A digital commerce expert and the co-founder at Kinex Media Inc, a creative digital agency in Toronto.
Simply stated, backlinks are connections with other websites; they are links to your website from other websites. For example, online citations are backlinks.
The purpose of backlinks is to help people and search engines judge the value of your site. If someone clicks on the link to your website that they found on another site, search engines consider that and increase your website’s authority.
So, how can you create these powerful connections with other websites?
Tips On Getting Backlinks
For backlinks to be most effective, they have to be high-quality and relevant. For example, aim to get backlinks on websites that search engines will find hard to ignore. Wikipedia articles are one example; search engines often show these at the top of search results. Of course, the link must be nonadvertising and helpful to readers. Wikipedia is available in many languages, so no problem for non-English websites.
Here are some tips on getting backlinks on other websites:
• Make infographics that you can easily share with other websites.
• Write articles and guest posts for reputable websites like HubSpot, Mashable and Business Insider. Many websites invite posts on specific topics that may be within your business’s area of expertise.
• Share articles, blog posts and updates about your products and services on social media.
• Advertise on news and magazine sites.
To keep your connections up-to-date, be sure to check your backlinks regularly and make sure they’re working. Use SEO tools like Dead Link Checker to find broken backlinks. Contact the website owners by email or phone, tell them about the broken links and ask them to fix them.
Link Back To Sites That Link To Yours
To give your backlinks a boost, be sure to link back to sites that link to yours. One way to do this that I’ve found helpful is including such links in your Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, etc. Just make sure that they are public and discoverable by anyone.
Ensure That Your Backlinks Are Indexed
In the process of creating backlinks, some never affix, meaning they aren’t indexed by search engines. Just as you want your website to be crawlable by search engines, you also want your backlinks to be.
I recommend using SEO tools like Ahrefs and Ubersuggest, whose crawlers track quality links, to give search engines the idea to index the backlinks they index. Learning about the status and authority of your backlinks from these tools also gives you confidence in those links. Links have a history — some of them are no-follow, which may change after some time. Monitoring them with SEO tools helps you understand how they are helping your website. A sound change in a backlink’s authority can do the same for your site.
Seeing Good Results
The real challenge with backlinks is getting backlinks with a high chance of faster indexing. If you are starting fresh, then aim for the highest quality backlinks. Make authentic and quality connections, and nurture them. For example, if an article on a news website includes a backlink to your website, share it to help generate even more traffic. If your website has lots of backlinks, make sure that all of them are functioning. If they lose value over time, remove them yourself, request that the website owners remove them or disavow them in Google Search Console. Low-quality backlinks can hurt your website’s search engine rankings. Good quality backlinks are hard, but not impossible, to get.
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