First things first, let’s address the elephant in the room: backlinks are not dead. While Google may have made countless changes to its algorithms to improve overall user experience in the past decade, high-quality backlinks to your website still remain as one of the most relevant ranking signals.
Because of this, it’s important to have a strong link-building campaign to improve ranking and to increase the conversion opportunities for your brand.
Not sure where to start? Then this blog is for you! Today, we’re going to talk about backlinks and why they’re still relevant in 2021. Let’s get started!
Backlinks are simply links from one website to a page on another website. They’re also called inbound links, incoming links, or one-way links and they form connections through external websites.
Major search engines like Google, Yahoo!, and Bing view backlinks as a vote of confidence for a specific webpage. It helps them determine the authority and relevance of your site on the topic or keyword you rank.
More backlinks to your page mean more external websites are endorsing your content. Because of this, search engines will interpret your content as valuable, credible, and useful for the end-user resulting in a higher search rank.
So with more backlinks, your page has a higher chance of appearing at the top of search engine result pages (SERPs).
An important thing to remember about backlinks though is that quality will always win over quality. Not all backlinks are created equal. Some are inherently more beneficial for your domain authority and SEO rankings.
So what makes a good quality backlink? Here are some of the characteristics of reliable, trustworthy, and foolproof backlinks:
A backlink coming to your website should be closely connected or appropriate for your website or page. If an external website or page has relevance for a location or niche and links to you, that relevance is then passed on to your site.
This is an indicator of the ranking power a link carries over. A backlink coming from a website that has established a substantial degree of trust with search engines is a good thing to have because their authority gets spilled over to your webpage. For example, if your content gets featured on a website like CNN, then your page will get more brownie points from search engines. An external website’s authority is determined by its age, quality, and size.
A high-quality backlink also comes from an external page with high traffic. This is because this can generate referral traffic which is always good for conversion.
The location of a backlink also plays a crucial role in determining its quality. This is because a link that is prominently placed on the main content area of an external page will most likely catch the attention of people. Using font and color that makes it stand out and using arresting text also helps.
This increases the chances of it getting clicked which then passes along a fair amount of authority or PageRank, according to Google’s Reasonable Surfer patent.
The clickable words that form a backlink are called anchor text. The more relevant it is to your website, the more powerful the backlink is so it should contain the keyword you’re trying to rank for. Relevant anchor text boosts relevance signals to search engines while improving user experience.
Backlinks that contain the rel=”nofollow” attribute provide little to no value for your SEO strategy. This is because the presence of this tag tells search engines not to pass authority from the linking page to the destination page. So you won’t improve your page rank.
Backlinks remain a valuable part of every SEO strategy because, despite the many updates in its algorithms, Google uses ranking factors that are related to link signals. This includes total referring domains, total backlinks, total referring IPS, and total follow-backlinks.
When used right backlinks help improve a website’s:
As we’ve stated above, the more backlinks you get, the more votes of confidence you get from external sites. Search engines use this as a basis for determining the relevance and authority of your page which feeds into your position in SERPS.
Getting backlinks from popular and authoritative websites is a great way to improve the discoverability of your web pages. This is because search engines are designed to find new content by revisiting pages to check for new links.
Consequently, they also revisit popular pages more often. So if you have a backlink in these pages, then you’re golden because A link from a trusted source will help your content to be indexed by Google faster. This way, your ages will also rank much faster.
Referral traffic is traffic that comes from an external website. It is important because it sends potential buyers to your website who already trust the recommendations of the website they clicked the link from.
Moreover, search engines consider backlinks from trusted websites as positive ranking factors. This, again, improves your search rankings.
Particularly if you own a small business owner, getting links from authority sites and trusted sources can help you greatly. You get a huge credibility boost when you get links from industry leaders while also boosting your ranking in SERPs.
As we’ve established, backlinks are important for boosting your page rank. But how do you obtain these links? Below are seven link building strategies you can use to get high-quality links:
This refers to writing high-quality articles for external websites that backlink to yours. It’s one of the most widely-used link-building strategies that even small companies can use to strengthen their online presence.
It’s not only beneficial for the guest writer but also for the publishing website. As the former get referral traffic, the latter gets new content for their target audience.
Niche edit link building is a tactic in which a contextual link is added to an existing blog post or page on a website. Unlike guest posting, this does not involve writing new content. Rather, hyperlinks are placed in previously published content.
This link building technique involves finding a relevant piece of content with plenty of backlinks, creating a piece of superior content, and then asking those who’ve linked to the original content to link to yours instead.
Skyscraper content is anchored on the tendency of humans to reach for the best. You can do this to existing content by genuinely adding value. You can do this by:
Editorial backlinks are editorial mentions that refer to your site through a link placed within relevant and high-quality content. You can acquire this by having your own content cited as a source of specific information in articles or infographics, by having a company representative interviewed, o by having your site included in a roundup about a relevant topic.
Evergreen content is crucial for editorial backlinking. So you need to have articles that successfully position you as a thought leader in your industry.
You can leverage business listing sites, social media, industry directories, and even review sites to build backlinks. Create and published a digital profile for your brand that links back to your website and posts it on these platforms.
This way, search engines will consider your website as well-established, hence it is worthy of getting better search rankings.
Webinar backlinks are links that lead back to a presentation you’ve made. Don’t forget to record your live webinar and keep it on your website. This way, external websites can link back to this resource.
Nowadays, blogs and social media platforms feature a comment section where people can discuss that particular piece of content. It’s also a great place to get backlinks to your website.
When you find a blog article, a social media post, or a Youtube video that’s relevant to your business, you can contribute to the conversation and fill in your name, email address, and website address. This generates a link to your website that other users can click and search engines can use for ranking.
Backlinks remain one of the most powerful SEO tools out there even in 2021. Along with great content, it’s a surefire way to improve not only your search rankings but also to boost your conversions.
By understanding how backlinks work and knowing the right link-building strategies to use, you can start to reap big benefits soon enough.
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