Link Building, or Building backlinks, for your website, is still a very important way of helping your website rank well in the search engine result pages (SERPS). As Google’s ranking algorithms have grown in complexity and ability, it’s true that the importance of the backlink is not the same as it once was.
However, in the eyes of Google, a backlink is still seen as a vote of confidence from a 3rd party in the target website’s relevance and authority on a given topic.
Whereas in the old days an abundance of backlinks to a website could almost guarantee it ranking well in the search engines, Google now has the ability to dissect and analyze that backlink, look at the relevance of the content surrounding the backlink, and that the relevance of the website that the backlink comes from and based upon its own calculations it will value that backlink accordingly.
What Is A Backlink?
A backlink quite simply is a hypertext link from one website to another website. You create the inbound link by using an HTML tag which will point the link to the target website and will also enclose the selected anchor text within the appropriate tag. The easiest way to explain this is to look at a simple example:
<a href="https://targetSite.com">Anchor Text</a>
What Is A Good Backlink?
In the good old days, Google would simply look at the anchor text and then credit the target site with the relevant backlink for that word or phrase. But as the backlink system became abused by enthusiastic SEOers (who me?!), Google realized that it had to take more factors into consideration and expanded its algorithms to look at the relevance and quality of the website the backlink was placed upon.
It also looked at the content surrounding the backlink for both quality and relevance and also started to take a step back and look at the overall pattern of the backlinks pointed at the target site.
It then started to recognize and punish unnatural activity. This is what defeated the old SEO tactic of “keyword stuffing”. It didn’t take Google long to work out that it was not a natural occurrence for all, or even a very high percentage of the backlinks, to have the same anchor text.
So now the current definition of a good backlink is a little more complex. The site that contains the backlink needs to be of good standing in the eyes of Google with decent quality content as well as be about the topic that is relevant in some way to the website the backlink is pointing at.
The backlink itself needs to be surrounded by high-quality, relevant content. Google is also looking for the content that the backlink points at to be something that would help the visitor to the original site; otherwise why add the backlink at all.
Not All Backlinks Are Equal
So you can see that when looking at the backlink itself there are many factors that have to be considered in order to ensure that the backlink helps the online marketing of the target site. High-quality backlinks, natural links in terms of the anchor text are used are more helpful to ensure that your blog post ranks highly.
Part of a Balanced Online Marketing Strategy
It is no longer possible to judge the value of a backlink by just looking at that backlink itself. It is extremely important that the backlink is a part of an overall balanced online marketing strategy. After the changes made by Google that we outlined above, it is now important that you look at the frequency of the different anchor text used to link back to your business’s site.
Too high an occurrence of the prime keyword phrases will alert Google to suspicions the backlinks may not be as natural as they first seemed but are in fact part of an organized SEO campaign to manipulate the target site ranking in the search engine results.
So now, more than ever before, it’s important to create an overall marketing strategy for your search engine optimization, break that down into segments and then make sure that any link building campaigns help boost traffic and achieve the goals needed to ensure your company website performs as well as it can in the search engine ranking.
Get this aspect of your digital marketing right, and you will not only see a boost in the search rankings of your domains, and an increase in relevant traffic, but you will also see an increase in their domain authority.
Types of Backlinks
As the search engine algorithm continues to progress, SEO experts and the SEO agency they work for, need to up their game and be more creative with the types of content they employ and the types of backlinks they use.
Citation Link Building
One of the types of links that are extremely important to businesses that need a presence in local searches is a citation. An effective way to boost the ranking performance of local business websites is to ensure that there is consistency in the publication and use of their NAP (name, address, phone). Whenever a local business publishes their NAP it will help Google to credit them with the full value of that business citation. Although it’s preferable for that citation to include a backlink to the target website, Google will still assign some value to the citation even if it doesn’t include an incoming link. Hence the importance of consistency in the way that the NAP is published, it just helps Google to help you.
Press Release Link Building
High-quality links can also be provided when building backlinks using the publication of press releases. Press release strategies should be an integral part of your content marketing as they are exactly the type of link to help you build a high-quality link profile. They are published on high traffic, high-quality websites, and the backlink from such a website is seen as a massive thumbs up in the eyes of Google.
Backlink Building Strategies
So as we can see, as the link building process continues to grow to be more complex and to avoid doing more damage than good to your website through collecting spammy links, overuse of keywords in your backlinks anchor text, broken links, it’s extremely important that you have a well thought out online marketing plan for your website.
This can be done by yourself if you have the experience and ability to put together an effective SEO strategy, know how to best use SEO tools, and understand which ranking factors you need to be aware of. If not, you can work together with your link-building agency to see how their backlink-building services can help you achieve the same goal.
It’s easy for a website owner to get confused with all the different types of SEO to try to understand and it seems that every new batch of emails brings the latest shiny toy that promises to rank your website on page 1 without any work. The truth of the matter is you need to start with a plan. If you need help to put that plan together and that’s where you should start.
We are more than happy here at LinkDaddy to help you put your online marketing plan together and show how our link building and other professional SEO services can help you make your website be the very best that it could be.