The Basics of Backlinks
The Basics of Backlinks
If you’re ever involved in any sort of search engine optimization plan, you’ll probably hear the term “backlinks” thrown around. While you may not understand all the strategic discussion surrounding this mention of backlinks, it can easily become apparent that these things called backlinks are pretty important.
So, what even are backlinks and why is it that they are so important?
Let’s break backlinks down in the most easy-to-understand way.
What are Backlinks and Why Do You Need Them?
You should have, if you’re doing it right, links on your website that guide visitors to other areas of your website (internal links) as well as links that direct them to a different website altogether. Other websites, if you’re doing it right, should also have links back to your site. These outside links are, essentially, what are known as backlinks.
When it comes to marketing though, the meaning of backlinks can go much deeper than this.
Defining Backlinks in Marketing
Having links pointing people to your website from elsewhere on the internet is always a good sign. These backlinks are an essential component of a strong digital marketing strategy.
They are not just another access point for more site visitors to make it onto the page. Although this is a really good point behind having plenty of these links out on the web pointing towards you, it is not the only reason you want to make sure to have backlinks.
They play a much more important role than that. When it comes to SEO, plenty of quality backlinks are absolutely essential.
The Importance of Backlinks
Backlinks are the boost that every website needs to compete and succeed in the digital marketplace. Why? Because they are one of the number one factors that Google and other search engines use for ranking purposes.
There are basically two types of backlinks: dofollow and nofollow. Each type has a different role to play in the search engine algorithm.
Dofollow Backlinks are directly used by Google to factor into the ranking of your webpage.
Nofollow Backlinks are designated to be ignored by Google. These links may not directly play into your SEO, but they are still a link getting people onto your site.
Every backlink has an important role to play in a strong SEO strategy. Ignoring the importance of backlinks is one of the biggest mistakes that you can make for your marketing.
To understand why, let’s take a look at the various advantages of a quality backlink portfolio:
1. Allows More Opportunities for People to Click Onto Your Website
No matter what else it can do for you, a link to your website is a link you can get use out of. Even those nofollow links, while not followed by the search engines, can still be followed by actual internet users.
Each backlink out there is a chance to attract someone’s attention. Each click on your backlink is a boost to the site traffic numbers. Each new website visitor that comes in through a backlink is an opportunity to earn a new customer.
Therefore, every single backlink that you get has the potential to help you achieve what you’re after for your website. Of course, for the SEO benefits, a dofollow backlink should still be the priority.
2. Gives Your Site Greater Credibility in the Eyes of Search Engines
This is what a high-quality dofollow backlink does for you and your brand’s SEO strategy.
Each backlink is a vote of confidence from that linking website, telling Google that they trust your website enough to give that link. Search engines specifically look out for these backlinks to know the credibility of websites. If you’ve got the right links in the right places, this is a positive sign to the search engines.
This credibility in the eyes of the search engines can be exactly what you need to rise up the search engine results page (SERP). It can be just what you need to achieve all your SEO goals.
3. Crucial to SEO Success
More than any other reason, success with search engine optimization is the reason you need quality backlinks. You simply cannot have success with SEO without earning backlinks.
For this reason, a link-building strategy is a part of the plan for most pursuing better SEO. If you have an important goal in mind for your business, you’ll want to get on top of building up these backlinks as well.
When you have high-quality backlinks, as long as you’ve got everything else done right, your SEO strategy can be a success.
How Backlinks Help with SEO Rankings
Way back in the beginning of search engine development, backlinks earned a role of very high importance. In an effort to prevent those practicing blackhat SEO through keyword stuffing from being the ones rewarded, a new metric for the algorithm had to be discovered. With PageRank, links, not just page content, mattered for Google to determine rankings.
With backlinks as a ranking factor, search engine results grew to much more closely resemble what internet users wanted to see. What this meant for marketers is apparent:
For high SEO rankings, backlinks are essential.
The way it works is fairly simple. Each link to your website is an additional signal towards your credibility. The more backlinks you have, the better you look to Google and the other search engines and, therefore, the higher they’ll rank you.
Of course, not all backlinks are created equal and some are worth more than others. A quality backlink is one that comes from a trusted website with a higher domain authority of its own.
By being associated, through backlinks, with more high-quality websites, some of their authority can become yours, helping out your SEO in a big way.
In addition, seeing your brand mentioned or even just your site linked to on a website they trust is a good sign for real, human internet users. Just as backlinks will improve your site’s credibility in the eyes of the search engines, they can also have a direct effect on potential site visitors that encounter your links.
As more site traffic arrives, through whichever boost the backlinks provide, the better off your website is. In the end, backlinks will provide your SEO with exactly what it needs.
But the Link Building Has to Be Done Right
To really see the impressive results that you want for your SEO though, you can’t just sit back in expectation of all the backlinks that will surely come pouring in. You also don’t want to set out on a link building process that doesn’t provide you the best results.
It’s important to remember that not every backlink provides a high value. Some, in fact, may do your SEO harm if they appear to be spam.
When going after those high-quality backlinks, you have to be careful.
The process of link-building is not easy, but shortcuts cannot be taken. Getting it right means putting in the time and effort required. You will have to work to earn those backlinks you’re after.
To start, you need something that can actually be linked to. If you want to have any hope of receiving a natural backlink, this means high-quality content will be necessary. Whether you already have the perfect pieces to bring in the links or you’ve got to get started writing, no further progress in earning links can be accomplished until you’ve got this first step done.
As you then begin the process of building up those backlinks, keep in mind the need to balance quantity with quality. Just one single high-quality link is probably not going to get you very far, Yet you also don’t just want to get as many links as possible, because quality does matter.
It’s a tricky strategy to figure out, but if you can get backlinks right, it is all worth it.
Making Backlinks Work for Your SEO Goals
Get your high-quality content out there and get those backlinks coming in. Combined with all the other elements of a solid SEO strategy, nothing else could be better for your marketing.
If you can get it done right, you’re sure to reach your goals.
Still having trouble getting the hang of backlinks? Get in touch with the marketing experts of Regex SEO to have all your backlink questions cleared up.