The topic of getting links to boring web sites or web sites that compete with dozens or hundreds of other web sites is not new. If you sell widgets and there are hundreds of other sites that sell the same widgets, then how do you drive up interest to get people to link to your site?
A WebmasterWorld thread has one person even asking if doing link bait type of stories will change the topicality of his site and result in his rankings to go down.
So if he creates an article about his topic but it is about "avoiding" his topic, is that going to hurt him? This is what he wrote:
Site about widgets. Widgets are boring. Very few people link to sites about widgets.
Created page on site, example.com/how-to-avoid-crimes-involving-widgets
Good link bait this page, lots of people link to it, page gets more links than the home page and all other pages combined.
Is this going to change how the search engines see the site, topically speaking. Will this site go from being classified as a site about widgets to a site about "how to avoid crimes involving widgets" because of this link bait?
In my opinion, no - this is a good idea. As long as the article is about his widgets, even if it is anti his widgets, it is still the same topic.
I get these phone calls and emails all the time... The site owner complains that no one will link to them because they are selling boring stuff.
I try my best to explain that you need to get out of your box and think bigger.
I give examples of how my boring web development company (scary link but I vouch, it is a good guy) has drum up a ton of real links through crazy ideas on mobile apps. Heck, we even build some jewish software, a really boring religion, for Jewish iPhone apps, Jewish Android apps and even Jewish Google Glass software and believe it or not, it drives tons of traffic and links.
This helps us with a few things:
(1) Showcase our talents
(2) Help a community we are passionate about
(3) Get buzz about our company, which drives links as well.
Look how much attention JewGlass received and trust me, we are working up new concepts all the time.
So if my boring web development company can use a boring religion to make buzz and get links, I bet your company can do the same.
Come up with a wild software idea, be it an app, glass software, web site tool, a nice piece of content, or something else. Do it, take the risk and let's see if it pays off.
So yes, boring sites have a tough time getting links. For a boring site to get links, you need to create some life on the site.
Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.