This article provides background information on backlinks and how best to build a backlink strategy.
What are backlinks?
Backlinks are links to your website from another website.
Why are backlinks important?
You can think of backlinks as a type of endorsement. These endorsements from other websites vouch for the content on your website. The more quality endorsements you have, the more positive signals are sent to search engines about your content. With these signals, search engines can prioritize which websites are endorsed by the community and when they should be in the search engine results pages.
What is a quality backlink vs. a spammy backlink?
Just as with any endorsement, the source of the endorsement matters. This means backlinks from reputable and trustworthy websites will carry more weight than websites that are untrustworthy and spammy. In fact, search engines like Google will weigh the sources of backlinks and actually reduce your ranking if you have too many spammy backlinks.
How do I build backlinks?
Create Articles and Content: Create good content that is unique and useful so that other websites will want to link to your website. This kind of content is often called “link bait” and is the most natural and intended form of link building. It is also easier to get backlinks when you have great content on your website. Why would another website link to you if you have poor content?
Building Relationships: Having good relationships with other websites can lead to a great backlink profile. Ask for backlinks from groups you sponsor, local businesses/organizations, business partners, travel bloggers, etc. These are all good quality backlinks.
Directory Submission: Submit your website’s information to reputable local directories, to create listings that will link back to the original website (use this technique in moderation).
Guest/Blog/Forum Posting: Post comments in relevant blogs, forums, articles, etc. that have links to websites that are relevant to you (use this technique in moderation).
*Note: Since the release of Google’s Penguin Updates, Google has had a laser focus on targeting websites who try to spam their way into Search Engine results. Reduce the number of spammy backlinks and instead focus on getting good backlinks for your website. Focus on quality of backlinks over quantity of backlinks.