Updated July 31, 2020
Building quality backlinks is one of the most effective ways to improve your website’s visibility on major search engines. Backlinks are links from one website to another. This is important because if another site is sharing your site, search engines recognize your content as valuable resulting in a higher ranking site.
However, not all backlinks are created equal and if you want to rank higher in the SERPs your focus should be on creating a quality backlink. It is often difficult to determine the difference between a good and a bad link. The Google Penguin Update which launched in 2012, started to punish web pages that had been spamming Google. They created a list of specific quality guidelines and when followed correctly should ensure that you are not creating harmful or spammy links. There have, however, been several updates to the Google algorithm that have occurred since then. We’ll get into that a little later.
A quality backlink profile can have a positive impact on your search visibility, while a sketchy list of referrers can be detrimental. So, how do you ensure that you have a quality backlink? The following tips include the best way to produce high-quality backlinks.
3 Ways To Tell If Your Backlinks Are High Quality
Backlinks do not need to have each one of these tips to be considered high quality – two of them will do. And, if you can get all three (or any more attributes that influence a links value), rest assured the link to your website is definitely one worth keeping.
Linking to a Related Source
Search engines consider many factors when determining the relevance of your site. Google places a higher value on your website if you link to another related site. Most importantly, determining the value of the content surrounding the anchor tag. Google and Bing pay close attention to the relevancy between a webpage and its links. Backlinks from relevant sources are also reliable as they provide an opportunity to target your potential visitors.
From A Trusted Source
Trusted backlinks are ones that come from a trusted source i.e. “an official website, a government website, a school website or, a website that has been around for a long time.” You want your sources to be from a reputable source. In the SEO world, this is known as Domain Authority. In other words, if a site has a high authority it can pass that authority onto your website because Google trusts that site.
Search Engines can easily differentiate spammy websites versus trusted ones. They can tell when a website has been built specifically for paid backlinking, therefore, when determining high-quality backlinks versus low-quality ones, links from well known legitimate websites are ones to keep.
There are many proper techniques that you can use to get quality backlinks to your site. Having interesting, well-written content is often the first step to organically build these links, as users will be inclined to share or link to your website. Backlinks have become one of the main building blocks of SEO, therefore, ensuring that your backlinks are good quality, in combination with many other SEO techniques is a great way to drive relevant traffic to your businesses’ website.
Included Keywords in Anchor Text
Anchor texts are clickable words that link one site to another. You want websites that are linking to your site to be using your target keywords. A recent study shows that there is a relationship between the use of keywords in anchor texts and higher rankings. But it’s easy to get carried away with keywords in anchor texts.
As previously mentioned, Google developed a filter, Google Penguin, which focuses on sites that have built backlinks with anchor text that matches the exact same keywords. But there have been several updates to the algorithm since and there’s a massive list that Backolink compiled to help you out with the best practices.
3 Ways to Build Quality Backlinks
Producing quality content is the first step to natural link building. If you write great content, people will be more inclined to talk about it and share it. Spend time and effort on quality content as this will naturally encourage people to link to you. Keep in mind that even one quality post can gain many links to your website.
Relationships with Relevant Sites
Building genuine relationships with relevant businesses can increase links to your website. Sharing relevant virtual events, linking to someone else’s content, and chatting via social media are all ways to build online relationships. Zoom chats, Twitter conversations, and being genuine in answering people’s online questions also present the opportunity to link build. Don’t forget: use already established industry relationships to ask for links and return the favour — just ensure that the content aligns.
Guest blogging to build backlinks is tricky and can be viewed as spammy (if abused). However, if done correctly (see above), it is a great way to build links to your website. In order to ensure that you are guest blogging to properly improve your rankings and increase traffic to your site, we recommend:
- Guest blog with engaging content which encourages people to share
- Guest blog for relevant and reputable websites
- Guest blog links to other websites along with your own if the reader will benefit (add value!)
- Guest blog strategically to become a trusted online author.
If done honestly, guest blogging is a great way to build quality links to your website from trusted sites. Guest blogging also improves SEO, incoming traffic flow, and lead generation.
Social Networking Sites
Social networking sites are a great place to share your quality content and build backlinks. Websites such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook are some of the most visited sites in the world. Especially during a pandemic when people are spending a lot more time at home and are heavily relying on social networking sites to connect with their loved ones. This is the perfect place for you to position yourself in the eyes of your target audience. Brand recognition is an important part of link building and it is important to post strategically to get your content in front of the right people.
Developing a strong social presence suggests to Google that your content is useful and share-worthy. However, this is only the case if your comments, question, and answer responses and website links on these platforms add value to the readers. Consider Reddit and Quora, where the best answers are upvoted and shared.
Syndicating your content on websites like Medium, LinkedIn Articles, and Tumblr extends the reach of your content to new audiences while creating more links to your site.
Furthermore, many social networking sites allow you to add links to your website and any other websites in your bio. Although linking back to your site from social media sites can drive traffic and benefit users, they are not all necessarily beneficial to SEO because of the nofollow rule that is on most social networks. Although, they are still impactful and beneficial to have because the nofollow link still sends signals to Google.
Patience and Hardwork
When it comes to building quality backlinks, time and perseverance are key. Blanket emails to every website that accepts guest posts won’t get you very far. Adding value for the content producers you’re trying to connect with is not a one-and-done tactic. It takes patience.
Do keep in mind that Google, Bing, and other search engine algorithms are smart. Building quality backlinks the right way plays a big part in your search ranking, whether that be high or low. It is important to write engaging, value-added content, and consistently monitor the quality of your backlinks. This will help to give your website the upper hand in SERPs.