city, which is excellent for you. Local links for your business website will lead to a higher ranking in local searches.

Ensure you’re a member, and you’ll get a listing in the business directory, which is often a dofollow link. That can be powerful, especially if your competitors don’t have one. Even if they do have one, that’s an excellent case for you to become a member!

If your competitors have a link in the local chamber and you don’t, they have the upper hand and will rank higher in local searches than you.

7) General Business Directories (General Citation Sites)

This is the most common yet overlooked method of building a great local link foundation for your website because it can be tedious. Your business should be listed in every local business directory that makes sense for your business.

This will help give you the essential links you need. When added up, it can have a significant impact. If your competitor has local directory links built up and you don’t, you’ll be behind in search engine ranking.

The best part is that this one is so easy to do that it’s a must-do.

Ensure you also keep your holiday hours updated and post to your Google Business Profile regularly.

8) Local Business Directories (Local Area Citation Sites)

There are many local business directories for the state and even local cities where your business is located. These can be an essential method of establishing your business locally and getting a somewhat valuable backlink to your business. It won’t boost you to the top, but every link moves the needle.

Check out this BrightLocal blog post that lays out ALL the top citation sites in every US state. Just click on your state, and it’ll jump down to a list of the top citation sites for your state and whether it’s free to list your business, paid, or if they have free and paid options.

Links Away!

Hopefully, this gave you some great ideas for getting those first links for your website. The most powerful links might not always be the best place for you to start. They will give you the most powerful boost, though.

Sometimes, it’s easier to start at the bottom with a good solid foundation of links and then work your way up. The links at the bottom are the easiest and almost necessary for a basic link foundation for your local small business website. Without them, you’re bound to be behind your competition in local links, which means the more powerful links won’t be as powerful unless you have the less important yet still foundational links.

Here’s how I’d approach my first links built:

  • Directory listings as many places as I could get them.
  • Join the local chamber of commerce.
  • Sponsor an event.
  • Get featured in local news.
  • Create something valuable for a local education website.
  • Write a review for another local business.
  • Host a community event.

All these links will be helpful, but some are more than others. You have to weigh the options for you and what time allows for. What works for you comes down to the ease of getting the link and the effectiveness of the link. Some are necessary, but others might be more powerful.

Good luck with link building. Now go out there and rank high in local searches because local searches aren’t the same as general searches!

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