What is a backlink?
A backlink is a link created when one website links to another. Backlinks are also called “inbound links” or “incoming links.” Backlinks are important to SEO.
Why are backlinks important?
Backlinks are especially valuable for SEO because they represent a “vote of confidence” from one site to another.
In essence, backlinks to your website are a signal to search engines that others vouch for your content. If many sites link to the same webpage or website, search engines can infer that content is worth linking to, and therefore also worth surfacing on a SERP. So, earning these backlinks can have a positive effect on a site’s ranking position or search visibility.
Earning and giving backlinks
Earning backlinks is an essential component of off-site SEO. The process of obtaining these links is known as link earning or link building.
Some backlinks are inherently more valuable than others. Followed backlinks from trustworthy, popular, high-authority sites are considered the most desirable backlinks to earn, while backlinks from low-authority, potentially spammy sites are typically at the other end of the spectrum. Whether or not a link is followed (i.e. whether a site owner specifically instructs search engines to pass, or not pass, link equity) is certainly relevant, but don’t entirely discount the value of nofollow links. Even just being mentioned on high-quality websites can give your brand a boost.
Just as some backlinks you earn are more valuable than others, links you create to other sites also differ in value. When linking out to an external site, the choices you make regarding the page from which you link (its page authority, content, search engine accessibility, and so on) the anchor text you use, whether you choose to follow or nofollow the link, and any other meta tags associated with the linking page can have a heavy impact on the value you confer.
Competitive backlink research
Backlinks can be time-consuming to earn. New sites or those expanding their keyword footprint may find it difficult to know where to start when it comes to link building. That’s where competitive backlink research comes in: By examining the backlink profile (the collection of pages and domains linking to a website) to a competitor that’s already ranking well for your target keywords, you can gain insight about the link building that may have helped them. A backlink tool like Link Explorer can help uncover these links so you can and target those domains in your own link building campaigns.
HERE ARE THE 9 BEST PRACTICES TO GENERATE BACKLINKS TO YOUR WEBSITE
When it comes to developing backlinks to your brand’s website, it can be frustrating, as it is a process that requires patience, work, and dedication. Gone are the days of simple SEO, where you could insert any link to your website anywhere on the web. For backlinks to be truly successful, digital marketers and copywriters must be conscious about their backlink generating strategy.
As one of the traditional Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques, backlinks provide websites with easy ways of increasing their search traffic and rankings on various search engines. However, only high-quality links are needed to generate best-in-class SEO results and increase your website traffic.
Since backlinks became a popular way of boosting a site’s SEO rankings, Google has changed how they classify backlinks and how they affect SEO rankings. This means that to build backlinks now, it’s important that site owners and managers work hard to organically grow their backlinks over time.
What Are Backlinks?
Simply put, a backlink, also known as an external backlink, is when another site owner links to your website somewhere in their content. This could be on a blog post, a service page, or on any other page on a website. Backlinks are important for SEO as the amount of authentic, high-value backlinks that you have backs up the quality of the content on your website.
How Can You Generate Backlinks to Your Website?
Although it’s near impossible to know the exact algorithm that Google and other search engines use to qualify your content for SEO purposes, there are some best practices that best-in-class site owners and managers use to increase their SEO rankings and generate genuine backlinks to their website.
Use the following tips and tricks to generate backlinks and grow your online presence for your website:
1.Allow Others to Credit Their Work for You
From web designers to copywriters, entrepreneurs and businesses are always looking to create portfolios to showcase their best and most recent work. Often, these portfolios will have some sort of backlink to your site for viewers to review a service provider’s work.
Not only does allowing backlinks from portfolios help enhance the business of the person who helped you make your business better, but it helps you appear higher in Google search rankings.
2. Develop Shareable Content
Shareable content is just that – shareable – providing you with the opportunity to have your expertise pushed throughout the Internet and the chance that your website will be linked to multiple web pages and platforms. Whether you decide to create a well-researched blog post, actionable eBook, or valuable infographic, any shared content can be distributed with a call-to-action (CTA) asking content viewers to distribute the content as they see fit.
Pinterest is another great way to generate backlinks. Make sure that all of your blog posts, case studies, infographics, and high-value sharable content is linked to your Pinterest board. If an individual finds your work and insights valuable, there is a chance that they will create a backlink when posting the content in a blog post or on one of their web pages.
The initial reach out can be done over social media, using hashtags and other methods of targeted distribution to reach people within your niche.
3. Backlink from Your Own Website
As another form of shareable content, create well-researched posts that link to other valuable content that fit into a specific niche. For example, creating countdown posts to your favorite CRM tools or travel blogs allows you to link to recognized web content, and creates the opportunity for that respected site to share your post and link back to your website.
It’s all about putting your best foot forward when working to generate backlinks, so why not give a shout-out to the products, services, or content creators that help make your daily life better?
Additionally, you may choose to do a simple content round-up to compile helpful tips and tricks for a certain topic or concept. If this is the case, you can find timely content using Feedly. Feedly helps you sort through available content to find articles and blog posts that relate to a specific topic or niche. Try creating a content roundup once a week to keep your readers updated on topics of interest, and make sure to link back to all mentioned websites.
4. Write More Guest Posts
Guest posts are one of the best ways to showcase your industry expertise while generating high-quality backlinks. Most websites and blogs post a short writer biography at the beginning or end of each post, allowing space for backlinks.
Not only does writing guest posts allow you to demonstrate your knowledge, but collaborating with others helps you build a professional rapport and cultivate a brand personality. Reaching out to websites with a large following can be scary, but it will be well worth it if your guest blog proposal winds up being successful!
5. Network Online
Whether you’re an online entrepreneur or successful business owner, you’ve probably been given this advice more than once: networking is key to business success. Now, networking has come into the digital realm with sites like LinkedIn and Facebook for business. Networking carries more benefits than ever, with the opportunity to pitch guest blog posts, share valuable content, and even agree to backlink to the website of those you have a close professional relationship within your industry or niche.
Networking can be valuable for everyone involved, and allow you to work on your professional communication and online business-building strategy.
6. Get Creative
If you want to speed up your backlink development process, it’s time to get creative with your strategies. Shareable content is a high-value, high-return endeavor, so why not use your creativity to start a new project and generate backlinks?
Linking to your website on various social media platforms is immensely helpful, but make sure that you use them sparingly, rather than linking to your site in every post you make. If you’re an industry expert, why not use all of your knowledge to share the work that you’ve done for other clients? Case studies and reports on past client work or customer experiences can be freely shared on your social media platforms while demonstrating your expertise and value to potential customers.
In the same way that you let your designers and digital service providers promote the work that they’ve done for your website, you can ask that clients share the case study you developed on their project be shared on their social media accounts. Case studies also come in useful when you’re working to land a guest posting deal with a large-scale website, as it shows that you truly care about your work and are proud to share it with others.
7. Collaborate on Creative Projects
Collaborative creative endeavors are a great way to build backlinks to your website and reach a wider audience at the same time. Projects like podcasts have become increasingly popular with creatives and business owners alike, as it allows them to share their expertise while linking back to their website in every episode description.
8. Stick with Your Niche
Networking and deciding to exchange backlinks can be fruitful for all parties involved, but only when it’s done right. Make sure that you take time to get to know the professional, their business, and how your content can best fit on their website. For example, there’s no point sharing an in-depth case study on a coaching client on a leadership development blog if there are no direct ties.
Your niche matters when building backlinks, so make sure that your link sharing practice aligns with your niche to keep a clean “record” and improve your SEO rankings.
9. Conduct Interviews and be Interviewed
No matter the industry, interviews are completed on a regular basis to generate shareable content for websites and publications alike. If you’re a good public speaker or have time to type a thoughtful reply to a list of suggested interview questions, this tactic may be a good bet at increasing the number of backlinks to your website.
The most important factor in building backlinks is ensuring that every website that you are linked from is just as dedicated to quality content as you are. Although we do not know the exact criteria that classify a website as “quality” or not to Google, it’s impressive what a couple of high-value backlinks can do to improve your SEO rankings.
Generating backlinks can be a tedious process, but if you’re dedicated to generating high-quality backlinks on a range of websites and social media accounts in your niche, you can stay in Google’s “good books” and experience an increase in web traffic over time.
Remember that the quality of your own website and content goes a long way in relationship building and cultivating professional rapport with other website owners who will potentially backlink to your website. Make your content useful and actionable, target highly rated websites, and continually nurture online professional relationships to generate the types of backlinks that can positively affect your SEO rankings.