What is a Backlink?
A backlink is simply a link from one website (back) to another. If site owner A links to site owner B’s content, B has a backlink from A. Conversely, if site owner B links to site owner A’s content, A will have a backlink from B.
More About Backlinks
The Role of Backlinks in SEO
Backlinks are an integral part of SEO (search engine optimization). They create pathways for search engine crawlers to find your website and provide a signal to search engines that your website offers valuable content. This helps the search engines assess the quality of your site, which determines the placement of your pages in SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). By having more backlinks from reputable sources, websites can boost their rankings.
Not all backlinks are considered equal. Quality matters more than quantity when it comes to backlinks. Having a lot of low-quality links from spammy sites with low Domain Authority (DA) can actually harm your rankings instead.
Domain Authority (also commonly referred to as Domain Rating) that measures the authority of a domain on a scale from 0-100. It’s calculated based on the number and quality of websites linking to a given website. A higher Domain Authority score indicates that your website is more likely to rank higher in search engine results. Generally, any score above 30-40 is considered good for SEO purposes.
Topical relevance should also be taken into consideration when evaluating the impact of a backlink on SEO. This refers to how closely the linking website relates to the topic of your website. Search engines like Google are smart enough to understand when two websites are related and rank them accordingly. A link from a website that is highly relevant to yours will have greater weight in terms of ranking compared to a link from an irrelevant website, regardless of its Domain Authority score.
For example, if you have an e-commerce store selling pet products, getting a link from an animal shelter or any other pet-related business would be more beneficial than getting a link from a video game website.
Toxic & Spammy Backlinks
Common types of toxic and unnatural backlinks include link farms, auto-generated blogs, paid links, and link networks. Link farms are collections of websites set up to generate artificial link authority by linking to other sites in the network. Auto-generated blogs often contain content copied from other sources and are created solely to drive search engine traffic to a specific site. Paid links are any type of link purchased either for money or services in exchange for a link. And link networks are groups of websites with lots of interlinking between them.
How to Earn High Quality Backlinks
One of the best easy ways to earn high quality backlinks is through directories. Directories are websites that list and categorize different websites by topic or industry, and building a presence on these can be a great way to build links and increase your visibility online.
You can also reach out to other webmasters in your niche or industry for link exchanges, although this should be done with caution as search engines may view such practices as manipulative.
Press Release Distribution
Press releases are a great way to earn high quality backlinks because they can be distributed widely and reach many websites, blogs, and other online outlets. They also help build your reputation as an authority in your niche by providing valuable information that readers can use.
Content is King
It sounds cliche at this point, but content really is king. Creating quality content is quite simply one of the most effective way to earn natural backlinks over time. When you create content that other people find useful, they will often link back to it from their own website or blog as a reference.
It’s important to note, however, that this is a long-term strategy; you won’t get backlinks right away. But if you consistently create quality content it will eventually pay off with more backlinks pointing towards your website.