We’re all pretty familiar with links and linking (not to be confused with the iconic Zelda character) in online content—but what about backlinking? At this moment, you might be wondering, what even is it? Terminology like this can be a point of confusion, especially if SEO isn’t your natural forte. But just like you did back in middle and high school with “No Fear Shakespeare,” there is a way to decipher and get a better grasp of concepts like these. Allow us to help shed some much-needed light on the subject (your SEO CliffNotes, if you will).
What is a backlink? A backlink happens when one website links to another. This is also commonly referred to as an inbound or incoming link. Simple enough, right? While simple, backlinks are like supercharged SEO signals. This is because they act as a kind of vote of confidence or credibility between websites: When one site links to another, they are signaling to search engines an endorsement of that site’s content.
So, yes, backlinking is kind of a recommendation system or sophisticated popularity contest. If a ton of sites are linking to the same website or webpage, this lets search engines know that that content is offering something truly link-worthy. This can help that page rank on SERPs and even improve a site’s entire visibility in search because of it.
How Do I Get Backlinks?
Now that we know how useful backlinks are, the obvious next question is how to get them.
Earning backlinks is known in SEO circles as link building or link earning. And the important thing to remember here is this: not all backlinks are created equal. Followed backlinks from sites high in authority, popularity, and/or credibility are the backlinks you want. Backlinks from spammy or otherwise low-quality sites aren’t.
Now, there’s something SEOs do when linking worth mentioning here: follow and nofollow links. As their names suggest, these links are either indicated in the source code as ‘follow’ or ‘no follow.’ This designation informs search engines whether to pass or not pass on a link, i.e., follow it off site or not. This can affect the value a site places on another, but that doesn’t mean it nullifies it outright. Even having a nofollow link from someone else’s site (again, ideally high-authority) can offer SEO value and brand boosting.
Now back to the question at hand: How do I earn backlinks? The short and not-so-simple answer? Provide high-quality and high-authority content to your audience and it’ll likely happen organically (and eventually). However, there are things you can do, such as competitive backlink researching, to help understand your competition’s keyword success strategy and link building tree. You can then use this information to target those domains in your own campaigns.
If nearly everything in this article is news to you, don’t fret over it: Uptick Marketing is here to help get down to brass tacks and do what’s best for your business. We can help you with things like competitive backlink researching, building brand identity, and improving your site’s online authority through blogging and SEO. Contact us for a no-obligation fact finder to see how we can best meet the needs of your business.