Barnacle SEO: How To Leverage The Authority Of Top-Ranking Websites

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The huge competition on the internet makes it really challenging for you to achieve the target concerning SEO, organic traffic, rankings, etc. Yes, the right keyword and quality content cater to the website ranking but it can be really difficult to rank your website for all the keywords out there especially if you are a startup company or small business. It becomes nearly impossible to beat the competition. That’s when Barnacle SEO comes for help. 

What is Barnacle SEO?

Barnacle SEO is a strategy that allows the business or a website to connect itself to one of the prominent or significant websites that has a predominant ranking for its needed keyword. This would lead to improved traffic and leads which potentially results in rankings. In simple words, barnacle SEO is a strategy that leverages the authority of a high-ranking website for keywords that are extremely competitive for boosting your content, product, or brand. 

Barnacle SEO will help you to increase your ranking by giving you the desired exposure which would be impossible to achieve otherwise. You can do this with the following activities:

You should thoroughly understand this strategy because it can be confusing initially. Ensure that the quality and ranking of the content you put forth should coordinate with the targeted website. There are many benefits of using Barnacle SEO such as improved search engine rankings, more targeted traffic, increased visibility, and high brand awareness. Having said this, there are drawbacks as well – it can be time-consuming in the SEO world. It might take quite some time for you to find a suitable website to get your content attached. 

How is Barnacle SEO Different from Classic SEO?

Barnacle SEO was originally brought up by Will Scot in 2008. Under Barnacle SEO you are prioritizing the success of other websites rather than optimizing your own website to improve the visibility. These websites are ranked in higher positions because of the competitive keywords which is rather challenging for you to achieve. On the other hand, Classic SEO involves optimizing your own website for certain keywords and phrases with the aim to rank high on search engine result pages. 

Barnacle SEO is itself a kind of SEO strategy that is put into practice to rank for highly competitive keywords when there is intense competition. This is an incredibly convenient option rather than having a hard time doing deeper keyword research like in classic SEO strategy.

Now that you have understood what is barnacle SEO, let us take a dig into the ways to implement the strategy.  

Different Barnacle SEO Techniques:

Make Use Of Google My Business Profile

Google My Business Profile plays a great role in SEO strategy. Claim for Google my business profile and in case you don’t have one, create one. Update all the necessary information such as profile info, address, opening hours, and profile pic. Motivate your customers to leave a review and take the time to respond to them. 

Review Marketing

There are numerous review sites – Get started by making a company profile in any one of them that is relevant to your industry. Identify the review sites that match your brand and robust a profile and fill up all the information. Ask your previous customers to do a review on your product or brand. This will help in getting your reviewers to take seriously your online presence. Some of the review sites include:

  • Google My Business
  • TripAdvisor
  • Facebook
  • Yelp
  • Amazon
  • Angie’s List
  • Foursquare

If you are one in the software market there are review sites including G2 Crowd, GetApp, Capterra, Trustpilot, and SoftwareAdvice. 

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is about getting backlinks and website visitors who are highly interested to purchase. Go for the affiliate program that is very easy to join and eventually, it will become a revenue source for you. When you link from a higher authority site to your site, they will piggyback the authority of the larger site to increase the ranking for the target keyword. 

Guest Blogging

Guest Blogging is one of the most popular Barnacle SEO strategies.  Doing guest blogging will help you in link building and you can also work with websites that won’t give you ‘DoFollow’ links from a barnacle point of view. 

If you are doing a guest blog for a very big website that has the potential to get your content more visitors and shares, a ‘do-follow’ link is not necessary to leverage the authority. When you doing guest blogging you also need to make sure to present  quality content or hire a skilled guest blogger to get in touch with the people behind the website

Also Read: What is google E-E-A-T & Why it’s Important in SEO?

Take Part in Roundup Posts

Roundups involve featuring short pieces of information from industry experts which are shared around social media platforms by the readers as well as participants. It’s a win both ways. You might be wondering what’s in it for you. If the publishing website has a top authority and a great possibility to rank in search engine result pages, you can attach your content to it. You need to find topics that match your business with high search volumes, and thereafter make a way to the roundup posts. 

Content Syndication

Content syndication involves the process of republishing web-based content by a third party and this includes articles, blog posts, infographics videos, etc. This is a great way in which the third party gets the chance to publish free and relevant content while the person who creates the content gets more exposure and backlinks which further leads o improved organic traffic. This way you can invest your time to come up with quality content and need not required to reformat your content. 

Target High-Rank Directory Sites

Barnacle SEO is all about targeting high-authority websites and how these websites will help you to achieve growth. You need to look out for a website that has a major domain authority and that matches your website. You can find the top authority website at the top of search engine result pages (SERP).  Categorize the result and take the initiative to collaborate with them. If it is a directory website, you can simply request them to have you and get your business listed on their website. On the other hand, if it is a website like Moz you can go ahead and request them to give you an opportunity to post your content on their website. 

Focus On Profit Potential Keywords

The major risk when it comes to Barnacle SEO is when the top-authority website that you attached to changes its URL or removes your link. In such cases, your hard-earned rank will disappear. It is therefore necessary to build a strategy on profit potential keywords. This way by focusing on highly competitive keywords you can stand ahead in the game and also you are not heavily depending on any website. 

Social Media Platforms 

Social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, etc are a great way to boost your brand authority and also to build a large network of potential customers. The more you put effort into social media platforms, the better benefits you get out of it. But how to do it? Here are some of the tips to improve social engagement:

  • Responding to the most engaging posts.
  • Like or upvote these posts.
  • Don’t spam but there are many opportunities to mention your brand indirectly. 
  • Motivate others to discuss.
  • Discussions in the most popular groups and threads.
  • Create quality original content for Quora, Linkedin, or Reddit. 


Barnacle SEO is an amazing strategy to get more exposure and backlinks which in turn helps you to rank in SERP. Especially if you are a small business or start-up considering going for Barnacle SEO rather than classic SEO which makes it really challenging or impossible for you to stay in the game. Having said that, Barnacle SEO does take time. You need to invest your time to find a suitable website that matches your content even then, there is no guarantee as it would work or not. Thus, give yourself a thorough understanding of Barnacle SEO, its advantages, and disadvantages before investing your effort in Barnacle SEO.

Hello, I’m Farhan Srambiyam, I am a Microsoft and Google Certified Digital Marketing Strategist and an SEO Expert in Kerala. The extensive experience I possess with commitment and hard work has indeed made a mark on my career journey.

I greatly helped several companies and businesses get the most out of the digital space. Need to catch up on anything related to Marketing? All you have to do is schedule a call. or connect me on WhatsApp: +917902330203

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Farhan Srambiyan

Farhan Srambiyan

Farhan Srambiyan is a SEO Expert with a wealth of experience in the industry. He is currently working as a SEO Head at Acodez, a leading digital marketing and web development company.

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