As a website owner, you may have come across the term “backlinks” in the context of search engine optimization (SEO).
In simple terms, a backlink is a link from one website to another.
In SEO, backlinks are an important factor in determining the ranking of a website in search engine results pages (SERPs).
In this article, we will explore what backlinks are, why they are important, and provide examples of backlinks in SEO.
Table of Contents
What are Backlinks?
Backlinks, also known as “inbound links” or “incoming links,” are links from one website to another.
When one website links to another, it is seen as a vote of confidence or endorsement.
The more quality backlinks a website has, the more likely it is to rank higher in search engine results pages.
Why Are Backlinks Important?
Backlinks are important for several reasons, including:
1. Search Engine Optimization
Search engines like Google use backlinks to determine the quality and relevance of a website.
Websites with a large number of high-quality backlinks are seen as more authoritative and trustworthy by search engines.
This, in turn, can help to improve the website’s ranking in search engine results pages.
2. Referral Traffic
Backlinks also bring referral traffic to a website. When a user clicks on a link from another website and lands on a website, it is called referral traffic.
Referral traffic can help to increase a website’s visibility and can lead to new customers or clients.
3. Brand Building
Backlinks can also help to build brand awareness and credibility.
When a website is mentioned or linked to other reputable websites, it can help to establish the website as a trustworthy and authoritative source in its industry.
Examples of Backlinks in SEO
Now that we have a basic understanding of what backlinks are and why they are important, let’s take a look at some examples of backlinks in SEO.
1. Guest Blogging
Guest blogging is a common technique used by website owners to get backlinks.
Guest blogging involves writing a blog post for another website and including a link back to your website in the author bio or within the content of the blog post.
This helps to increase the number of backlinks to your website and can help to improve your website’s ranking in search engine results pages.
2. Broken Link Building
Broken link building is a technique that involves finding broken links on other websites and offering to replace them with a link to your own website.
This is a win-win situation for both parties as the website owner gets a broken link fixed, and the other website gets a new backlink.
3. Resource Page Link Building
Resource page link building involves finding resource pages on other websites and offering to add your website to the list of resources.
Resource pages are pages on a website that list helpful links and resources related to a particular topic.
Getting your website listed on a resource page can help to increase the number of backlinks to your website and can help to improve your website’s ranking in search engine results pages.
Types of Backlinks
In addition to understanding what backlinks are and why they are important for SEO, it’s also important to understand the different types of backlinks that exist.
In this section, we will explore the different types of backlinks that website owners can acquire.
1. Follow Links
Follow links, also known as “dofollow links,” are links that pass “link equity” from one website to another.
When a website links to another website with a follow link, it is telling search engines that the linked website is trustworthy and relevant.
Follow links can help to improve a website’s ranking in search engine results pages.
2. Nofollow Links
Nofollow links, as the name suggests, do not pass link equity from one website to another.
When a website links to another website with a nofollow link, it is telling search engines that the linked website is not necessarily trustworthy or relevant.
Nofollow links were introduced to combat spam and prevent website owners from abusing follow links for SEO purposes.
3. Sponsored or Paid Links
Sponsored or paid links are links that are acquired through payment. When a website owner pays another website for a link, it is considered a sponsored or paid link.
Google and other search engines require that sponsored or paid links be identified with a “rel=sponsored” attribute to ensure transparency.
4. UGC Links
UGC stands for “user-generated content.” UGC links are links that are created by users, such as in comments, forums, or social media posts.
UGC links are often nofollow links as they are not necessarily trustworthy or relevant.
5. Editorially Placed Links
Editorially placed links are links that are placed by editors or writers within content, such as in blog posts or articles.
These links can be follow or nofollow links, and their value depends on the relevance and authority of the linking website.
6. Link Schemes
Link schemes are manipulative techniques used to acquire backlinks for SEO purposes. Examples of link schemes include buying or selling links, exchanging links, and participating in link networks.
Google and other search engines penalize websites that engage in link schemes as they violate the search engines’ guidelines.
What Types of Backlinks are Valuable?
While all backlinks can potentially help a website’s SEO, some backlinks are more valuable than others.
In this section, we will explore the traits that make a backlink valuable for SEO purposes.
Trait #1: They Come From Trusted, Authoritative Websites
Backlinks that come from trusted and authoritative websites are highly valuable. When a website with high authority links to another website, it is telling search engines that the linked website is also trustworthy and authoritative.
Websites with high authority are those that are well-established, have a strong reputation, and are considered experts in their field.
Trait #2: They Include Your Target Keyword In The Link’s Anchor Text
Backlinks that include the target keyword in the link’s anchor text are also highly valuable.
When a website links to another website using the target keyword in the anchor text, it is telling search engines that the linked website is relevant to that keyword.
However, it’s important to note that overusing exact match anchor text can lead to a penalty from search engines, so it’s important to use anchor text variation.
Trait #3: The Site (and Page) Linking to You Is Topically Related To Your Site
Backlinks that come from websites and pages that are topically related to your site are also highly valuable.
When a website links to another website that is topically related, it is telling search engines that the linked website is relevant and trustworthy within that topic or industry.
For example, a backlink from a technology blog to a technology website would be highly valuable.
Trait #4: The Link Is a “Dofollow” Link
Dofollow links, as mentioned earlier, pass link equity from one website to another. Therefore, do follow links are more valuable than nofollow links.
Dofollow links help to improve a website’s ranking in search engine results pages.
Trait #5: The Link Is From a Domain That Hasn’t Linked to You Before
Backlinks from new domains are also valuable. When a website receives a backlink from a domain that has not been linked to it before, it shows search engines that the website is gaining popularity and attracting new audiences.
However, it’s important to note that the quality of the domain is more important than whether or not it has linked before.
What Makes a Good Backlink?
In addition to the traits that make a backlink valuable, there are several other factors that make a good backlink. In this section, we will explore these factors in more detail.
One of the most important factors that make a good backlink is relevance. A backlink from a website that is topically related to your own website is more valuable than a backlink from a website that is unrelated.
For example, a backlink from a food blog to a cooking website would be more valuable than a backlink from a fashion blog to a cooking website.
The authority of the website linking to your website is also important.
Backlinks from websites with high authority, such as established news organizations or government websites, are more valuable than backlinks from websites with low authority, such as personal blogs or low-quality directories.
The amount of traffic that a website receives is also a factor that makes a good backlink.
Backlinks from websites that receive high traffic can potentially send more visitors to your website and increase its visibility.
The placement of the backlink on the linking website is also important.
Backlinks that are placed within the main content of a webpage, such as within a blog post, are more valuable than backlinks that are placed in the footer or sidebar of a webpage.
Followed vs. Nofollowed
As mentioned earlier, dofollow links pass link equity from one website to another, making them more valuable than nofollow links.
However, a mix of both dofollow and nofollow links can appear more natural to search engines and prevent the website from receiving a penalty for overusing dofollow links.
The anchor text used in the backlink is also important. Anchor text that includes the target keyword is more valuable than anchor text that is generic or unrelated to the content of the linked website.
However, it’s important to use a variety of anchor text to avoid overusing exact match anchor text and potentially receiving a penalty from search engines.
How to Get Backlinks to Your Site
Now that we’ve discussed what makes a good backlink, let’s explore some effective strategies for acquiring backlinks to your website.
Create Great Content
One of the best ways to attract backlinks is to create high-quality content that provides value to your target audience.
This could include blog posts, infographics, videos, or any other form of content that is informative, entertaining, or educational.
By creating content that people find useful or engaging, you increase the likelihood that other websites will link to it.
Use HARO to Respond to Journalists’ Requests
HARO (Help a Reporter Out) is a platform that connects journalists with sources for their stories.
By signing up for HARO and responding to relevant queries, you can potentially earn backlinks from reputable media outlets.
To be successful on HARO, it’s important to provide thoughtful and insightful responses to journalists’ requests and to include a link back to your website when appropriate.
Write (Strategic) Guest Posts
Another effective strategy for acquiring backlinks is to write guest posts for other websites.
This involves writing a high-quality article for another website in your industry, with a link back to your own website included in the author bio or within the article itself.
To be successful with guest posting, it’s important to target websites that have high authority and traffic and to write content that is informative and engaging.
Publish Research and Pitch It to the Press
Publishing original research or data can also be an effective way to earn backlinks.
By conducting research on a topic related to your industry and publishing the findings on your website, you can potentially attract attention from journalists and other media outlets.
To increase the likelihood of earning backlinks, it’s important to reach out to journalists and pitch the research as a potential story idea.
Analyze Your Competitors’ Backlink Profiles
Finally, it can be helpful to analyze your competitors’ backlink profiles to identify potential opportunities for acquiring backlinks.
By using a tool like Ahrefs or SEMrush, you can see which websites are linking to your competitors and attempt to earn similar links for your own website.
It’s important to note, however, that not all backlinks are created equal, and it’s important to prioritize high-quality, relevant links over low-quality, spammy links.
FAQs About What is Backlinks in SEO Example
Can you list 3 types of backlinks?
Three types of backlinks are:
- Natural backlinks
- Manual backlinks
- Self-created backlinks
What does a backlink look like?
A backlink is a hyperlink that directs users from one website to another. It usually appears as an underlined, clickable word or phrase within the content of a webpage.
What is a good backlink SEO?
A good backlink in SEO is one that comes from a high-authority website that is topically related to your own website, includes your target keyword in the anchor text, and is a “do follow” link.
How do I backlink my website?
You can backlink your website by creating high-quality, engaging content that people will want to share and link to, reaching out to other websites and asking for a link, or submitting your site to web directories or social bookmarking sites.
What is the difference between link and backlink?
A link is a clickable element that directs users to another webpage, while a backlink is a link that directs users from another webpage to your webpage.
How do I create a backlink in SEO?
To create a backlink in SEO, you can engage in link building activities such as creating high-quality content, reaching out to other websites and asking for a link, or submitting your site to web directories or social bookmarking sites.
How do I know if my website has backlinks?
You can use backlink checker tools such as Ahrefs, Moz, or SEMrush to find out if your website has backlinks.
Simply enter your website’s URL and the tool will display a list of websites that link to your site.
How do I find backlinks to keywords?
You can use keyword research tools such as Ahrefs, Moz, or SEMrush to find backlinks to keywords.
Simply enter your target keyword and the tool will display a list of websites that link to pages containing that keyword.
What makes a bad backlink?
A bad backlink is one that comes from a low-quality or spammy website, has irrelevant or misleading anchor text, or is a “nofollow” link.
These types of backlinks can hurt your SEO and even result in a penalty from Google.
Which websites have most backlinks?
The websites with the most backlinks are typically high-authority websites such as Wikipedia, YouTube, and Facebook.
However, it’s important to note that quantity does not always equal quality when it comes to backlinks.
Can I rank without backlinks?
While backlinks are an important ranking factor, it is possible to rank without them if your website has high-quality content, strong on-page SEO, and is optimized for user experience.
However, it can be more difficult to rank without backlinks, especially for competitive keywords.
Final Thoughts About What is Backlinks in SEO Example
Backlinks are an essential aspect of SEO as they help search engines understand the relevance and authority of a website.
High-quality backlinks from authoritative and relevant sources can improve a website’s search engine rankings, traffic, and visibility.
To get valuable backlinks, one should create great content, leverage public relations opportunities, analyze competitor backlinks, and use link-building tools.
It’s crucial to avoid low-quality backlinks that can hurt a website’s search engine rankings and reputation.
In summary, building a solid backlink profile is an ongoing process that requires patience, persistence, and the creation of high-quality content that naturally attracts links.