Bing recently urged SMBs to understand their target audience and create content that reaches them.

There’s no doubting that link building is a major element of generating a strong SEO standing. However, Bing’s senior product manager Duane Forrester recently said that any organization using search marketing needs to expand their focus to other critical factors of SEO, including content marketing.

Forrester explained that developing website content and using social media marketing to naturally generate links will help small businesses win search presence. However, fixating on linkbuilding for search marketing can handicap a company. ContentLEAD has long warned that practices, such as paid links have resulted in poor search rankings for SMBs on most major search engines.

“If all the time that was spent seeking linkbuilding shortcuts was invested into producing quality, engaging content, more websites would find success,” Forrester wrote in the Bing blog.

Forrester said that links should be the end result of a number of other SEO practices. Create high-quality content that garners attention from prospects and readers, and they’ll share it on their own. Moreover, putting links to site content on social campaigns will drive inbound links even further, while also improving the visibility of a site on different social platforms.

More than anything, Forrester’s comments urge small businesses to avoid viewing any one part of an SEO strategy as a silver bullet. A well-rounded web marketing strategy will help SMBs build their web presences and generate links organically.

It appears as though many companies have adopted this strategy, with even more set to use quality site content as an SEO driver moving forward. ContentLEAD recently highlighted data from the Association of National Advertisers that found 17 percent of companies not currently using content marketing will make the move in the next 12 months, building on the one in 10 that already invest in website content.