What Is Backlinks in SEO Example and Definition
Simply put, backlinks are links pointing from one website to a page on another website. Backlinks can also be known as inbound links and are an important part of SEO. For example, if we were to mention a website such as Concept Lighting and link to them as we did, they would gain a backlink and vice versa.
Why are backlinks important?
Having a decent amount of backlinks pointing to your site is important as search engines will start to view your websites as being more relevant than others in their results page for search queries.
This is because having another website link to a page on your site indicates that your page must provide some type of value and your website starts to be seen as more authoritative.
Gaining quality backlinks
Search engines aim to provide users with the most relevant content that will provide searchers with the most value.
If search engines start to notice high authority websites linking to pages on your website, they will begin to deem those pages on your site as being high value and rank them better on their results page compared to other pages with no backlinks.
Gaining backlinks from high authority websites is important because search engines won’t count a link from just any random website towards PageRank.
Search engines look at the patterns of the link (whether its coming from a website that’s somewhat relevant to your site), link authority (relevancy and age of the referring link), and the age of the domain which a backlink is coming from.
All those factors determine whether or not a backlink can be considered quality. The higher the quality of a backlink, the more it’ll be counted towards PageRank.
Types of links
Search engines have gotten significantly smarter over the past few years and don’t count just any random link going to your website towards PageRank.
To determine whether or not a link is qualified to help boost your websites page rank, search engines first look at what type of link it is.
The two main types of links are no-follow links and follow-links.
A no-follow link is a link that does not count as a point in the page’s favor, does not boost PageRank, and doesn’t help a page’s placement in the SERPs.
Some examples of no-follow links can include…
- Links found in blog comments
- Links found in forums
- Paid Links
- Anything involving what Google calls “untrusted content”
This no-follow attribute was implemented to Google in 2005 to ensure people weren’t cheating their way through the search engines.
It would go against Googles mission to provide searchers with the most relevant content if people were spamming forums with links to their own website to build backlinks and climbing the results page for irrelevant terms.
However, just because a no-follow link doesn’t directly provide value in terms of boosting your page rankings, they’re still important to help drive organic traffic to your website and increase your brands exposure.
Follow links are links that count as points, boosting the page rank of the linked-to sites, helping them go higher in the SERPs as a result.
The process of creating follow links (backlinks) is known as link building and is an essential part to any SEO strategy.
What is Link Building?
Link building has always been and is still a top ranking factor for Google.
In the field of SEO, link building describes actions directed toward increasing the number and quality of backlinks to a webpage.
The main emphasis of link building, however, is to provide a means of attracting website visitors that would otherwise never have known you existed.
It has been said that for search engines, links are the streets between web pages. For internet searchers, those links are the roadmap that provides a slight detour to a site that may contain precisely what they are looking for.
Linking one site to another, therefore, provides web searchers opportunities to journey beyond their original intended destination.
Does Link Building Matter?
Links from authoritative sites are like an endorsement, with two thumbs up, and a standing ovation that shout to search engines that your site’s domain is to be valued above others for its trustworthiness and authority.
The basic structure of link building describes the action taken to increase the number of quality backlinks to your webpage.
When considering the behavior of how a search engine travels the web through a course of inbound links, it is easy to see how important it is to create a network of qualitative and authoritative links.
Link Building Best Practices
Obtaining quality backlinks is all about creating quality content. The best way to build links is to earn them.
But how is it possible to earn links from sites who know little about you? For starters, you must create the best content in your industry.
This content must be shared on your social media channels and if your content is any good it will be read and shared.
If someone uses any part of your content, they will link back to your content as the source, giving you a backlink.
Vary the length and type of content you create. Longer content, however, increases a user’s time on a page, which is another ranking factor for Google.
Guest blogging is not dead, as Matt Cutts, director of engineering for the US Digital Service, once said.
However, he did clarify later that (in his opinion) guest blogging was dead as far as obtaining backlinks went.
However, guest blogging is another way to demonstrate authority in your niche.
How do you go about finding sites relevant to your niche? Great question. The basic idea is to Google your keyword (or longtail keyword) combined with some form of “contributing writer,” “submit a blog post,” or “guest blogger.”
This search should offer you several sites to choose from. Your task now is to determine which sites are authoritative and which ones are looking for free content. For more information on the value of guest blogging, click here.
Broken Link Building
Broken links can create a dysfunctional website in a hurry.
Many website owners are unaware of any broken links, so you will be doing them a favor if you can point it out and by doing so offer a similar page that you just happen to have available!
You will need to download software from Check My Links.
This software will allow users to look at various websites related to their industry.
Scan those sites for broken links, contact the webmaster to inform them of a broken link situation, suggest a few links as substitutes and be sure to include a link to your website.
Be certain your content is the best content provided.
It would be wise to scan for broken links for any website you open during the course of your day.
Ahrefs is another site that will scan for broken links.
YouTube is no longer just a place to stream your favorite music or videos.
It’s an advertising mecca. Not in an outbound, shove it down people’s throat type of advertising, but a tool for attracting visitors to not only to Like and Subscribe but an invitation to visit a relevant page on your website.
If you own a small business and don’t have a YouTube account your business is missing out.
YouTube is owned by Google and is a search engine all in itself.
That is one reason why YouTube videos show up in Google searches, still yet another avenue by which you could be found through a backlink.
In order for that to happen, ensure a link is placed in the video description.
If appropriate, mention your website address in the video. If it is a whiteboard presentation, write it somewhere on the board where viewers can easily find it.
Make your website and your business easy to find.
Conclusion: What Is Backlinks in SEO Example and Definition
Link building is one of the most dominant considerations in a search engine algorithm when ranking any page found on the internet.
The more backlinks that point to your remarkable content, the more influential the sources of those links, the more authoritative your site will appear to search engines.
But more important than that is the effect it has on those who are searching for what you offer. Higher search engine rankings will increase organic traffic.
Could you wait for links to come to you naturally? If your content is so amazing and you have all the time in the world, fine. In the meantime, it is to your advantage to actively pursue link building.
A word of caution though: Avoid posting links to your site in such places as forums, blog comment sections, and any number of social media platforms. If you do, you could very well be banned by the site’s webmaster for spamming and you could be penalized for breaking Google’s Webmaster guidelines.
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