What Are Backlinks in SEO?

Backlinks are an integral component of any SEO campaign, as search engines rely on them to rank web pages based on authority and evaluate relevance for specific queries. If your page about hedgehogs receives 500 backlinks while one on hedgehogs from your competitor has only three, Google may deem your page the more pertinent resource.

Backlinking is unquestionably one of the most critical strategies for increasing visibility in SERPs (search engine results pages), often considered the cornerstone of any successful SEO strategy. Without quality backlinks, even on-page optimization will remain ineffective.

When analyzing the backlinks of yourself or competitors, it is essential to take the context of each link into account. This includes both its text – its anchor text – and where it links; this ensures natural linking that will bolster the reputation of your business and build up trust between yourself and consumers. Avoiding links from spammy sites that use link schemes (including PBNs (private blog networks), paid links, and low quality directory links).

Link building should also be highly relevant to your website and business, in order to pass more relevance signals to search engines and achieve higher SERP rankings. If you specialize in an area, getting links from other experts on that same topic could serve as mutual endorsement and help everyone involved.

One way of assessing whether or not a backlink is relevant is to analyze its linking page’s keyword. An ideal way of doing this is using Moz Toolbar’s Blue Keyword feature which displays whether or not your keyword appears within its URL, while checking Google Search Console could also show whether they appear organically in search results.

To increase the value of your backlinks, focus on getting links from high-quality publications and social media accounts. Also ensure your content provides something useful or valuable to readers of said publications; this increases your chance of securing editorial links, which are more valuable than non-editorial ones.

Backlinks are by far the most influential ranking factor in Google’s search algorithm, especially the “authority” portion of their E-E-A-T criteria, which measures whether third-party publications recognize your source as authoritative. Gaining backlinks from high-quality websites is the easiest way to boost authority and increase search engine rankings; creating and publishing educational content like infographics, white papers, or blogs can all provide opportunities to earn editorial backlinks and boost your authority further.

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