Most bloggers and content marketers will come across the topic of backlinks. Let’s jump into what there are and how they can increase your revenue.
What Are Backlinks?
If your product or service has a website or creates content on a blog, the concept of backlinks must have come up at some point.
Your social media manager or SEO consultant might keep talking about getting backlinks. Or maybe you've stumbled on the concept through your research on how to grow your traffic.
But What Are They?
Backlinks are when another website adds a link to your website or blog post on their site.
Backlinks are also known as incoming links or inbound links. You would usually see these as hyperlinks on a website referring to the page they are linking. If you place a link on your site, these are called “external links” or “outbound links.”
What we - and everyone else on the internet, for that matter - want are as many inbound links as we can muster.
Why Are Backlinks Important?
Google’s objective is to help their customers (people who search the web using google) find the most accurate and relevant answers to their questions. There are over 600 million blogs, with 31 million blog posts created daily in America alone. Each blog post topic is in an epic battle royale for the top spot of the SERPs (Search Engine Results Page).
Google determines which piece of content deserves the top spot by using somewhere around 200 factors in their algorithm. This algorithm changes often, but backlinks always remain as one of the Top Ranking Factors.
Why? Because word of mouth is still the most potent form of marketing around.
For example, if you need to see a chiropractor and you ask a friend for help. That friend refers you to a doctor,and you visit the doctor. That’s word of mouth.
Backlinksare word of mouth at scale.
Let’s say you own a vegan, Indian food restaurant. If a popular flood blogger writes about Indian food, he can create a link on his post while talking about your business. The link helps his readers by directing them to what they need. And helps you get business.
Backlinks are a great validation tool. You can say you’re the best in your field. You can create great pieces of content to back that up. But when hundreds of people link to your content, you know that it’s real.
What Are The Benefits Of Backlinks?
Search Engine Optimization specialists obsess over backlinks because they know that links are critical for a successful Content Marketing strategy. Backlinks are also challenging to acquire. According to a study from Ahrefs,only 30% of websites have backlinks. When you do start acquiring backlinks, you gain the following benefits:
1. More Traffic:
Since backlinks affect rankings, backlinks to your site or content means more persons trust what you have to say. Google will reward your content with a higher ranking. Since xx% of searchers don’t go past page 1,this will do wonders for your business if you end up on that page. You get to see the results of your blogging or business efforts.
2. More Traffic = More Revenue:
Remember, Google rewards backlinks with more traffic. People using Google have an intent to buy. That increase in traffic means more leads and more income. That’s why some businesses spend thousands on content creation.
Once it stays up-to-date and ranking, one great piece of content can earn the business tens of thousands in return.
3. You Become An Authority:
Persons who dominate the search rankings due to high backlinks and content are known as the best in their field. Speaking of backlinks, Backlinko isone of the top-rated websites for everything SEO and link building.
If you were to search, ‘what are backlinks,’ Backlinko would be ranked #1 (with Moz and Ahrefs worthy runners-up). Businesses won’t hesitate to use reputable companies who linked to them for social proof on their websites.
4. Backlinks help build relationships: If you can both give and receive links, it’s the start of a win-win relationship that can help for years to come. Think collaborations, affiliate opportunities, media shout outs, and other revenue benefits that can last for years to come.
All Backlinks Aren’t Created Equal
So backlinks can bring more traffic,more notoriety, and more revenue. That does not mean businesses should start getting backlinks wherever and whenever possible. All backlinks are not created equal. Poor backlinks can have the opposite effect, making Google not acknowledge your site at all. For a backlink to make sense, there are three major factors involved:
1. The linking website must have a high authority: Let’s say you write a book, and your best friend goes online and publishes content about your new work. While you’re happy that they helped, they may not have a high authority on the book topic or books for that matter.
If Oprah, on the other hand, sends a link out to your book, that’s a game-changer. The website that’s linking to you must be reputable.
While there’s no way to determine that from Google, there are several tools like Uber suggest, Moz, and Ahrefs that rank websites. They use a formula to give sites a Domain Authority out of 100. A website with a DA of 85 is more valuable than a new site with a DA of 15.
2. The link must be relevant: High authority is one thing, but the context must make sense. Taking the food blogger example, if that food blogger links your site,but you sell RVs, that helps neither the reader nor your website.
Google’s algorithm can now consider this, using factors like anchor text, to determine relevance. With that in mind, a more relevant site with a lower authority can improve your search results if they link to you. So if you’re going to start building backlinks, make sure to consider this.
3. The link must have high quality: Links are broken up into ‘do follow’ and ‘no follow.’ Websites need do follow links to build backlinks. These are the relevant links that will come from high-quality sites. No follow links are related to social media comments, blog comments, etc.
4. You must get multiple links from multiple sources: If Oprah talks about you once, that’s great. But if she talks about you every week, people will eventually start to tune her out. Backlinks work the same way. If you’re getting hundreds of links from one site, Google will suspect something.
In other words, the more websites that link to your content, the better.
How To Start Building Backlinks
So there’s immense value in getting backlinks from other websites. However, link building can be a tough task. Yet,there are a few ways to start building links to your site. Over time, this can increase your traffic and revenue. Here’s how to start:
1. Create the best piece of content you can: Most of Search Engine Optimization is down to which website or business can create the best piece of content possible. Check the top-ranking content, look for ways to improve that content.
Include private research, surveys, videos, images, and resources that the reader needs. You’ll start earning backlinks this way as more people will trust your content. Unfortunately, you can’t rely on this method as it will bring minimal results.
2. Look at your links. And see who is linking to your competitors: Google Search Console can help you see where your links are coming from. Then use a tool like Ahrefs or SEMRush to find out which websites link to your top competitors. Then you can get an idea of similar websites you need to target and whom you need to reach out.
3. Share your content: Content creating is only one part of Content Marketing. You can’t build your content and hope people will come to it. You must use different methods to distribute the material.
More importantly, the content needs distribution in front of the right audience. Distribution increases the chances of someone else sharing it on their websites.
4. Start building rapport: Look for some ways you can help verticals in your niche and start reaching out to them. It could be as simple as sharing one of their blogs on your site. Let them know how much it helped your clients. Once you genuinely do that and start engaging, you can eventually ask for a link to a relevant piece of content.
5. Guest posting and interviews: Look for relevant sites that accept guest posts and connect with the owner to submit a post. Guest posts can get you a link and save the owner the trouble of creating the content.
Another excellent method is to create a podcast or interview thought leaders for a write-up. These people will be more likely to share the content on their websites.
Ready To Start Linking?
Backlinks may seem trivial, but they are a powerful tool.
These links help your business develop authority, build your brand, and improve your traffic. There are many tools and agencies out there that use hacks and black hat techniques to build links.
Yes, some may bring some short term benefits. However, nothing will beat great content and great relationships in the long run.
Make backlink building a part of your marketing strategy today. My team is happy to help should you need someone to guide you through the process.
May 16, 2021
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