free online marketing reportBook Consultation

What are backlinks and why are they important?

Ahmed Bedair
January 1, 2021

Backlinks are hyperlinks from one website to another, also known as “inbound links”. So when a website links to you, you’ve earned a backlink, and when you link to them, you give them a backlink. This process is called “link building”. Backlinks are extremely important for SEO and are key to a successful website.  This is because the more backlinks you have, the higher you’ll rank on search engines.

What are backlinks?

However, as always, it’s quality over quantity. You want to get high-quality backlinks, even if it’s just from a few sites, instead of many random ones. Read on to find out what high-quality backlinks are and how to get them.

If you want to understand how to get backlinks, you first need to know what hyperlinks are. Hyperlinks often referred to as just “links”, allow users to navigate between pages on the internet. Additionally, search engines use links to crawl the web and index pages. They crawl the links between single pages on your site as well as links between entire websites. Search engines use links for two main reasons:

  1. To discover new web pages
  2. To determine how well a page should rank in their results.
Hyperlinks are web addresses

After search engines are done crawling web pages, they extract the content of those pages and add them to their indexes. This allows them to determine whether a page’s quality is good enough to be ranked highly for relevant keywords. This is where backlinks come in.

In order for search engines to decide on a page’s ranking, they look at the number and quality of links pointing to it from other websites. The more high-quality websites that link to you, the more likely you are to rank higher on search engine results.

Backlinks are seen as a vote of confidence about the quality of a page. This is because people wouldn’t link to your page if it’s not worth it or doesn’t offer quality content.

Backlinks are important for google search results

In essence, high-quality backlinks redirect visitors to other pages using keywords. However, Google takes a lot more factors into account in order to qualify a backlink as high quality.

Links from websites that are relevant to your industry rank better in Google’s eyes. For example, if you’re a home décor company, an inbound link from a construction website is more useful than one from a health and fitness website.

Not only do you need to get inbound links from relevant sites, but links to your pages on other sites have to be relevant too. This is determined by clicks. If a link to your site on another page is relevant to that page’s topic, more people will click on it.

relevant backlinks

Trust and credibility

A link from a well-trusted site is more valuable to Google. For example, if website A gets a backlink from the Huffington Post, while website B gets a backlink from website A, a search engine will more likely trust site A. 

Getting links from different domains and types of domains is crucial because it shows that a variety of people trust you. For example, you shouldn’t have backlinks from only one website, or only web directories. Additionally, the location of links (body, footer, sidebar, etc.) and a variety of anchor texts influence diversity.

Create content

Having good quality content on your site makes it much more likely to get quality backlinks. High-quality content means content that is valuable and informative, which people will naturally want to link to. There are many ways you can create good content that establish you as an authority.

Publish original research

You can conduct surveys, use your business data, carry out case studies, and create other content based on original research not found on other sites. For example, you can publish industry statistics and data, which will make other sites link to you for new information.

Create comprehensive resources

Catch the attention of other publishers and gain high-quality backlinks by creating comprehensive resources with in-depth information. You can create detailed guides, checklists, and glossaries, which other websites will find valuable.

Create the content on current events to build high-quality backlinks from news sites and other time-sensitive media outlets. If your content relates to current trends, that increases momentary interest and can lead to a concentration of backlinks.

If a site is linking to a competitor, then they’re likely to link to you. You can use various SEO tools, such as Ahref’s site explorer to find the domains linking to your competitors. Click on any of the backlinks to check the kind of content that links to your competitor.

Then, send the publisher a request to link to your site as well. For example, if it’s a list of businesses in your industry, ask to be included. Don’t forget to show them why your business is valuable and should be included.

Learn more about how you can build quality backlinks.

Not only does link building improve your website’s ranking on search engines, but it also has many business benefits.

Building relationships

Link building involves linking to other pages that are relevant to your industry or topic, sometimes with the intention of getting a link back. But there’s a lot more to it. Outreach, which involves promoting your content to interested parties with the hope of getting links from them can help you build long-term relationships with the influencers in your industry.

This will increase your business’s reputation and credibility. As a result, you’ll create genuine, credible advocates of your business and attract more customers.

Increasing traffic

Naturally, the higher you rank on search engines, the more traffic you get. However, the influence of backlinks on traffic doesn’t stop there. A quality link from a frequently-visited website can increase your traffic. Especially if it’s a relevant website, then the traffic will also likely be relevant which may lead to more sales.

Source: Ahrefs

Brand building

Effective link building can help build your brand and make you an authority in your niche. You can utilize some link building techniques such as content creation. This can show people your expertise in a field and make them trust you, lifting your brand higher.

For example, if you create a high-quality piece of content on industry data and publish it, you can become well known for it in your industry. This will establish you as an expert and make people reach out to you more.

Make sure you have something worth linking to

While having all this information up your sleeve can certainly help you craft a successful link building strategy, it’s all worthless if you have nothing valuable to link to. Usually, you can link to your homepage. However, the best practice is to build links to specialized resources like blog posts, useful tools, research studies, or graphics.

This is because the end goal is to provide value to visitors, and these resources give users the information they need. You can either link to preexisting resources or create your own with the intention of link building. Whatever you do, make sure you provide value.

Wanted to get started with link building but not sure how to begin? Let us help. We'll study your company, website, and industry to identify which backlinks you need and how to outperform your competitors.

menu linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram