Building quality backlinks is one of the most effective ways to improve your website’s visibility on major search engines. The amount of quality backlinks are a strong indication of the popularity of your website and Google and Bing credit websites that have many. What are high quality backlinks as oppose to low quality backlinks? Not all backlinks are created equal and it is often difficult to determine the difference between a good and bad link. However, the Google Penguin Update launched in 2012, started punishing webpages that had been spamming Google. Google created a list of specific quality guidelines that, if followed correctly should ensure that you are not creating harmful links.

A strong backlink profile can have a positive impact on your search visibility, while a sketchy list of referrers can be detrimental. The tips below are simple yet consummate ways to tell if your current backlinks are good quality and how to get more of them.

3 Ways to Tell if your Backlinks are High Quality

Keep in mind that backlinks do not need to have each one of these tips to be considered high quality – two of them will do. And, if you can get all three (or any more attributes that influence a links value), I can pretty much assure you that the link to your website is definitely one worth keeping.

In Content Backlinks

In content backlinks, are often valued highly by search engines. Links that are included in natural or relevant content are often assumed to be legitimate and the search engine assumes that the author of that content considers the link important. For example; backlinks in well-written, relevant content are viewed as higher quality by Google and Bing than backlinks in content that is not relevant and/or placed sporadically or nonsensically on the page.

From a Relevant Source

Search engines evaluate a website’s relevance when they are analyzing the quality of their backlinks. They consider many factors when determining the relevance of the site, most importantly, determining the value of the content surrounding the anchor tag. High value is placed on links that come from a source relevant to your website and Google and Bing pay close attention to the relevancy between a webpage and its links. Backlinks from relevant sources are also reliable as they provide opportunity to target your potential visitors.

From a Trusted Source

Trusted backlinks are ones that come from a trusted source. A trusted source meaning, “an official website, a government website, a school website or, a website that has been around for a long time.” Search Engines can easily differentiate spammy websites versus trusted ones. They can tell when a website has been built specifically for paid backlinking. Therefore, when determining high quality backlinks versus low quality ones, links from well known legitimate websites are ‘keepers’.
There are many proper techniques that you can use to get quality backlinks to your site. Having interesting, well written content is often the first step to organically build these links, as users will be inclined to share or link to your website. Backlinks have become one of the main building blocks of SEO therefore, ensuring that your backlinks are good quality, in combination with many other SEO techniques is a great way to drive relevant traffic to your businesses’ website.

3 Ways to Build Quality Backlinks

Producing quality content is the first step to natural link building. If you write great content, people will be more inclined to talk about it and share it. Spend time and effort on quality content as this will naturally encourage people to link to you. Keep in mind that even one quality post can gain many links to your website.

Social Sharing Sites

Social sharing sites are a great place to begin sharing your quality content and building backlinks. Websites such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook are some of the most visited sites in the world and are the perfect place for you to gain brand recognition. Getting people to see and know your content & brand is an important part of link building and it is important to post strategically to get your content in front of the right people.

Developing a strong social presence suggests to Google that your content is useful and share worthy. However, this is only the case if your comments, question and answer responses and website links add value to the readers. Posting content on Tumblr, Blogger and Google+ are all great places to comment and share links to your articles (if they add value) or links to other articles (if they also add value).

Further, many social networking sites allow you to add links to your website and any other websites in your bio.  Although linking back to your site from social media sites can drive traffic and benefit users, they are not all necessarily beneficial to SEO because of the nofollow rule that is on most social networks.

Relationships with Relevant Sites

Building genuine relationships with relevant businesses can increase links to your website. Local meet ups, linking to someone else’s content and chatting via social media are all ways to build online relationships. Google hangouts, twitter conversations and honestly answering people’s online questions also present the opportunity to link build. Don’t forget: use already established industry relationships to ask for links and return the favour – just ensure that the content aligns.

Guest Blogging

Guest blogging to build backlinks is tricky and can be viewed as spammy. However, if done correctly (see above), it is a great wait to build links to your website. In order to ensure that you are guest blogging to properly improve your rankings and increase traffic to your site,  I recommend:

  • Guest blog quality content only.
  • Guest blog for relevant and reputable websites.
  • Guest blog links to other websites along with your own if the reader will benefit. ADD VALUE!
  • Guest blog strategically to become a trusted online author.

Guest blogging (if done honestly) is a great way to build quality links to your website, from trusted sites. Further, guest blogging improves SEO, incoming traffic flow and lead generation.

There are many ways to build and decipher quality backlinks. However, keep in mind that Google and Bing are smart and you should in no way, shape or form try to fool them. Building quality backlinks the right way plays a big part in your success (or failure) on search engines. Writing engaging, value added content and consistently monitoring the quality of your backlinks will help to give your website the upper hand.

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