Of course the #1 white hat link building technique is link bait - having such amazing content, features or tools that other sites want to link back to it. But these sites must find you first, which usually involves some other source of links.
So what are the most widely accepted in Google's eyes, of attaining white hat links - or links that will in no way jeopardize your site's rankings. These are the links that likely cost time and money, but are still worth it.
1. Guest blogging - spending time and effort on writing compelling enough content, that a blogger will want to use it on their site, and in return place a link back to you.
2. Article submission - creating great articles about particular subjects that news sites, and similar, will want to publish - that may or may not also reference back to your site.
3. Link requesting - pro-actively finding sites that are relevant to yours, or who's visitors may benefit from seeing yours, and persuading the site own to link to your site, or a particular page on your site.
Anything else - I am not talking about the latest manipulating tactics, but evergreen tactics that will offer mutual benefit.
I believe Press Releases are also a good way including Social Media marketing, Youtube, Yahoo Answers and more.
Article marketing is really frowned upon by Google. I've read several threads when the webmasters got the "Unnatural links warning" messages and Google guys showed them "Article Marketing" links as being unnatural.
Extremely weired and Google is indeed moving backwards. Google need to get friendly with webmasters. They can penalize websites they want but they must get straighter with their talks. Clearly tell the actual problems to webmasters and have them fix the problems which are in their control.
They are asking webmasters to remove links then why Google put so much weight on backlinks first? It is their fault as they simply can't access the right and wrong backlinks with their algos and now they are blaming the webmasters for gaming them. Really Strange!
Clearly tell the actual problems to webmasters and have them fix the problems which are in their control.
That would be nice especially the mom and pop content sites that really provide the useful content. Or the ones that clearly do not deserve to be in prison with Panda or Penguin. That's what made the web so wonderful and not sites with zillions of pages or empty big brand sites.
It's also amazing how many SEO firms use paid links as their link building methods. I guess this is something that Google really struggle with identifying in their algo. Does anyone actually recommend this?