Why Backlinks to Your Website is Key to SEO and Lead Generation

Link building

Backlink building is an essential element of every successful SEO strategy. It describes the process of acquiring backlinks from other websites and directing traffic from their content to yours.

So what are backlinks?

Backlinks are links on one website that point to another website. Also called external or inbound links, they add credibility to the referred site. In fact, search engines like Google consider backlinks to be an important signal when evaluating website value and ranking its content. That’s why effective digital marketing programs include SEO functions such as link building. Pages with lots of backlinks often rank higher on Google. Especially if the backlinks are from trusted, authoritative sources.

Quality links that support SEO

As we know, search engines such as Google use backlinks as a measure of value—they show an author thought your site offered important supplementary information that was better than anyone else’s. So, the more quality sites that link to your website, the higher its SEO authority. Search-engine crawlers also use backlinks to move around the web and discover new pages.

Google, in particular, has long used links as a ranking factor, measuring a page’s quality by the number of external links pointing to it. This led to some unscrupulous link-building activity back in the early days of the internet that subsequently forced the search giant to tighten the rules surrounding backlinks.

The quality of the website linking to your own determines how much of an SEO boost a backlink will earn you. The best-quality links come from trusted sites with high authority, such as news outlets and Fortune 500 companies. Forbes, TechCrunch and The Huffington Post carry a lot of weight when it comes to SEO rankings. A link from these trusted sources shows Google your content is among of the best.

The wrong kind of backlinks

If links are so important, why not just pay a bunch of links? Or what about responding to those link exchange emails, in which they link to your site if you link to theirs? These practices are intended to manipulate rankings in your favour, but these spammy backlinks can do the opposite. Google may penalize your content as a result.

Deceptive tricks to stay away from include buying backlinks in bundles from websites that are set up purely to link (this is called link-farming) and spamming forum discussions with irrelevant links. Also, always avoid opting in to spammy backlinks from spammy sites.

By contrast, good techniques cultivate organic and authentic links that are helpful and relevant to the people clicking them.

How to get great backlinks to your website

There are a number of ways to encourage high-authority websites to link to yours.

Create quality content

First and foremost, create content that people want to share. Well-written articles that provide a comprehensive consideration of a topic are a good start. Enrich it with study results, illustrations, diagrams and videos and now you’ve got a strong reference source to which others are more likely to link. Examples include helpful how-to’s, entertaining reviews, research study articles and one-of-a-kind analysis.

Submit media releases

A press release can work wonders for securing backlinks from high-authority news outlets, providing you have something to say. Pitch your quality content idea to the press, targeting journalists who have previously covered similar topics. For B2C brands, this might be an introduction to an innovative new product; for those targeting B2B writers, new, insightful industry data will often generate a buzz.

Write guest posts

Sometimes it makes sense for a website to feature a guest post authored by a related industry expert or collaborator. The purpose can be to share joint research and case studies—unique and informative content that is useful to the website visitors. Naturally, the post would include backlinks to the author’s business websites. It’s important to note that Google recommends using nofollow links in this situation so the value is not directly impacting search ranking. Rather, if people share the content and link to it as a resource, you can benefit from brand exposure and increased website traffic. If these visitors stick around and engage with your content, that can also help improve your SEO authority.

Social influencers

Influencer marketing is a growing field, and for good reason. These influencers are individuals with large social-media followings or an influential blog. A backlink from an influencer that is relevant to your brand and shares a similar audience could offer a serious boost in brand awareness and organic traffic. And, similarly to guest posts, if people click through to visit your website and explore your other content, this can support your SEO goals.

The many benefits of quality backlinks

Backlinking has the power to increase search engine ranking and website authority. It is crucial to search engine marketing (SEM) and is a cornerstone of all good off-page SEO strategies.

Backlinking also supports wider content marketing objectives. Articles that include links to your content can drive more traffic to your website. Users that click through may develop into customers or share your content with their social network, further increasing brand awareness and sales potential.

So, yes, the ongoing investment to doing backlinks and SEO right is worth the effort! It involves both strategically creating original, engaging content that can attract quality backlinks and then actively encouraging relevant links and shares from quality sites. Your business benefits from increased brand awareness, more website visits by people interested in your expertise and higher brand authority.