Feel like something is omitted in your SEO?  Well, I know what it is, and it’s right under your nose. It’s the colossal SEO backlinks  a detail that’s often ignored most of the time, by SEO experts and newbies alike.

Yup, there are still people with loads of keyword research and SEO experience who still have questions about backlinks.

What are backlinks? How do you get them? Are they worth the time? What is its impact on SEO? And so on.   

When you begin to learn SEO, one of the words you’ll often hear is “backlinks” or “incoming links.”

Want to know why?

Because, they still play an essential role in ranking and SEO, especially when it comes to Google. Also, if you spend any considerable time on the internet, then you’re indeed coming across tons of backlinks every time, even if you have no idea what they’re or you’re not aware of how prominent a role they play in your entire experience with the world wide web.

Just like bread and butter, SEO and backlinks go hand in hand. You cannot have one and forsake the other. For that reason, every conversation about SEO incorporates backlinks in one way or the other.

The fact is that every time you insert a phrase or keyword into a search engine like DuckDuckGo, Bing or Google, your search results are significantly determined by backlinks that have been expertly built in the name of SEO.

Most websites that have strong backlinks from other sites enjoy a very high level of trust from Google and this, in turn, translates into higher search engine rankings

Don’t worry, if you’ve every covertly asked yourself “what are backlinks or their importance in page ranking?” you’re going to find the answers right in this article. We’ll also talk about the importance of backlinks for page rankings.

Let’s get started.

What the Heck is a Backlink?

First of all, it’s essential to sort out what backlinks are. There’s no need to explain everything in detail. The fundamental thing is to understand what it entails and its importance.

In the world of SEO, backlinks, also referred to as “inbound links“, are one of the commonly used words that connote incoming links to a webpage. They’re kind of internet manipulator that links a particular site with other external websites which contain links to the former.  In other words, backlinks refer to a link that one website gets from another website.

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The simplest way to explain backlinks is to break down the word like: it’s a LINK that leads BACK to a webpage.

So, for instance, if you manage a website that sells and reviews spatulas and a food blogger posts a link to your retail site on her blog, then that’ll be a backlink. A very natural and good one for that matter since your site and that of the food blogger has a mutual theme and possibly a shared audience.

Furthermore, if five bloggers, one major retail website and one local news reporter each insert one link to your spatula website on their corresponding sites, then you’ve earned a total of seven backlinks.

Backlinks have a significant impact on a website’s prominence in SER (search engine results). That’s why they’re considered as a determinant and useful factor for improving a website’s SEO ranking.

A search engine uses many factors to calculate rankings and even though no one knows for sure the weight that search engines give to backlinks, what we do know is that they’re essential and still a very key metric for the ranking of a webpage.

As a matter of fact, a page with tons of backlinks is more prone to rank higher on every search engine, including Google.

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General Terms You Need to Know

Below is a dictionary of some words commonly related to backlinks that you need to be familiar with.

Link Juice:

When a webpage links to your website’s homepage or any of your articles, then it passes “link juice.” This link juice improves domain authority and helps with the ranking of the article. As a blogger, you can use the no-follow tag to stop passing link juice.

Do-Follow Link:

Usually, all the links that you incorporate to a blog post are do-follow links and they pass link juice.

No-Follow Link:

Whenever a site links to another different website but the link doesn’t have a no-follow tag then the link doesn’t pass link juice. When it comes to the ranking of a page, a no-follow link doesn’t have any impact. Generally, webmasters use the no-follow tag when linking to an untrustworthy site.

Low-Quality Links:

These are links that come from automated sites, harvested sites, porn sites or even spam sites. Low-quality links do more harm than good, and that’s one of the reasons why you should be very cautious when purchasing backlinks.

Linking Root Domain:

This denotes the number of backlinks that come into your website from a unique and dedicated domain. Even if a website links to your site twenty times, it’d still be considered as a single linked root domain.

Anchor Text:

Anchor text is the text that’s used for hyperlinks. They work great especially when you’re trying to rank for specific keywords.

Internal Links:

Internal links are links that are directed from one page to another page within the same domain. The entire process is denoted as interlinking or internal linking.

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Importance of Backlinks

Before we dive into the perks of backlinks, you need to be aware in the past couple of years; a lot has changed about backlinks.

There was a period when even low-quality backlinks helped in ranking a site. But since Google rolled out its Penguin algorithm, the entire landscape of backlinking has transformed.

Having contextual backlinks from quality sites is essential. If, for instance, your site is centered on fish and you’re creating links from other unrelated niche sites about donkeys, then these links will be useless.

Your aim should be to get links from relevant and authoritative websites.

Now, let’s take a look at the strengths of backlinks and why it’s essential for page ranking.

Improves Organic Rankings

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Backlinks come in handy for getting better and efficient searching engine rankings. The most straightforward description is this: Backlinks are the ways through which Google Spiders find new pages on the web. Just like we make use of a map to locate places in a new city, Google Spiders leverages on backlinks to find, crawl and index pages on your website.

Ponder over it.

You’re much more expected to locate a new city given that it’s connected to other cities right? That’s the reason why a very tiny town that is situated in the middle of nowhere could take very long to locate (i.e. if you’re able to locate it).

What insight can we get from this?

Well, tons of backlinks give your website more chance to be found quickly. That leads to higher rankings and faster indexing in a shorter period.

For instance, if you enter the topic “SEO Backlinks” into the Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer, you’ll see a bulk of the high-ranking pages have many backlinks. As shown in the figure below:

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SERP is an abbreviation for “search engine results page,” and the screenshot above is merely reflecting what people see in Google.

If your content is getting backlinks from other websites, the content will undoubtedly begin to rank higher in the search results. Otherwise, you need to get proactive and build great contents.

Your goal should be to create links to individual pages/posts alongside those leading to your homepage.

Backlinks are Google’s internet navigation tool, therefore it’s essential that you build a bunch of them to your site to enhance the average time it’ll take SEO to work (averagely, that could be anything from 4 to 6 months)

Not to discourage you, but we’d all love to see faster rankings right? With relevant and high-quality backlinks, you can quickly speed up the SERPs the proper way.  

Faster Indexing

Search engine bots use backlinks from existing webpages to discover new webpages.

Hence, it’ll be more challenging for the bots to locate your site if you don’t have any backlinks at all. Particularly for a new website, it’s essential to get backlinks because they’ll help to index the site and lead to faster discovery.

Backlinks are Google’s Reputation Management Tool

Regrettably, Google isn’t human. Even though its algorithm was created and manned by actual people, it doesn’t have a human brain.

Settled, that can have some perks- but Google is trying as much as possible to catch-up when determining websites that are worthy of high rankings.

You see, backlinks are so essential to SEO because Google uses it to define how reputable and popular your site is.

Since their original vision is to navigate searchers in the direction of the best possible result that matches their search query, they won’t lead the searchers in the direction of a website that’s writing to crickets.

Instead, they want to point searchers to a well-known website- because popular sites can be trusted and they have a good reputation.

Let’s be a little bit practical and personal; try it out yourself. Which of these sites would you prefer and trust more?

  1. A site with over 400 backlinks
  2. A site with 5 backlinks

I bet that you’ll go with the first option.

Rightly put. Even Google would have the same answer because we all think of backlink-rich and popular websites as a more dependable option.

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Boosts Credibility

Moving on from the clarification of Google wanting to display the highest-quality results for a user’s search results, backlinks are also essential because they improve credibility.

Here’s what I’m trying to say:

If a car producer has a backlink profile with incoming links from car news sites or automotive blog; you’d think that they were more trustworthy right? If other related sites link to the contents on the car manufacturer’s website, it can be securely presumed that they must be sharing something valuable.

On the contrary, if a car manufacturer has backlink profiles with incoming links from food stores or pet blogs, it’d have the opposite effect.  

Google would be like “Hmmmmmm…… Is this site an influential source in the automotive industry?” – and that consideration is what might cost you those relevant rankings.

It’s worth noting that Google utilizes backlinks to determine your online reputation. So, collecting backlinks just from anywhere you can get your hands on, especially if it’s not relevant won’t do you any good.

It could have a contrary effect- and make you punished by Google.

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Referral Traffic

I’m not going to bore you off with the whole “Google wants to display the best results…” talk again. You’re aware of that by now. Although, the same principle applies when we’re talking about the additional benefits of referral traffic to your website through the power of juicy backlinks.

Ponder over this. “Google won’t trust websites that don’t get any traffic – certainly, such sites will sit lower down in the search engine result pages.”Albeit, websites with tons of traffic must be reliable and offer some pretty values… am I right?

Backlinks are beneficial for getting referral traffic. Fundamentally, once a person is reading a post, there’s every tendency that he/she will click on the links in the post to get more information about the topic at hand.

No matter what, whether it’s through guest post submission, directory listing or social media share, anyone who clicks a backlink and navigates to your site helps to enhance your referral traffic.

Since most persons click on links willingly, they’re normally more targeted and less probable to leave the page fast (i.e., a low bounce rate). Typically, referral traffic is targeted, and it has a very low bounce rate.

So, whenever you’re implementing your link building strategy, be on the lookout for backlinks from high-quality, relevant websites with a domain authority of over 40. These sites have a larger, well-known audience and an enhanced method of increasing the overall traffic to your website.

CONCLUSION

Backlinks are essential for SEO and the evolution and sustainability of a website. Contemporary studies have revealed that the role of backlinks in the page ranking algorithm is still very fundamental. What you need to enhance your ranking is high-quality backlinks from related and renowned sites.

In the past, we used to think that a link is a link, but the case is different today. Rather than going for any link, ensure to go after links that matter. Backlinks can give your site the additional push it needs to navigate to the top and enjoy the benefits of 24 hours, 7 days’ non-stop organic traffic.

We’re hopeful that the information and insight shared in this article are precious and useful to you. And once again, let’s sum up by responding to the following questions together.

What is a backlink? It’s an outward link that leads to your site

What are they used for? Backlinks serve as authority boosters.

How to get them? You can either build them yourself or earn them.

How to transform your website content into qualitative content? Remain exceptional and aim to publish high-quality information that’ll be useful to all those who’ll take their time to visit.

Do you have further questions about the power of backlinks for page ranking? Would you like to inform us about backlinks strategies that worked for you? We’d be eager to hear from you; leave us a comment below.

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