How to Get High Authority EDU Backlinks: 11 Proven Ways!

Pankil Shah
by Pankil Shah
Updated On: October 20, 2023
How to Get High Authority EDU Backlinks: 11 Proven Ways!

The subject of .edu backlinks often puzzles many Search Engine Optimizers (SEOs). Is there any distinction between .edu backlinks and those coming from .com or .io domains? The answer isn’t straightforward, because it depends on the authority of the .edu site linking back to your website. For instance, if a low authority .edu site provides you with a backlink, the benefit might be insignificant. However, the landscape significantly changes when a high authority .edu website is involved.

.edu domains generally have a solid reputation due to their longevity, sometimes spanning several decades, resulting in high domain authority. All these factors contribute to their overall trustworthiness in the eyes of search engines. Consequently, any backlinks from these trusted domains also elevate the trustworthiness and ranking of the linked websites.

Screenshot of a Reddit user zstoney13's comment regarding the value of .edu posts
.edu extensions tend to carry authority

In the above image, you can see that edu websites are involved in creating research papers, journals, and other superior quality content creating activities that make them more authoritative, resulting in increasing any website’s ranking that is linked to high authority edu websites.

Now that you know the importance of high authority edu backlinks, you might be wondering how to get edu backlinks. In this article, I will explain the top 11 proven ways of getting high-quality edu backlinks. So let’s get started:

Why Are EDU Backlinks So Valuable in SEO?

Firstly, EDU backlinks hail from trusted academic sites. In the SEO world, these backlinks are appreciated because they come from authoritative academic platforms. Google highly esteems them for their expertise and credible content, thereby upgrading the trustworthiness of your site.

Together with some proactive SEO tips, they can effectively align with Google’s EEAT (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness) metrics, enhancing your ranking. Additionally, these sites are usually filled with high-quality content that is regarded as authentic and trustworthy. This, in a way, gives them a competitive edge over newly-launched blogs or websites that can be set up over a weekend.

Key Benefits of Building EDU Backlinks

EDU backlinks come with a plethora of benefits. Harnessing the power of a strong, authoritative web presence, EDU backlinks can significantly enhance your website’s credibility and boost its visibility on key search engines. They serve as a magnet for increased traffic, thereby catalyzing potential conversions. Above all, these high-quality links amplify your SEO efforts, demonstrating the value of using SEO tools for link building. With all their benefits, EDU backlinks not only earn prominence on a high-authority web page but are also worth your time and investment!

Effective Backlink Strategy to Secure High Authority EDU Backlinks

1. Offering Scholarships/Internships

A scholarship link-building strategy is a well-established method for obtaining coveted .edu backlinks. Essentially, the procedure involves offering a scholarship, notifying relevant academic bodies, and subsequently obtaining a backlink to your landing page from these institutions. Marketers have lauded this strategy for its effectiveness over the years.

However, acquiring .edu backlinks in this manner has become more challenging in recent times, largely due to schools becoming more aware of the backlinking intention. Hence, certain institutions have grown stricter in granting these backlinks. It’s imperative, then, to carefully outline your scholarships or internships, bearing in mind the aim should never be to provide offerings you cannot fulfill. Deceptive practices can undermine your organization’s reputation and potentially jeopardize future .edu backlink prospects.

It’s advised that you make a clear decision on the type of scholarship or internship to offer and design a transparent mechanism for selecting winners. Traditionally, scholarship applications involve industry-oriented essay writing. However, this could be replaced or complemented with alternative submission formats such as videos or small projects depending on your preference.

Eligibility criteria are an important aspect of your scholarship or internship offer. Here is an example of the eligibility requirements for a scholarship:

Screenshot of eligibility criteria for a scholarship
Provide scholarship information on your website to attract backlinks

A Side Note: This method mostly worked best in the past when universities and educational institutes were not familiar with backlinking advantages. If this method works for you, that’s great. But Let me tell you, I have researched various educational websites and have noted that nowadays, educational websites only mention their institute’s financial aid. For outside aid, they mention scholarship websites or other sources for outside scholarships. You can better understand this from the following example:

Screenshot of Yale's external outside aid
Screenshot of Yale’s external outside aid

2. Collaborating with College Newspapers

Another underutilized approach is partnering with college newspapers. These could be seen as powerful PR sites within the educational community. College journalists, often publishing their articles on the college website or college blog, are always seeking engaging content for articles. Pitch them an idea relevant to your industry, peppering it with quotes, facts, and stats. When published, you get credited with a rich .edu backlink – a recognized SEO tool due to its high domain authority and trustworthiness that can help increase PageRank for the linked site. Remember, it’s not just a clever trick but a contribution to the educational value. This offers high-quality traffic, especially if you’re targeting students.

Here’s how to make the most of this approach:

1. Targeted Student Audience: College newspapers are a direct route to reaching students, a vital demographic for many businesses. Crafting content tailored to their interests and needs can yield high-quality traffic.

2. Crafting a Winning Pitch: Identify relevant college newspapers and pitch them with engaging content ideas, sprinkled with quotes, facts, and statistics. Align your pitch with the newspaper’s educational mission, emphasizing the value it offers to students.

3. Establish Credibility: Position yourself or your business as an expert in your industry to enhance your pitch’s appeal and build trust with readers.

4. Measuring Success: Monitor the impact of your partnership by tracking backlinks, improvements in PageRank, and changes in website traffic. This data will show the value of your collaboration with college newspapers.

By partnering with college newspapers, you contribute not only to your SEO strategy but also to the educational community. This mutually beneficial relationship can help you achieve long-term success in reaching a student audience.

3. Creating Relevant and Unique Resource Pages

Resource page link-building is a top-notch strategy. A study by Backlinko revealed that the second most favored strategy for SEO professionals when it came to link building, was creating links from resource pages.

Infograph of poll results for different building tactics
Resource pages and links list pages are popular strategies for SEO professionals

Image Source

Create a resource page filled with unique insights from your keyword research and relevant data not widely covered. This can include research, industry terms, or FAQs. These pages can serve as a valuable digital asset, like a case study or white paper, allowing other sites to link to your resource page. This move will enable you to garner quality backlinks and organic traffic. Thus, making your resource page niche-specific using the aid of keyword research is a must-try. It’s a high-reward-low-risk link-building hack!

4. Offering Discounts to Students and Faculty

Harness the power of discounts! Your services may be attractive to students and faculty members. Offer them discounts and in return, request a mention on the college’s discount page. As part of your outreach strategy, find their email address and notify them that they were mentioned in your blog. It’s a great way to tap into their budget-conscious mindset, earn a .edu backlink simultaneously, and promote your email address. Remember, your product/service must be relevant to their needs for this to work! If you’re ready to speed up the process, consider getting in touch with our outreach specialists.

These resource pages effectively function as invaluable digital assets, akin to case studies or white papers, and have the added advantage of serving as link magnets for other websites. By encouraging other sites to link to your resource page, you can secure high-quality backlinks, thereby enhancing your website’s authority and driving organic traffic.

To fully harness the potential of this approach, customizing your resource page to be niche-specific through the guidance of keyword research is crucial. Doing so can lead to substantial rewards while minimizing associated risks, making it a highly promising link-building strategy.

Expanding on the concept of resource page link building, it’s important to stress that quality should always be a top priority. While creating your resource page, strive to provide genuine value to your audience by delivering unique insights, data, or information that can’t be easily found elsewhere.

5. Establishing a Career Page

Establishing a career page has a two-fold impact. Not only does it attract potential candidates, but akin to quality education websites, it serves as an excellent linkable asset. Colleges often repost valuable links like this from your business on their college website or college blog, which helps to draw those valuable .edu backlinks. Take a page from the high domain authority education websites: make sure your career page showcases your work culture, job openings, and sought-after qualifications, to connect with the right candidates. Engaging in this manner can lead to additional exposure on university domains, thus augmenting your SEO ranking. Needless to say, it’s an easy and practical method to gain .edu links!

6. Conducting Interviews of Prominent Faculty/Staff

Conducting interviews with faculty members is another surefire strategy. Often, these faculty members maintain a blog on their .edu domains. An interview with them on a trending topic can lead to a backlink. For instance, engaging them in an insightful conversation around mentorship or discussing your comprehensive data analysis report could yield a valuable backlink for you. Remember, relevance is key! For instance, interviewing a sustainable engineering professor who mentors young talents can provide a backlink for a sustainable energy consulting site. 


Let’s say you run a sustainable energy consulting website, and you’re eager to secure backlinks from authoritative sources. You’ve identified a prominent sustainable engineering professor, Dr. Emily Green, who maintains a blog on her university’s .edu domain. Dr. Green is known for her expertise in mentoring young talents in the field of sustainable engineering.

You decide to reach out to Dr. Green with a proposal for an interview on your website. Given her specialization and experience, you propose discussing the topic of “Fostering Innovation Through Mentorship in Sustainable Energy.” The interview would delve into the role of mentorship in advancing sustainable energy solutions, the challenges young talents face, and the strategies she employs to guide them effectively.

Dr. Green, recognizing the relevance of the topic to her expertise, agrees to the interview. You conduct a comprehensive and insightful conversation, highlighting her valuable insights, experiences, and advice. The interview is then published on your sustainable energy consulting website.

As a result, Dr. Green is pleased with the quality of the interview and the prominence it gives her in her field. She decides to link to the interview on her own blog, within a relevant article she has written on the subject of mentorship and sustainable engineering. This link, hosted on her authoritative .edu domain, points back to your sustainable energy consulting site.

The backlink from Dr. Green’s blog serves as a valuable endorsement of your content, enhancing your site’s credibility and visibility. It not only contributes to your SEO efforts but also exposes your website to a broader audience interested in sustainable energy and mentorship. Additionally, it’s a testament to the power of relevance in link-building, as the topic of the interview aligns perfectly with Dr. Green’s expertise.

7. Creating a High-Quality Guest Post for EDU Websites

Guest posting is an age-old, reliable method. Contribute a high-quality, engaging post to academic blogs, many of which are categorized under some of the best PR sites. These EDU blogs often allow authors to link back to their sites, resulting in a potent backlink. Achieve this by ensuring your post is relevant, unique, profoundly informative, and adheres to its stringent guidelines to gain approval. 

Check this list of the best academic blogs of 2023.

List of the top 10 academic blogs
Provide researchers with a reliable and credible space to share their knowledge

While this strategy might require significant time and resources, the high-quality traffic garnered, particularly from the student demographic, proves it fruitful over time. Using tools like Outranking for a more integrated link builder experience can also help streamline this process. 

Quick Read 📖 Learn how to perfect your keyword strategy in our Ultimate SEO Keyword Clustering & Grouping Guide with Tools

8. Building from Broken Backlinks

Yes, even broken links carry potential! Websites often have outdated or broken links—which can be spotted easily as they’re often highlighted in yellow. These broken links negatively impact their SEO. Utilize SEO tools like Ahrefs Site Explorer or Open Site Explorer to discover these links specifically on .edu sites. When you find these links, check if you have a suitable replacement link on your website. By offering your own content as a link replacement, you not only gain a valuable backlink but also help the .edu website enhance its user experience. It’s not merely a directory listing; it’s a strategic move towards improved SEO for both parties.

Screenshot of Ahrefs' internal linking report
It’s a win-win!

9. Leveraging Local Link Building Opportunities

Connecting locally holds tremendous value. Undertake outreach to local universities and colleges, and propose your business as a local resource. Having a web presence on their local resources web page by securing your brand’s backlink can drive considerable local traffic. This significantly enhances your business. Therefore, don’t forget to tap into the potential of local link-building and the influence a strong web presence can bring! 

Here is how you can leverage local link-building opportunities in educational institutes:

1. Identify Local Educational Partners:

Start by identifying local colleges, universities, and educational organizations in your area. Look for institutions that align with your business values or industry.

2. Research Existing Opportunities:

Explore their websites to find existing opportunities for partnerships or sponsorships. Some institutions may have dedicated pages for donors, sponsors, or local resources.

3. Connect with the Right Contacts:

Reach out to the appropriate department or contact person within the institution. This could be the public relations department, development office, or a relevant faculty member.

4. Offer Scholarships or Grants:

Consider creating scholarship programs or grants that align with your business objectives. Many educational institutions are eager to work with local businesses that support their students’ education.

5. Sponsor Events or Programs:

Explore opportunities to sponsor events, workshops, or educational programs at the institution. This can lead to brand exposure and potential backlinks.

6. Create Valuable Content:

Develop high-quality content that is valuable to the educational community. This could be in the form of educational resources, guides, or articles related to your industry. Offer this content to the institution for their website, with a backlink to your site.

7. Collaborate on Research Projects:

If your business aligns with the academic field, consider collaborating on research projects with faculty or students. Such collaborations can result in mentions and backlinks in academic papers and on the institution’s website.

8. Attend Career Fairs and Workshops:

Participate in career fairs, workshops, or guest lectures at the educational institution. This can help establish your brand’s presence and create opportunities for links.

9. Write Guest Posts for the Institution’s Blog:

Propose writing guest posts for the institution’s blog, especially if you have expertise in a relevant field. Guest posts usually include author bios with backlinks to your website.

10. Engage in Social Responsibility:

 Showcase your commitment to social responsibility by supporting initiatives that benefit the local community through the institution. This not only builds your brand’s image but can lead to backlinks from the institution’s website.

11. Actively Participate in Alumni Associations:

If you have alumni from the institution working in your company, encourage them to engage with their alma mater and look for opportunities to collaborate or provide support.

12. Monitor and Maintain Relationships:

Building relationships with educational institutions is an ongoing process. Regularly monitor your collaborations and maintain a positive and supportive presence.

13. Utilize Local SEO Techniques:

 Implement local SEO techniques to ensure your business is highly visible in local search results. This can drive more local traffic and strengthen your relationship with educational institutions.

Screenshot of a local backlink opportunity
Keeping it local can have many benefits

10. Making Donations to Schools

Making donations is another effective method. Most educational websites, particularly those with .EDU domains like college websites or colleges’ official blogs, announce donations in press releases, often linking back to the donors. These links are gold mines for earning high-authority backlinks that can boost your SEO. Plus, you support the school — a valuable endeavor that enhances your brand’s social image. An example of this can be found in a donor’s press release with a backlink 


University XYZ Press Release


Date: [Date]

University XYZ Receives Generous Donation from ABC Industries

[City, State] – University XYZ is pleased to announce a significant donation from ABC Industries, a leading local business. The generous contribution from ABC Industries will support our scholarship program, enabling deserving students to pursue their higher education goals. We are deeply grateful for their commitment to our community and the future of education.

[University XYZ’s President/Spokesperson’s Name] stated, “We are immensely appreciative of ABC Industries for their dedication to our institution. This donation will have a lasting impact on our students, empowering them to achieve their academic dreams.”

To learn more about ABC Industries and their commitment to supporting education, please visit their website here.

For more information, please contact:

[University XYZ Media Contact Information]

[ABC Industries Contact Information]

11. Exploiting Broken Link Building Opportunities

Exploiting broken links can be quite beneficial. Sometimes, educational sites contain broken links. Recognizing these, you can approach the respective webmasters and point out the flaws. As a fix, you can offer your relevant content as a link replacement. This strategy ensures they rectify their issue while rewarding you with a priceless .edu backlink. That’s the beauty of effective link replacement—broken links can actually become significant opportunities! You might be surprised at broken links highlighted in yellow in some site explorer tools. See the proof in this screenshot of a tool highlighting broken links.

How to Find and Approach EDU Backlink Opportunities

Discovering.EDU Sites for Backlink Opportunities

Discovering .edu sites requires smart online research, and this step is crucial in the SEO world. Starting with a web search on search engines like Google and Bing, utilizing relevant keywords is the first step. To make this process more efficient, try using SEO tools like Semrush or Ahrefs’ site explorer to find more specific results. Employ advanced search modifiers like “” to further narrow down your findings to only .edu domains. For geographically tailored results, use phrases like “ AND [YourState].” It’s important to note that there is no magical formula that can guarantee top results, but the secret lies in uncovering niche-relevant opportunities! So, keep your focus on that whilst using these helpful tools. 

Approaching Educational Institutions for Backlinks

When you approach educational institutions, be professional yet friendly. A great SEO tip is to effectively utilize an outreach strategy and find their email address. Notify them professionally, yet collegially, detailing the value their users would gain from your link. Personalize your emails, ensuring they do not sound overly promotional. Keep your outreach proposal concise and cover the key points efficiently. Remember, it’s not only about proposing a link, but demonstrating the value-add to their site!

Screenshot of an email request for backlinks
Don’t hesitate to reach out and show your worth!

Things to Be Cautious About While Building EDU Backlinks

Avoiding Link Schemes

Always avoid link schemes. Google cracks down on these manipulative tactics such as making use of spam forums or high-pressure SEO techniques. So steer clear of any deceptive practices like buying links from non-reputable platforms or PR pages, which can harm your website’s ranking. EDU backlinks, especially nofollow ones, are crucial, but they need to be earned authentically. For example, if your company has a registered address, you might contact relevant academic institutions requesting inclusion in their local resources list. Remember, link schemes might seem suggestive and easy to get, but they carry substantial risks, including perceptions as spam! You can refer to Google’s guidelines about such link schemes by clicking here.

Not Relying Solely on EDU Backlinks

While EDU backlinks are valuable, don’t exclusively rely on them. Use a good SEO tool such as Ahrefs or Semrush to diversify your backlink profile, not just focus on domain extensions like .edu. Search engines appreciate a diverse backlink profile, so aim for an assortment of high-quality backlinks from varied domains. Also, make sure to frequently monitor and evaluate your backlink strategy; utilizing an SEO tool to find potentially broken links is an efficient way to do this. Updates to your backlink strategy, in line with the latest SEO trends, can often significantly improve your site’s performance. Remember, placing all your eggs in one basket, especially when it comes to the matter of SEO backlinks, isn’t a healthy practice!

Screenshot of backlinks for a website
ensure the quality of your .edu backlinks

Can you Reach Higher Rankings with EDU Backlinks?

Absolutely, you can! High-quality EDU backlinks, often found on authority websites, are highly valued in the SEO world. They can significantly elevate your website’s authority, their effect typically resulting in an increase in organic traffic, better positioning on SERPs, and improved visibility. However, while EDU backlinks can rapidly propel your site’s ranking on SERPs, it’s vital to balance them with a diverse link bouquet! Acknowledge that the SEO world constantly evolves, with regular Google algorithm updates potentially influencing your site’s rankings. 

FAQs about EDU Backlinks

What Makes .edu Backlinks So Popular Among SEO Professionals?

EDU backlinks are popular among SEO pros due to their high authority. According to the latest SEO tips, Google views .edu sites as authority websites, imbuing these backlinks with credibility and informative value that considerably amplifies the SEO score of these links. Furthermore, these backlinks are instrumental in augmenting a website’s trustworthiness and ranking on SERPs. Their potent impact on several SEO metrics, as revealed in Google Algorithm Updates, makes them a hot commodity for all SEO professionals.

How many backlinks do I need to rank?

The number of backlinks needed to rank can depend on many factors, one of the most significant being your target keyword’s difficulty. Using a fantastic SEO tool like Outranking can help immensely in identifying your keyword’s intent. For instance, a keyword with a difficulty of 20 may require approximately 20 backlinks. However, a highly competitive keyword with a difficulty of 70 can demand upwards of 140 backlinks. It can also be an excellent link builder, helping find and replace broken links at scale with similar content. So, integrating a robust SEO tool into your strategy is crucial for efficient backlinking.

Are EDU backlinks still important?

Yes, EDU backlinks are still important for SEO. Despite varying opinions, the general consensus in the SEO world upholds that these backlinks are valuable due to their high domain authority and trustworthiness. Known as authority websites, EDU backlinks can significantly boost your website’s credibility, following one of the important SEO tips for improving your search engine rankings. Therefore, securing high-quality EDU backlinks should be a vital part of your SEO strategy.

Final Takeaway 

While each of the strategies mentioned in this article offers a unique approach, it’s important to remember that building high authority .EDU backlinks are not an overnight endeavor. Like any SEO venture, it also requires dedication, persistence, and the cultivation of genuine relationships with educational institutions. By implementing these proven methods, you can strengthen your website’s authority, enhance your online presence, and ultimately achieve better search engine rankings. As you embark on your journey to acquire .EDU backlinks, keep in mind that the key to success lies in providing value to the educational community and being a reliable source of information and support.

Class is in session! 🏫

Perfect your backlinking with Outranking’s SEO solutions today 🎓