Why Are Backlinks Important for SEO?
No one can deny the importance of backlinks for a website . Strong backlinks play a vital role in ranking and indexing the website pages or posts in Google and, by extension, the other search engines. Google has been changing their algorithm, but backlinks have been crucial to ranking in their search results since Google was founded! Therefore, there it is important to understand the types of backlinks and how does each backlink type work for a website.
There are some alternate names for a backlink. It is called inbound link, incoming link, or even just a link as well. A backlink links one website to another. It is a clickable link that is meant for referencing purpose as Google and other search engine consider it a vote to increase a site’s credibility and, therefore, increase it search engine results.
So, the question arises, why are backlinks even important? Well, this is because Google and other search engines say so. Without credible and strong backlinks, ranking a website becomes almost impossible unless your competition is very low. Backlinks increase (or decrease) your relationship with your niche or category to boost your reputation and branding.
Different Types of Backlinks
Google’s algorithm updates have destroyed the rankings of many websites in the past by knocking out the value of specific types of links. In order to rank and level up the website, you must know the different types of backlinks and how each type works. If you, or the SEO Company you hire, isn’t mindful of the types and quality of your links, the SEO you’re doing could actually hurt you.
(1) Guest Posting
Guest Posting is also known as guest blogging. It is a technique to write for another website in order to get backlinks to your website. For Google, guest post backlinks can be of high credibility, so their importance has risen during the recent update as other types of backlinks have been targeted by Google as spammy. Those business owners who don’t get good leads use this method to boost the sales and relevancy for the particular niche for the search engines.
Simple 5 Step Guest Posting Process:
- Go to Google and type your keywords and open 10-40 websites that you want to target to get a backlink.
- Always keep in mind that the sites must be relevant to your niche as well.
- Check if the websites offer guest posts or reach out to the webmaster to see if you can write for them.
- Always target the strong blogs with a decent Domain Authority (Moz) or Domain Ranking (Ahrefs) and that Google is already sending organic traffic to.
- Write a quality blog post with your website link it and send to the website owner for review and posting.
You want to write a persuasive and attention-grabbing pitch for the websites. Don’t forget to write a memorable and thumb-stopping title and think from a creative and unique angle. During your email outreach, don’t send the same email template to everyone. Always write the person’s name and site’s name in the email. Lastly, be yourself and don’t spam.
(2) Web 2.0 Links
Web 2.0 is a free blogging platform where you can create content, images, videos, and other files to create quality backlinks. Although digital marketers have abused this exciting technique by creating a flood of low-quality and low-value links But for SEO purposes, this technique is still worth considering and helps in SERPs if done in a low quantity, high quality type of way.
Some of the common examples of web 2.0 websites:
- Social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, etc.), podcast, and video-sharing websites such as YouTube and Vimeo.
Keep in mind that the link created on social media websites will often be a no-follow backlink. Generally, a no-follow link is not as valuable as a do-follow backlink as a do-follow backlink, but it can still help.
Now, the question arises, how to create a backlink on web 2.0 websites. First, you have to find a web 2.0 website and create a free account. While creating an account, don’t use the real business email; instead, use a different email. Create high-quality and unique content and insert some credible site links. Be careful while linking because many bloggers spam the whole content with links. Now add a link to your website in the content body. Remember, don’t over-promote the website and place the link naturally.
(3) Social Media Link Building
No one can deny the importance of social media when it comes to building backlinks. According to a report, more than 94% of the content on social media has no backlink. These social media websites have millions of active users, so there is a big potential in these sites when it comes to link building for your website.
For this purpose, you have to post your website’s content on your social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Social media also offers you to promote your website’s content in groups and pages. These groups and pages can be a huge source of deriving traffic from the targeted countries. Right now, many people are using Pinterest to generate traffic by creating a link on high-quality images.
Social media links are almost always no-follow, but they can still pass trust or enable you to pass certain thresholds in Google’s algorithm.
(4) SEO Press Release
SEO press releases offer a way of creating effective website backlinks online. This short text is for journalists to let them know about the company’s recent services or product launch. The purpose of the press release is to get media coverage by sharing newsworthy content online.
Press releases have been a decent way to get quality backlinks, especially in the past. From 2009 to 2019, bloggers exploited this field by creating spammy and low-quality press releases. So, now press releases don’t do as much and can actually be setup improperly to hurt your website.
You can create quality backlinks from a press release. First, don’t write a press release for SEO purposes instead; write it for announcement only. Put your link on the keyword naturally by avoiding keyword stuffing. Keep in mind that SEO values will appear only when publications pick a press release and convert it into an article. Now it’s time to pitch the story to the identified journalist and publishing it on some paid and free press release websites.
(5) Spammy Links
A spammy link or link spam happens when you place links on websites or pages without considering their relevancy, user experiences, and context. These links don’t offer any additional value in your ranking in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). All the search engines have clear guidelines, and therefore, you have to avoid link spam; otherwise, there will be some unintended consequences such as lowering the page visibility and even removal of a page from search results.
Popular types of spammy links
- Hidden Links
- Single post blogs
- Directory Spam
- Low-quality press release syndication
- Article marketing spam
- Linkbait and switch
- Forum spam
- Profile spam
- Comment spam
All these types have been very popular in the previous decade, but an expert doesn’t go for these ways for ranking purposes unless they are stuck in 5+ year old SEO techniques that no longer work.
(6) Blog Comments
Blog comment represents the backlinking strategy by building a strong relationship with the bloggers and readers in your industry. Most people don’t know the worth of this technique because if you do it correctly, it can contribute to a link building plan.
The reason for this confusion is that blog comments were once very powerful and you could, with an SEO tool, easily build thousands of them in short order and rank your website well. Then Google cracked down and these types of links lost favor among SEO experts…rightfully so! However, even no-follow blog comments can pass relevance, trust, and even traffic directly to your website, so getting a small amount of relevant blog comments on blogs that actually get traffic can help your SEO, but I wouldn’t rely on it exclusively or heavily.
Some people make mistakes while commenting on other’s blogs. For an effective blog commenting, always use your real name, don’t use fake or inactive emails, and write a comment that is 100% relevant to the topic. Moreover, always choose the email that is linked with Gravatar.
(7) Forum Links
Forum backlinking strategies were one of the widely used SEO strategies in the internet world. Notice that this is listed as a type of spammy link because it was over used as it actually worked really well many years ago…before Panda & Penguin.
Forums are divided into four main types, i.e., Q&A-based forums, traditional forums, social media groups, and private forums. Forums offer excellent opportunities to get a relevant and trusted backlink to your website…and also get some real traffic.
Here are the steps to follow to get a quality backlink from a forum:
- First of all, make a list of forums on a spreadsheet.
- Find forums that are relevant to your niche. Suppose you have a website on gaming, then your targeted forum should be related to gaming only.
- Always read the posts before sharing anything and then make an appropriate entry in the forums.
- Create a link on your focus keyword.
- You can also include no-follow backlinks as well.
- Forum links are created both on the home page and posts as well.
- Don’t use the same profile for multiple forums, as it will expose your keywords and niche.
Use this technique wisely by always going for the forums that are related to your niche. As with all link types, getting links from non-relevant websites usually doesn’t help and can sometimes hurt.
(8) Profile Links
Profile links were all the rage in 2012 before Penguin squashed them. Now, they fall under the link spam category, but can still be used in moderation.
When you use personal, professional, or business website links to your profiles on credible platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, then it is called profile linking.
A good profile backlink is always relevant and non-spammy. There are many benefits of getting a profile link, such as:
- As you are creating these links on free websites such as WordPress, Linked In, Facebook and Instagram, so there are no charges for profile links.
- There is no hidden science behind these links. Creating profile links is easy and convenient as well.
- You can generate real traffic for your website.
To create profile links, you just need to have a website or blog. You can link other pages instead of just the home page only. Always use something that appeals to the audience so that you might get the desired results.
(9) Article Submission Backlinks
Article submission is writing an article and publishing it on a third-party website. It was an effective off-page SEO strategy where you get a backlink to your website.
There was a time when you could rank a website with just article submission links. Ahh, the days in the sun for ezinearticles.com…
That said, like other types of backlinks that have fallen in disgrace, this can still be used in moderation if you can find a relevant and trusted article website. The article should be 100% relevant to your niche. Don’t submit the same article in the different directories. The article should be unique and to the point.
For an article submission backlink, you have to select a directory and register the account first. After the account creation, you’ll fill in the details such as keywords, tags, caption, time, and date. Write your article in the ‘body’ section of the page and click on submit.
(10) PBN Backlinks
Private Blogging Network (PBN) backlink is a powerful way to create backlinks for off-page SEO.
For example, if you own or control a website with a high link authority, you will may be able to pass a lot of link authority to your other money website. These websites are meant for linking purposes only. Many bloggers also sell PBN backlinks online to generate extra revenue. Although it has been criticized by many SEO experts, it still it works when used well because it offers a massive power boost (vs relevance and trust that you can get with a lot of other types of links).
PBN is, technically, gray hat, so there are some risks associated with it because a PBN is against Google’s Link Scheme Guideline, therefore Google might penalize your website or take strict action, but this is very rare.
If you are creating these links, make sure you get them from a credible person whose blog is not overloaded with the links. In many cases, these links work well and increase credibility too. There is a common myth that Google can easily identify these links. Well, this is not entirely true. If you create them wisely and don’t lean on this type of link too much, there is no such issue as ranking is concerned.
(11) Broken Link Building
A broken backlink is also known as ‘dead link’ or ‘link rot’. As the name suggests, these links are difficult to access by the user. This happens because of many reasons, such as the change in the Change in the URL structure, post deletion, and unavailability of the website. In case of a broken link, a user may see different types of errors such as 404 page not found, 400 bad request, bad host, and bad URL.
For every website, it is very important to find and fix these links. Here are some steps to help webmaster’s fix broken backlinks AND get a backlink to replace what they were linking to.
If you want to get a backlink from a website that is highly authoritative and relevant to your niche, one way is to check its broken backlinks. The next step is to contact the administrator and let him know that you have the exact same content on your website. You can write brand-new content for his broken link and add your link in the content body. This is one of the most effective and working ways to get ranked in the search engine.
(12) Editorial Backlinks
Editorial Backlinks are organic inbound links that a website owner creates voluntarily to promote their content. You can’t just copy these links or purchase them as website owners directly send them to you.
Suppose you want to publish a piece of work and mention a statistic published by any other website. In that case, you can use editorial backlinks to embed original content from any other website to yours. To acquire any editorial backlinks, you need to convince other web admins that your website is content-worthy. You can’t just make a flashy website and expect any editorial links to be given to you. You need to ensure that your content is sophisticated and worthy of the content link you’re targeting.
Editorial backlinks are essential to rank your content on any search engine. Editorial backlinks hold greater weight over your website’s search rankings than any other type of backlinks.
(13) Webinar Backlinks
The type of backlinks that leads people to any webinar held online for relevant information is called Webinar backlinks. Many people find webinars a comfortable way to gain knowledge. So, webinar backlinks can be a great way to raise audience engagement on your website.
One way to get webinar backlinks is uploading a valuable webinar while uploading content on your website. If the webinar you upload holds importance, many people will relate to it and link it while uploading their content. This is an excellent way to raise engagement for new websites and gain a relevant audience for famous websites.
Webinar backlinks are one of the ideal backlinks to feature on your website. It not only makes your content more appealing but also works well for search engine optimization. If you want to progress in the digital web industry, using webinar backlinks is one of the fastest ways.
(14) Document Sharing Backlinks
Document-sharing websites are a great way to raise traffic on your website. Generally, these websites have high traffic, some of which you can cut off for your website. Don’t worry; it is not illegal as you’ll not be click-baiting any of your visitors but providing them with detailed information.
Also, Google Docs is a document sharing website owned by Google, so they tend to look favorably upon those who use their own platform.
You need to compose a document that is related to the content available on your website. Never share the complete details but write an engaging piece of the full information on your website. Later on, you can link your website in the document so users can visit it for complete detailed information.
Document-sharing backlinks are a quick and easy way to gain traffic according to the niche of your website.
(15) Gov Backlinks
If you successfully get a Gov backlink, you will have your content mentioned and your website referred on a government website via hyperlink or a direct URL (address of your website).
Before actually trying to get a mention from a government website; bear in mind that;
- Gov backlinks are widely regarded as the “Holy Grail”, which implies that they’re incredibly hard to acquire.
- A mention from the Gov website is indeed a valuable asset for SEO boosting. Yet, you can’t rule out the other tactics of content marketing alongside the Gov backlinks, i.e., You can’t solely rely on them for an impressive SEO.
- You can’t just have casually built or generated backlinks with the Gov domain. You need to prove your worth through your content to earn it.
(16) Edu Backlinks
Just as the Gov backlinks, the Edu backlinks are another impressive SEO strategy for content marketing and optimization. Simply putting, Edu backlinks are a mention or reference from an Edu domain to your website. The reference can be in the form of a hyperlink, anchor text, or a complete URL address.
Having a mention on the Edu domain means that your content has been validated and referred by a respectable and authoritative site on the search engine. However, when building the Edu backlinks, be sure to find the trusted Edu domains. You can utilize Google’s advanced search option to find effective Edu sites.
Simply search “site:.edu” on google, and all the authentic Edu domains will appear on the results. You can further narrow down the results by mentioning the niche of the Edu website you want to build a backlink in.
(17) Business Citation Links
These are commonly used for ranking in Google’s Local SEO or Maps search results.
They are an important factor because you do need at least some good ones to rank in Maps, but don’t overdo these links because there is a diminishing returns.
Furthermore, the best citations are on niche or location relevant websites, so keep an eye out for business citation directories targeting your area or your specific business.
Final Backlink Types Thoughts
Some types of links are not helpful nowadays because of the constant algorithm update by the search engine. Some links offer high power and less trust, while the others offer high trust and less power.
Backlinking is a complete science. With time, there have been numerous changes in backlinking strategies. Always go for valid and credible ways to link your website and generate traffic. Some cheap options might lead to disaster.
Furthermore, you cannot fully rely on any one type of backlink to be successful with SEO, so make sure to vary up the different types of backlinks.
If you are not sure what to do with this information, contact me for a free SEO analysis and recommendations