Search engines, like Google, take into account a variety of different ranking factors when determining the visibility of websites within results pages. Backlinks, the links that lead to your website from elsewhere online, are among these important factors. As specialists in website design in Surrey, this blog will explain exactly what makes a quality backlink and why it’s important.
Backlinks – Overview
Link building has long been a vital part of search engine optimization (SEO). However, it’s often a misunderstood and frankly abused strategy. In short, backlinks should be trustworthy endorsements of your website. It’s not a way to simply manipulate search engine results.
Now we have got that out of the way, what factors should you consider when looking for links?
Does Pagerank Matter?
PageRank is often a misunderstood Google algorithm. Despite what many inexperienced or simply out of date marketers might tell you, pagerank has little to do with link building. Thus, it’s not a factor you need to take into account when looking for websites to receive backlinks from.
Major marketing firms will use domain authority to determine the authority of a particular site based on its size, age and level of trust associated with it. A sites’ domain authority is given a score out of 100. Whilst domain authority has little to do with the content relevance or anchor text, it’s still an immensely useful attribute that you should consider when looking for link building opportunities.
It’s also important to consider with backlinks how content relates to your own. Links exist for the sake of the readers not for the search engines. Therefore, having backlinks on irrelevant sites will have no benefit and may even be seen negatively by Google as a possible breach of their webmaster guidelines.
Follow and Nofollow Links
No follow attributes when assigned to a link, tell search engine crawlers not to pay attention to them. This may on the surface seem counterproductive. However, with regards to SEO, this can actually be quite beneficial.
The intent of nofollow attributes is to cut down on link spamming. For example, on blog comments where people would post unnecessary comments in order to gain an easy link to a site. Nofollow changes this, rendering these links somewhat useless, telling search engines to disregard them.
If you wish to link to a URL that you don;t want Google to follow from your site, use “nofollow” when you link.
Link building can be summed up in a lot of cases by the fact that the easier a link is to require, the less useful it will be. However, there are exceptions to this rule. For example, linking from companies and people you already have an existing relationship with can be immensely useful in terms of relevancy. However, spammy article directors or press release websites are often valueless despite how easy they are to obtain. Overall, good backlinks take time and effort to find and will often come to you if your site is worthy of them. These links are considerably more useful than low-quality backlinks or irrelevant websites and directories with no specific focus or relevancy to your site.
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