What Is A Backlink In SEO?

SEO backlink building is a core aspect of Search Engine Optimisation because of its impact on the amount of traffic you will receive on your website. There are different good link building Strategies and some bad ones which we will discuss below. Google has provided a guide to help you know what is approved and what is not.

Crawlers like Google bots move through backlinks to discover other websites linking to your website. This makes it easier for Google to understand what your content is all about. This improved understanding of your content will help Google to serve up your page when users search for terms related to your content.

What Is A Backlink In SEO?

What is a backlink? A link may send you to a different page when you click on it. You will either be transferred to a page within the same website or to a different one. When a website backlinks to your own website, you will receive an inbound link. Users will be sent to your website following this inbound link.

In other words, you have received a backlink to your website. Backlink building includes all activities either on-page or off-page, which help you in SEO link building. There are various backlinking Strategies you can use to start building your backlink profile for your website.

What Is An Example Of A Backlink?

An example of a backlink is easy for you to understand when you know the various forms of backlinks as listed below:

  • A Highlighted or differently coloured text within the content.
  • A website's address or URL inserted directly into a body of content.
  • A banner or Logo which redirects you when it is clicked.
  • An Embedded link placed in a Video or picture which redirects you when it is clicked

A backlink can either be a good, bad or toxic backlink.

Good Backlinks

Good backlinks are usually the backlinks that improve the ranking of your website. They are usually

  • From high authority websites and high authority pages
  • They are links from websites with a topic related to yours.
  • Links from organisations where you offered sponsorships or where you funded projects.

Bad backlinks

You should avoid bad backlinks because they do not follow Google's guidelines, and you can get penalised for them.

  • Buying backlinks is not allowed under the Google guidelines as this is an attempt to manipulate Google's Page rank. Backlinks are supposed to be earned, so paid backlinks are classified as bad ones.
  • Spammy links are another type of bad backlinks. They are links that are sometimes links from blogs unrelated to your topic or include anchor texts in incorrect English.
  • Hidden backlinks are links that users of the website do not see but are only visible to the crawling spiders. Google discourages any disparity between what the users view and what the bot can see.

What Is A Toxic Backlink?

In the quest of acquiring backlinks, all backlinks are not equal. Any linkbuilding strategies to manipulate Google Pagerank will create either a bad or toxic backlink.

  • High Toxic marker score: Semrush has a toxic marker measurement that helps show you if you have some toxic backlinks in your backlink profile.
  • When measured by the Moz spam checker, backlinks that show a high spam score are toxic. Good backlinks will return a very low spam score when run through this Moz tool.
  • Backlinks from a non-indexed site are not good backlinks. It is bad and could well be a toxic backlink.
  • Backlinks from websites with a poor backlink profile are also toxic backlinks.

Impact of a toxic backlink

Toxic backlinks can lead to a drop in your ranking on the search engine results pages. Google can also penalise your website if it has a lot of these toxic links. You will have to manually remove each link from your website to reverse a Google penalty.

You will also need time to rise back to your previous ranking before the penalty was applied. If you have a sudden drop in organic traffic, performing a backlink audit will be a good idea to investigate if toxic backlinks are the cause.

How to remove toxic backlinks

Here are some tips on how to remove toxic backlinks:

  • Ask the linking website to remove the links.
  • Manually remove the links.
  • Disavow the links to let Google understand that you do not approve of the toxic links. This is a temporary action while you take steps to remove them permanently

Why do I need backlinks?

Backlinks increase the traffic to your website. They send readers to your website when they click on a link within an article on another website.

Besides direct traffic from other websites to your website, backlinks help put you in a higher position in search engine result pages, improving your chances of getting even more traffic. It is important to get backlinks to your website because it signals to Google that you have quality content that other websites want to share.

Google rewards you by increasing the position of your article when users search for that topic, leading to an increase in traffic to your website.

What is a high quality backlink?

High-quality backlinks in a backlink profile require much research during backlink building. You can recognise high-quality backlinks based on metrics popular in the SEO linking building niche.

High-quality backlinks are usually one from a relevant website or topic from a website with a high Domain Authority. An easy way to infer the quality of a website or a page is by checking a measure called domain authority (DA) and Page Authority (PA), developed by Moz to rank websites and pages.

The quality of backlinks depends on the DA and PA of the referring website and the website’s relevance to your topics. The DA and PA values themselves are not one of Google’s ranking factors.

However, when you get a backlink from a relevant and high authority website or webpage, those are the best backlinks to have as they will boost your likelihood to rank higher on search result pages.

The common metrics are Trust Flow, measured by Majestic, and Citation flow, measured by Moz. A good backlink will have a good Trust Flow, whereas a bad or toxic backlink will not.

What Is A DoFollow Backlink?

Dofollow backlinks improve your rankings. They transfer authority to your website from the link source. Transferred authority is sometimes referred to as link juice.

Dofollow backlinks are the preferred type of backlinks due to the positive effect on your website ranking. The default setting when building links is a dofollow.

What Is A NoFollow Backlink?

A no-follow backlink is a backlink that does not transfer any authority to your website. It does not positively impact your rankings as no link juice flows through your website. However, you still need nofollow backlinks for your backlink profile to appear natural to Google. Backlinks from social media profiles are usually set to nofollow using a command.

How To Build Your Backlink Profile

To build your backlink profile, you may either do it yourself or contact experts (Link to contact information of SEO Science) that offer SEO services in backlink building.

The following tips will help you if you want to build your backlink profile yourself.

  • Local listings and directories. These include sites where the names and addresses of businesses in your community are listed, like Google my Business, Yell and Yelp.
  • You can get news and press release backlinks on newsworthy events in your business. This strategy is sometimes called digital PR.
  • Guest posting on other websites allows you to link back to your website.
  • Internal Linking, these internal links can boost the visibility of some of your internal pages. People will want to share content on social media or their website is a good source of backlinks.
  • The final step is monitoring your backlinks to see when you have lost any links. Sometimes backlinks are built to your site without your consent, and you may need to disavow these backlinks. Disavowing links helps to maintain the integrity of your backlink profile.

What Is A Backlink In SEO? Learn More Here

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