What are backlinks?

What are backlinks? The ultimate guide to understanding backlinks

What are backlinks?

What are backlinks?

A backlink is a link from a page on website A to a page on website B. In short, it allows you to navigate from one page to another easily. It is also known as “inbound link” or “incoming link.”

Backlinks play an essential factor in search engine optimization(SEO) which we will discuss in another article.

How do backlinks work?

The way Backlinks work is based on something known as Vote of Confidence and Link Juice. If someone links to one of your webpages, then the link juice from their website will be transferred to your webpage and this will give Google an indication which will lead your blog post or web page to get a better position in the SERP.

Where to place a backlink?

Backlinks can be placed anywhere on your website, but the best place to have them is inside your content, that is, your blog article.

Search engine bots will use these links to crawl the web and your entire website. Thus, helping it to understand your website’s content.

Types of backlinks:

There are basically two different types of backlinks from an SEO point of view:

Dofollow backlinks

If there is a backlink on website A & linking to website B, website A will pass on the authority to website B. This contributes directly to your site’s domain and page authorities and passes on website strength from A to B.

Nofollow backlinks

It does not pass any site strength; however, it is still valuable as it helps visitors find your website.

Another classification for backlinks is that of internal and external links. As the name suggests, links from one website to another are internal, and links within a single website are all internal links. This, we will discuss in another article.

Importance of backlinks:

Backlinks are essential from an SEO point of view since google and other search engines believe them to be an important indicator of “authenticity” and “digital vote of confidence.” The more quality backlinks you have, the more credible your website will appear to search engines. Above all, it is often said that they are the most crucial aspect of excellent SEO ratings.

So now your website is seen as having high-quality content, backlinks also help with getting higher rankings on Google. The more total referencing domains a site has, the higher the site ranking.

The higher you rank on Google, the more people will see your content and click on your website.

Another benefit of having quality backlinks is that it helps to build your brand. For example, if a high-quality, trendy blog links to your website, you are also making an authority.

So, the more backlinks you have on your webpage, the more credible your content will be for search engines. Thus, helping your page rank on the first page of Search Engine Results Pages (SERP).

Building quality backlinks is an essential part of off-page SEO and will be discussed in another blog article.

How are backlinks earned?

Building backlink is one of the important parts of off-page SEO rather it the most important factor to build your domain authority.

There are three primary ways to earn backlinks.

Natural links

They are created organically without any need for you to ask others to provide a backlink for your website. And one of the easiest ways to create backlinks naturally is to consistently create high-quality content. It is a long-term game that you need to master with your consistent efforts.

Manual links

As the name suggests, these are created manually with your active involvement in them. For example, if you reach out to another website owner and request a backlink then it will be counted as a manual link. Guest posting is also an example of manual link-building activity.

Self-created links

These links are created when you or your site manager manually adds a link on forums, comment sections, social media groups, etc. While creating backlinks in this way might seem to be the easiest way, many of these tactics tend towards black-hat SEO that may affect your search engine reputation. These are typically labeled by the “No Follow” tag.

Are all backlinks equally valuable?

While having a large set of backlink profile is desirable, not all backlinks are as valuable as others. Some are inherently more advantageous to earn – others should be avoided whenever possible. Understanding the influencers of backlink value is crucial for link building and evaluating the health of your backlink profile.

Factors used to determine backlinks value:

There are many factors that are used to determine a backlink value. Here, we are going to discuss a few important ones.

Do-Follow vs. No-Follow Backlinks

Site owners can specify if the individual link passes link equity or not. A nofollow link does not pass link equity – also called “link juice” – to the linking domain, while a follow link does. While followed backlinks are much more desirable, nofollow links from high-quality websites can still be beneficial to enhance your brand.

Authority of linking domain

Backlinks from high authority domains provide more link juice than backlinks from low-quality or spammy websites.

Link Relevancy

Backlinks from relevant industry/niche domains pass more link juice than from irrelevant industries. Therefore, try to build your link profile from relevant industries only.

Link Location

Where a link appears on a page is also an important factor. The link embedded inside a relevant blog post is more valuable & passes more link equity than linked somewhere in the footer or sidebar area. Also, Links at the beginning of content may carry slightly more weight than links placed at the end of the content.

Number of Outbound Links on Page

A link on a page with hundreds of external links passes less PageRank than a page with a handful of outbound links.

Total number of anchors

Website anchor tags are invisible positioning markers that direct users to precise areas of your website. Anchors make it smooth and fast to navigate to a certain section of the page.

Certain anchor text is deemed SEO-friendly, passing more link equity than others. Succinct, relevant, and non-generic text are preferable.

For example, linking to this blog post with the anchor “importance of backlinks for SEO” is preferable than linking to with the generic text “click here.”

Presence of keywords in the anchor

Including the targeted keyword in the anchor tag is a good practice but has minimal influence on domain rankings — except with very popular keywords.

How many backlinks per day is a safe option?

A very common question that we often receive is how many backlinks per day is safe for us to earn?

We all wish to build our backlink profile as quickly as possible so that you can rank on SERP. However, we are all aware that adding too many backlinks too quickly could get us in some trouble.

Unfortunately, the answer to these questions is not a straightforward one. (like many other things in SEO)

Many SEO experts claim a certain number of backlinks per day as a safe number. For example 10 backlinks or 15 backlinks per day. However, there is no concrete study or google’s claim backing these numbers.

If you have just started learning SEO, you cannot expect to receive 30 & 40 backlinks per day.

Also, Google considers a large spike in the number of backlinks as unnatural.

Therefore, my best advice here to you will be to focus on building quality content first and then naturally and slowly build your backlink profile over time.

Advantages/Benefits of having the backlinks:

Here are a few advantages of having backlinks.

Helps You Build Your Brand:

Backlinks serve two main purposes:

The primary purpose is to help you navigate from one page to another acting as a link between the two
Creating brand awareness

We are already aware of the first one, let us discuss the second point.

How do backlinks help create brand awareness?

Well, having your brand name as an anchor tag is a recommendation that we always make to our clients. It allows viewers to help them associate you with that particular industry or niche.

Having such an association in your relevant niche builds your brand. Anytime they see anything in that field, your brand name will pop up in their mind.

Anchor texts on your website should be diverse. Do not have the same anchor text repeating itself. Instead, you can opt for mixing up keyword anchors with branded anchors and others to create this diversity.

Being “forced” to use your brand name as an anchor is a way of simply getting your name out there. Even if a user doesn’t click the first time seeing your brand name, the more that user sees your name, the more that user is going to be compelled to click it. And once they click, they are led to the biggest branding opportunity you have: your site.

There’s no better representation of your brand than your website, and link building is a valuable way to get people to look at your brand in all of its glory.

Helps You Build Authority and Trust

Getting backlinks from authority sites is a great way to have some authority rub off on your site. Not only is the link viewed as a vote of confidence by search engines, more importantly, but it’s also viewed as a vote of confidence by users.

When more websites link back to you, they position your site as an authority in that particular niche, industry, service, or subject.

Also, the more endorsements you receive from authoritative websites, the higher ranking your website will have in the search engines. At the same time, more people are going to trust your website & recognize your brand.

Remember that Google uses backlinks as one factor to learn what your website is all about. So, the more backlinks you get, the easier it will be for Google to know more about your business

Here, we are not talking about a numerical form of authority like domain authority but like a know-it-all kind of authority.

Relationship Building

If you’re building links without building relationships, you’re doing it wrong.
I can’t emphasize enough how much easier link building is when you have relationships within your niche to rely upon.

Link building can help you develop new relationships. When visitors find your link on another website or directory, they might click on the link to see who is behind the great content or service.

Some of the visitors might even sign up for your newsletter. Some of them may Like your Facebook page or subscribe to your RSS feed. So, you can see that one link might bring you many new loyal customers or visitors.

Did you ever think that you can gain followers outside the realm of social media? It happens to me frequently. I attract a few new followers every time I get a backlink, and the majority of the time the followers are people I’ve never talked to on any of the social media platforms.

Relationship building leads to visibility, no matter where you want to be seen.

Referral Traffic

Backlinks also contribute greatly to boosting referral traffic. If a visitor gets to your website through a backlink, then Google Analytics tracks that click as a referral visit to your website. In essence, referral traffic is more targeted and relevant and results in a lower bounce rate than other types of traffic.

This might help you to grow faster if you have backlinks from a high authority blog in that niche as you will get traffic from their blog.

Faster indexing

Search Engine spiders are intelligent and smart, they know their work and crawl all day and night long while you sleep.

Search engine bots will discover new web pages by following backlinks from existing web pages. Only when they’ve discovered your site can they crawl your site effectively.

It will be more difficult for search engine bots to find your site if you do not have any backlinks. Especially for a new website, it is important to get backlinks as they help in the faster discovery and indexing of your site.

Improve Organic Ranking

If your content is getting links from other sites, that content will naturally start to rank higher in the search results. If it isn’t, then you need to get proactive and build them.

Your goal should be to create links to individual posts/pages along with those leading to your homepage.

Disadvantages of having the backlinks:

Here are a few disadvantages of having backlinks.

Low-Quality Links

Getting backlinks from spammy websites or websites with a high spam score can backfire your website as it affects your rankings badly. It might seem to be a daunting task but you need to be extra careful while building your backlinks as quality backlinks are more important than quantity.

Effect on On-Page SEO

Having spammy backlinks on a blog post can really hurt the On-Page SEO of a page. It will be difficult for you to rank your website on search engines.

Penalty from Google

The biggest disadvantage of making a large number of Backlinks is that it can lead you to a penalty from Google. This mostly happens when you get backlinks from a website with a high spam score or any website that is violating Google’s guidelines or if you have too many backlinks in a short span of time.

 

Conclusion:

Initially, building backlinks can be a tedious and time-consuming process. But once you get started and build enough backlinks, You will be rewarded with a constant flow of traffic that can be monetized later.

Also, more backlinks will improve your domain authority; search engines will rank your website higher on the SERP bringing in more traffic.

So start today, slowly and patiently build your backlink profile and you will reap benefits with time.

Remember that things that give long-term value & happiness take time. So be patient, write every day, share that you write, and if they like it then you would naturally get a backlink.

Do let us know in that comment section what are your own ways to generate high-quality backlinks and how much time did you take to get your first 100 backlinks.

Stay tuned for more content.

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