What Are Backlinks
When the founders of Google, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, introduced the idea of links as the measurement of a website’s page relevance in a search engine, they out ruled the theory of using ONLY “keywords” as a sign of relevancy. Henceforth, difficult terms like backlinks, outbound links, link bombing etc. were added to the SEO dictionary, much to the annoyance of those already struggling with optimization techniques.
So let’s start with understanding their breakthrough idea; with full intension of making it as easy for you as possible.
Any website commonly consists of internal links, backlinks/inbound links, and outbound links; whether you notice or not! In case you haven’t, you might want to notice them now, as these are very useful in bringing your site to the front during web searches.
What are Backlinks?
Just like the little building blocks in a LEGO® City that support the existence of the whole structure, backlinks are those links that support the PageRankings of your website. Although, they’re not the only ones to do so; your own content and its presentation need to be the foremost pillars.
Also commonly known as Inbound Links (IBLs), backlinks are links directing to your website (Destination Website) through other websites (Source Websites). This is how more people are brought to your website. If you have worked with any traffic analysis tool or used SearchEnabler SEO tool, you must have seen referring sites in your Traffic Sources. This is what tells you where some or most of your traffic is coming from.
Backlinks make your website go internet-social. They drive the internet traffic in on your website. So, of course you need to have loads of backlinks. It is very much “Spreading your word” – about your website!
BACKLINKS ARE GOOD, BUT YOU NEED TO EARN IT
Quality Backlinks Only
A thousand backlinks to your website are good. But out of that thousand, if you have only about 200 quality backlinks then only those 200 are going to support your PageRank while the 800 artificial links go to waste. Sometimes those low quality backlinks can even get your sites penalized and impact search rankings negatively.
- Go for sites with Similar Content!
- Link using a relevant Anchor Text!
- No to Link bombing! – Just because backlinks are good does not mean you start bombing the web with backlinks.
- No artificial links! – more links on same IP address, -reciprocal links.
- Do not deliberately manipulate search engine indexes by SPAMDEXING.
Backlinks V/s Inbound Links
There is much confusion on the internet over the difference between the two terms. Although, there is no difference between them! People often get inbound links confused with internal links.
Internal links are links on your website that direct to a page within your website.
Inbound Links V/s Outbound Links
Inbound links (IBLs) are links to your website from other websites. Whereas, Outbound Links (OBLs) are the ones from your website to other websites.
A link from website ‘A’ referring to website ‘B’ is an outbound link for ‘A’. Similarly, for website ‘B’, this link is an inbound link, driving traffic its way.Outbound links are your neighbourhood
You need to be careful with these outbound links, though. Just like your website, other websites also have their own reputations and popularity. These can range from the most popular and reputed ones that have the highest PageRanking, to ones that have been penalized, or simply disregarded by Search engines for being unworthy. Referring to low PageRanking sites can thereby harm your website ranking. It is always wise to keep a healthy neighbourhood! Try making neighbours with websites that have a higher PageRank than your own.One backlink from a high authority website is more valuable than 100s of backlinks from low authority websites.
You also don’t want to create a ‘No neighbourhood’ situation just to escape having a bad neighbourhood! Remember that outbound links matters as much as the inbound links.