Link building is a vital part of driving organic traffic to your website and blogs, and adopting strong link building strategies will help strengthen your SEO foundation. With great link building comes great marketing.
What exactly is link building? Link building is the process of acquiring links from other websites to our own and hyperlinking them in our content, which will help users navigate through different pages on the website. The more reliable the hyperlinks on your website are, the better your website will rank.
What does Google do with the backlinks in a website? Google uses backlinks to index websites.
Backlinks and their types
Simply put, backlinks are just like citations in a thesis. They are links that literally link one website to another, and hence, the more relevant they are, the better it is for the website’s SEO to perform well.
Not all backlinks are the same. Most of your link building strategy relies on the type of link you choose for your website/content. Therefore, it is important to understand the different kinds of backlinks available and wisely choose what would fit your content and SEO needs and strategy the best.
Links can be easily identified upon reading the URL of the site you are being linked to, for most of them carry the kind of link they are within the URL itself.
1. NoFollow links:
Agreed that links vouch for trusted sources, but sometimes, we would not want to vouch for a site but still link it. These links are NoFollow links, and even though these links don’t pass the PageRank, Google announced in 2019 that it would treat all link attributes as hints whether to consider or exclude them. The attribute for NoFollow links is rel=”nofollow”.
2. DoFollow links
A DoFollow link is a link that seamlessly passes Google’s PageRank. These links do not have a “follow” attribute and, therefore, don’t have a unique attribute.
3. Sponsored link (Paid links)
Sometimes, you might pay a blogger in exchange for the promotion of a blog or a product review. Google must be informed if money has been involved in exchange for a link. These links are called sponsored links or paid links and use the attribute – rel=”sponsored”.
4. High Authority Links
High Authority backlinks are links that are from highly trusted sources. For example, a well-reputed news platform or a well-established website. High Authority links are highly credible and majorly help your website rank better.
5. UGC links
UGC links or User Generated Content links rolled out in 2019 are links that are sourced from comments on blogs and other public forums like Quora and more. This type of link uses the attribute rel=”ugc”, informing Google that the link has been generated from a user and not the webmaster.
6. Toxic Links
Links that are wrong and irrelevant can affect your website’s future as well as current rankings. These bad links are also called toxic or unnatural links. These links are of low quality, from suspicious sites, and may even be links that violate Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and appear manipulative of Search Engine Results.
7. Editorially placed links
An editorially placed link is a link that the webmaster himself has authorised. Editorial links mainly comprise links that lead to other websites, and these links are placed editorially because the webmaster feels that the sites deserve the traffic that is being sent. Google places the highest authority on those links that are editorially placed, for they are in most cases vouched for by the site’s owner.
How does link building help SEO?
If you are looking to rank your website on Google, then link building is inevitable. You have to have a solid link-building strategy in place for you to acquire high-quality links. Link building is a time-consuming process, but for your SEO to work, it is essential to look to effectively provide good quality links in your website content.
Backlinks are vital for they bring results to the table for you when done right. Do your research and formulate a good link building strategy and reap the maximum potential of the benefits it comes bearing.
Here’s how link building helps in SEO:
- They help you rank higher on Google and other search engines
- They help enhance your business’ credibility
- They help Google find and index your page faster
- They help your page receive more significant referral traffic
How does link building help your business?
Are you a business owner wondering what will help in increasing traffic on your website? The answer lies in your link building strategies. The link-building process helps your business to a great extent, for all the reasons it helps your SEO and more.
Google is generally the primary source of traffic to your company’s website. The better the SEO on your website, the better your Google ranking and subsequently, the more traffic to your site. This is why standing well on Google is extremely important.
Find a good SEO specialist to do the job for you effectively, and once your website ranks on Google’s first page (that’s the aim!), you will be able to see the resultant increase in customers and queries.
But for Google to rank your website on its first page, link building is an essential strategy you should put to use. High-quality links make your page trustworthy and come across as authoritative. This will enable Google to choose your page for its first page in the SERP. It is usual user behaviour to go for links on Google’s first page.
If you, as a business, can get your link building strategy right, then your website will become more discoverable, driving more traffic and thereby increasing your customer base.
Tips for effective link building
Link building, in 2021, has come a long way, and webmasters are constantly looking for ways that will sharpen their link building strategies. The main key to building links lies in making sure you don’t use broken links, as these links do not let Google crawl into your pages. Sure, you can experiment with the different types of links available, but it is best to always see to it that you use authoritative and reliable links.
A few tips for effective link building in 2021 include:
- Use contextual links: A contextual link is a link found within the content of your site. These links are made to stand out by giving them a unique colour and font, which will make them look clickable and drive readers to click through the links. These links have to be of the highest quality and authority for them to pass through the PageRank.
- Take up guest blogging seriously: Guest blogging is one of the oldest ways to effective link building. The process is as simple as writing a blog article for another website or blog and linking yourself from it – where the author’s bio is given. You don’t have to approach pages that are looking for guest posts necessarily. You can even pitch to blogging sites and websites, as generally, they are open to accepting guest blogs.
- Unlinked mentions: Sometimes, blogs mention sites without necessarily linking them- i.e., there won’t be a clickable mention which will lead the reader to the referred site. The site that is being mentioned, unlinked, is at an advantage, as they can approach the author directly, requesting them to convert the mention to a linked one. It’s a win-win for both parties – the link will help them pass the PageRank, while the mentioned site will earn more authority and credibility.
- Have more DoFollow links on your page: The type of link that works the best is the DoFollow link. Not all links pass the PageRank, and using the wrong mix of links can affect your Google rankings majorly. NoFollow links hint Google that it should not crawl them, while sponsored links indicate that they are paid for and eventually affect the PageRank.
- Add topical links: Relevance is another factor that helps link building the most. When you build links for your site, make sure they are highly relevant to your page’s content. Relevance will only improve the links’ authority, thereby letting Google know that you have built the right links on your site and enabling it to crawl your site. They also help your website rank better.
- Use the advantage of broken links: The process, also known as broken link building, involves just three simple steps –
- Identify relevant broken links on the web
- Create content similar to that on the broken link
- Approach the source using the broken link and request them to link your site with the relevant content instead.
There are a galore of ways in which you can effectively build links. The end goal is to make sure that the built links are of the best quality and that they are trustable. Most of the issue in link building is sorted when you refrain from using broken or toxic links, which will deter your rank on Google and affect your site’s credibility. To excel in SEO, having a great link building strategy in place is the best way to go!
Karthik Maruthai is an SEO expert and a trainer at Digital Scholar. He has more than 10 years of rich industry experience and has trained a number of students in the field of SEO and WordPress. Digital Scholar provides a 3-months extended digital marketing course for passionate Digital Marketers.