One of the golden rules of search engine optimization is that having a great website does not guarantee high ranking results. You might have an impressive website. The content of your website might be fresh and original. You might have sprinkled keywords in the most appropriate proportion without inviting the danger of over-optimization. Yet, when it comes to search engines, the ranking results disappoint you. Are you wondering what is the secret force behind this?
That secret force has got a name: backlinks.
Backinks Are The Backbone
Those who attempt to learn the basics of SEO must have come across this term called backlinks. In search engine optimization two factors are considered essential for high ranking: keywords and backlinks. If keywords constitute the flesh of your website, backlinks are the backbone. With the new Panda and Penguin updates from Google, they have achieved a position in SEO which is hard to dismiss.
In this post and in a number of posts that follow we will deal exclusively with the topic of backlinks. We will be looking at
- What are backlinks
- Why are they important in search engine optimization
- Relevant and irrelevant backlinks
- How do search engines determine the quality of your backlinks
- How to get backlinks for your website
- Reciprocal linking
- Unhealthy link building practices
- The dos and don’ts of link building
- What is backlink bombing
- How to do a link building campaign
- Tools that help in building and tracing backlinks
What Are Backlinks?
Backlinks, also known as inbound links or incoming links, are links which are on other websites that direct towards your website. According to normal web rules they are important because they help in navigating through webpages. In other words it is the classic method through which a surfer navigate from one page to another page.
But in SEO backlinks are seen as having supreme importance because they indicate how popular and important your website or webpage is. Most of the search engines use them to determine the ranking of a webpage.
Backlinks And Search Engines
Search engines, especially Google, takes into consideration the number of quality backlinks your website has listing out the results pages for a search query. The word ‘quality’ does matter here. It is not enough if you just get some backlinks for your website/page. On the other hand it is mandatory that you get quality backlinks which are relevant to the content of your webpage.
How To Determine The Quality Of A Backlink?
To put it simply, the backlinks of your website should come from other websites which are related to your site. The quality of your links is measured in terms of the relevance of their content. If the links on your site are of unrelated content, they are considered less relevant and hence as having less quality. The more relevance they have, the greater their quality.
Let us take an example. Suppose you have a webpage on organic food products. If you receive a backlink from the website of a nutritionist, it is considered relevant. But a link you receive from the website of a fashion boutique will be rejected by search engines as having no relevance.
Building backlinks is not an easy task; nor can it be done overnight. The only principle that applies here is slow and steady wins the race. To know more about the rules and tools of link building read our post on The Dos and Don’ts of Backlink Building.