Aiming for your website/blog to rank among the top few search results? You’re not the only one. There is a limited number of results on the first search engine results page – 10 to be precise. On top of that, Google and other major search engines frequently change their algorithms, therefore making it necessary for the website owners to continuously refine their SEO strategy.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the online visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine’s unpaid results—often referred to as “natural”, “organic”, or “earned” results1. Several factors like keywords, content, meta tags, anchor text, and backlinks impact search engine rank and can help you achieve higher website traffic. Discussing each parameter is beyond the scope of one article, so we will focus on backlinks and how they contribute to a good SEO strategy.
What are backlinks?
A “backlink” is a link from an external website to your site. Until a few years ago, backlinks were the most important factor for search engine results page (SERP) ranking of your website. However, post the recent Google algorithm updates, including Penguin, the significance of backlinks has reduced considerably.
Importance of relevant backlinks
Backlinks can help improve your SEO rankings only if they are of high quality. For example, for a photography blog, a backlink from a photography institute website is relevant whereas a backlink from a site selling furniture can adversely impact the SEO rankings. Do not get backlinks from spam sites, harvested sites or paid sites – purchasing hundreds of backlinks will not improve your SERP ranking overnight. Moreover, Google places greater emphasis on links from high-domain authority sites related to your business.
How to get relevant backlinks
1. Create top-quality content that is relevant to your target audience. This will increase the number of followers, who will share your content on social media channels.
2. Write guest blogs on top forums/blogs.
3. Find influencers in your domain and ask them to review your products on their site.
4. Leverage Q&A sites like Quora, Stack exchange to generate traffic to your website. Commenting on such sites will also help you engage with your prospective customers and increase brand awareness.
5. Review backlinks of your competitors using tools like SEMRUSH, Ahrefs, Open Site Explorer and Open Link Profiler. This information can help you fine-tune your SEO strategy.
Using the right backlinks in your overall SEO strategy can produce phenomenal results for your organisation. Stick to the basics and do not try to outsmart the search engines by deviating from the set guidelines. With the right steps, you will soon see the desired effect.