Backlinks: a crucial part to any blog. However, is there a correct way to link a piece of content to get more views?

(Approximately a 7 minute read)

Let’s get straight into today’s blog.

So, what are backlinks?

Backlinks, which can also be referred to as ‘inbound’ or ‘external’ links, are links from other websites to your website. Search engines, such as Google, even view backlinks as ‘votes’ for your website. These ‘votes’ increase site ranking and content, which will increase your visibility on Google. 

Link from external site
As the backlink is taken from another site, it is then redirected towards your site, giving you a wider spread of marketing and publicity across multiple websites sectors and industries.

Why do backlinks affect your ranking with search engines?

As previously mentioned, backlinks are votes from other sites. Each of these votes tell a search engine, such as Google, that this content is valuable, credible and of use to people. The more votes that you carry, the higher your site ranking will be with Google and other search engines. 

Using links as a voting system is nothing new. In fact, backlinks formed the foundation of Google’s original algorithm, also known as ‘PageRank’ and you can see a reconstructed abstract about ‘PageRank’ below.

Search Engine
Here you can see PageRank in theory with backlinks being proficient through Google.

Thousands of changes have been made to Google’s algorithm since, and backlinks have remained a key ranking signal. Even Google have confirmed that links remain one of their three most important figures for websites and their ranking within the search engine. However, how can I use backlinks to boost my ranking higher and higher to the top? 

How do you build backlinks for your website? 

Backlinks are not equal. There are factors which can make a backlink work perfect and also, factors which can kill them dead. It’s all about building quality backlinks for your website.
A single backlink can prove to be more powerful than 10 low quality backlinks. It’s all about ‘quality over quantity’. 

Websites with authority and trust

This is a no brainer. If you get back linked from a website such as Salesforce then your backlink is going to be very credible. However, if you were to get a backlink from your neighbour Phil’s website, then it is going to be a little less credible. Google feels the exact same way about this as again, we are looking at “quality not quantity”. This is known as ‘Domain Authority’. Typically, with this theory, the more trust and authority that your website has then, the backlink is going to achieve more quality.

backlink flow
Here, just like the previous example we are looking at domain authority. You have been back-linked by an organisation such as Amazon for example classing this is as a domain authority. Google will take this and treat you like the more important sibling.
search engine example
From Google’s viewpoint.

As that link comes from a trusted website like Salesforce, Google puts a lot of boost on it. Are these links hard to get? 100% but, they are worth every little boost you get from it.

Targeted keywords 

You want your backlinks to have keywords within them and the link’s anchor text. For example, if I were writing a blog post on the conventions of copywriting then, the best backlink for this would be to include the blog title. In a sentence, you want to use target keywords as studies show there is a correlation between keyword-rich anchor text and higher rankings for that keyword.

Targer keywords
Here we can see the anchor link from the HTML side of things. The link is being sourced to which then is being displayed on the blog.

Like the infographic shows above, having that anchor link and putting that combination with your target keyword is the perfect mix and combination. With a quick warning however; you don’t want to go overboard with your anchor text as Google has a filter in their algorithm called ‘Penguin’.  Google’s Penguin filters out websites that use shady link building strategies to gain a better ranking within the Google Search engine. It will hammer sites that use an excessive amount of back linking. It will also target links with ‘exact match’ anchor text as this can come across as spam to Google. Don’t go out of your way forcing backlinks towards yourself, you’ll get punished. 

Interested in getting the maximum amount of people to view your website? Look at our blog ‘7 ways to increase traffic towards your website

Topically and industry related 

This is a massive one. Google “wants” to see that the backlinks you are receiving are from other websites in your niche, sector or industry. Imagine, for example, we have just received a backlink from Mautic, a partner of ours. Google is going to put much more weight on content that is CRM and marketing cloud related than a topic such as cooking for example. It just has no relevance at all.

With this in mind focus on backlinks from organisations and companies that are within your industry. This will increase your rating the best.

Some links NEED to be avoided 

Google, as well as other search engines, will ignore any backlinks with the ‘nofollow’ tag attached to it. It disrupts their algorithms, the links are not counted as part of the algorithm. 

An example within HTML of a nofollow backlink with the tag attached.

Many of the links on the web are “No follow” links as the tag is not valuable to begin with. For example, these link types follow this pattern:

  • Blog comments 
  • Press release
  • Paid advertisements
  • Profile links

These links are not helping in anyway towards the concept of SEO. As nothing is gained in terms of ranking and your position within Search engines. it’s not a big loss.

Linkable content and turning that content into backlinks 

If you want people to link to your website then you are going to need content that is worth linking to. More importantly, content that people are going to want to link to. In most cases, the content on your website is going to be a natural piece that is on your home page or a blog article. 

Google uses about 200 ranking signals. These are all factors on how your website is ranked on the search engines. To build all them backlinks, you need to have amazing content on your site. This is critical in the performance of your backlinks and how well they are going to perform. 

Link roundups

Link roundups are blog posts. Their have the sole purpose of being linked to quality content which is then, backlinked. This content tends to already exist on your website but, this method puts multiple links in to a single post.

Link roundups
A prime example of how creating content can be purposely done for managing backlinks and utilising them.

So, what are link roundups? Link roundups are daily, weekly or monthly blog posts that link to outstanding content such as related blog content. For example, blogs that relate to your industry and content. Try and find link roundups that are in your niche sector or industry as you don’t want to start recommending blogs for surfing when your niche is Marketing Cloud. 

In summary, this has been a brief guide to backlinks and how they can affect not only content on your website but also, your SEO and rating within search engines.