Backlinks- what makes a really good quality backlink?

Backlinks- what makes a really good quality backlink?

February 13, 2024

 

When you read many blog posts, relating to SEO they always advise you to build “high-quality backlinks” for your business.

This can help individual pages and sometimes your whole website to lift within Google’s organic ranks- also called the “SERPs”.

Therefore, backlinks, although time-consuming and can be complicated to build, can sometimes help to greatly improve your company’s organic SEO. This means that links if built correctly can help your business can appear higher on Google.

 

Written by: Ryan Walsh

Date: 13/02/2024

 

Link Building, Off Page SEO

 

The search engines, for example, Google.com and Google.co.uk, will typically rank businesses on their first page results if they have a lot of quality backlinks (do-follow & no-follow).

However, determining link quality and whether a link is bad or good, often requires a highly experienced SEO consultant to make that decision.

Sure, there are a million and one SEO backlink-checking tools that can be used, and these are needed to build links. However, a determination still needs to be made as to whether the SEO consultant should build the backlink and whether it should be added to the backlink profile.

 

The consultant will therefore need to ask themselves:

 

– Is the link relevant?

– Is it high quality?

– Will this help the business to improve its Google E-EAT score?

By the end of this article, you will be equipped with a much better understanding of why building high-quality, relevant backlinks is absolutely essential when improving a business’s search engine optimisation.

As we would say, it’s tough to get any company ranked in the top 3 positions of Google.co.uk SERPs without having first built many high-quality backlinks.

 

The backlinks therefore need to be:

– Built-in a completely white hat way

– Be relevant to the business

– Have a mixture of do-follow and no-follow backlinks

– Be from high-quality businesses

– Anchor text also must be written in a white hat way

 

So, what exactly is a backlink?

A backlink is simply an inbound link when it comes from another website (external backlink) and is linked a page or blog post on your website.

So this is very different from an internal backlink, which is merely a link from one blog post or page on the same website. It is also best to have backlinks from high-domain authority websites; some SEO tools refer to this as the link having high (DA).

 

Quality backlinks, built without you asking

So, let’s say your business writes a really detailed 3,000-word blog post. Let’s say an expert within your company writes the article- and takes over a week writing it, so its top quality. This means the written work will have a high Google EEAT score. So the information is valuable, helpful and well-written.

This work might have been published over one year ago and now may have had thousands of visitors read through the article. During this time, the work might have earned many backlinks.

Therefore, content marketing can obtain quality do-follow backlinks without the business evening having to do outreach work to build backlinks. That’s if the work is super high quality and has a very good Google E-EAT score.

 

Naturally written

So, let’s look at the type of backlinks that your business needs. You will want high-quality backlinks, but you will also want the links to be naturally written into a blog post or page- what do we mean by that? (editorial backlinks)

Well, let’s say a business is offering helpful advice via a blog post; it’s a long and really detailed article. Yet, without you asking a business, so you don’t do outreach, that’s asking the business to add a link, the business instead spots you’ve written a brilliant article.

The author of the work sees you’ve written a brilliant blog post. Let’s say it was some research you carried out by asking 1,000 people what they thought on a haircare product; and the business wants to include your statistics in their article. Therefore, you obtain a backlink.

Yet the backlink is likely to be written naturally. So what we mean by that is if the author of the work, who is writing an article cites your research, that you have found people spent lets say 75 pound a month on hair care products. The link is likely to be written within the text, and it may have anchor text such as: “average spend on haircare products per month”.

So this helps the author, as they included your survey, to help make their blog post even more detailed for their readers. Your business benefits as you have obtained a backlink, and the link appears within the text as an editorial link, so the anchor text is more naturally written.

 

A quality website that doesn’t dish out backlinks by the bucket load!

The best backlinks are quality links from a quality website that doesn’t issue links to just any business. Take the BBC, they don’t include many external links within their pages, yet when they do, it’s added to help the reader. For example, a brand new British start-up business, manufacturing car batteries may get a link. As they will be a major employer, manufacturing a quality British product. So these links, backlinks that will help the reader, are the backlinks you want.

Therefore, the best backlinks are from businesses that carefully think about the links they add to their website. They don’t issue links for money. Instead, they write good quality articles with very high Google EEAT scores and link to your website because they think your work will interest their readers.

Avoid like the plague websites, which offer links for a fee, avoid getting links from spammy directories, or “link farms”. Backlinks from these websites will get your business a penalty.

Therefore, you want unique, perhaps just one backlink from a high-quality website such as from The Guardian newspaper.

One single link from, say, the BBC is much more powerful and beneficial to your SEO than 100 links from a spammy directory websites.

The BBC link will help to move your company up Google’s SERPs (search engine results pages).

Low-quality backlinks, on the other hand, from, say, spammy directories, may result in a Google manual action or an algorithmic penalty being imposed on your website.

 

How many words are on the page:

The last thing you want is for Googlebot to crawl and index a mass of backlinks from pages with a very low word count. SEO consultants often refer to these pages as being “content-thin”.

Googlebot and then Google’s algorithms will likely deem these pages as spam, that’s if they don’t offer much helpful information. For example, it’s difficult to answer questions in just 300 words.

So, if most of the backlinks come from websites where the link is mentioned on a page and has a low word count, this could be a clear sign the page is spam and was only really created possibly to send links.

As these pages hold no real value to the reader, the search engines, such as Google, are likely to deem the page spam, so you don’t want backlinks from these websites.

Spam backlinks will result in your business incurring a Google Penguin Penalty.

 

Why the anchor text needs to be written in a natural way

For those who do not know, the anchor text on your website is simply the text you click on to follow the link.
Therefore, if you’re selling running trainers, you might wish to write the anchor text as simply: “Nike running trainers”- if that’s what your company is selling.

With that said, it’s essential to write the anchor text naturally; what we mean by that is to write the text so that it informs the shopper exactly what that page is selling.

You might wish to write quite a wordy description. This will help the shopper to know what product is being sold, and the search engines, such as Google will have a better idea of what that page is selling.

 

Generic Anchor Text

SEO consultants refer to as generic anchor text as anchor text that’s written, for example, to say “click here” or “buy now”. This is what SCO consultants refer to as generic anchor text.

Exact Match Anchor Text

So, what you don’t want is to overuse on your website is “exact match anchor text”.

If you’re wondering what “exact match anchor text” is, its simply keywords written into the anchor text with an aim of trying to improve your business’s search engine optimisation for these keywords.

However, if you use too much exact match anchor text across your company website, well your business might incur a link penalty (Google Penguin). That’s because the text might not read naturally, and it might be deemed that he is using “black hat SEO methods”.

So, for example, if you are selling handmade kitchens and keep using the exact match anchor text as “bespoke kitchens”, then this could be deemed as black hat SEO, and your business could incur a link penalty.

So, our best advice, write the anchor text naturally. If the link leads to a page selling 75% cocoa white chocolate from Belgium, well write it as such. Make sure you follow white hat methods, read Google’s WebMaster Guidelines, to make sure you are using white hat SEO methods.

Backlinks

When you obtain backlinks from an external website, you want a really good mix of “generic”, “branded”, and also “exact match” keywords. This should be a good mix; what you most definitely don’t want is a hundred links all have the same anchor text; this will lead to a link penalty.

 

Don’t just check your business’s backlinks

So various SEO agencies, sometimes, just check their clients’ backlinks using, say, Ahrefs- and that’s exactly right; this needs to be done on a regular basis. Therefore, they might use quality SEO tools such as Moz Pro, Ahrefs and also Majestic backlink checking tool to do this.
And this is good; that’s precisely what a business such as an SEO company should doing. We for example move the backlinks out of Moz Pro and into Microsoft Excel, so we can see the latest backlinks built to that domain. We can then see how many quality backlinks we have built for our clients.

 

Websites offering backlinks

However, before you obtain a backlink from another business, for example, they might e-mail to say we are about to offer a backlink to a specific page. They may also direct message you on LinkedIn, and say that there about to publish a piece of content marketing, and wondered if you would contribute your thoughts on what they are writing about.

However, before your business accepts a backlink, its definitely worth checking that business backlink profile using a quality tool.
You don’t want to accept backlinks from other businesses, which themselves have bad backlinks linking to them.
By association, your business could receive a link penalty (Google Penguin) if you obtain too many backlinks from websites that themselves have low-quality backlink profiles. Therefore, the SEO company should check the backlink profiles, before accepting a link, to see if they are good quality and then confirm or reject a backlink from that business.

Relevance

Whether the backlink is from a relevant business is an important consideration that your marketing company should make when building links. The backlinks to your website should be relevant to your business. For example, there’s no point in the law firm in Wales having a backlink profile made up of just backlinks from a local rugby club.

Although you might want some links from the local rugby club because your business might sponsor them, most links should be from other websites to do with offering legal advice, such as from other solicitors’ practices.

Therefore, backlink relevance is essential when building backlinks; you have to consider the relevance of the backlinks carefully. The majority of the quality links you build should therefore be from other businesses which are relevant to your business.

If they are not, then this could damage your business search engine optimisation. Because Googlebot, when it indexes these links, can get confused; if your law firm has say 1000 links from a local rugby club?

The two businesses are entirely different; therefore, it can confuse Google, as to whether your business is a solicitors practice or a rugby club? Therefore a solicitors practice should have links from other solicitors.

TLD, domain name

It is most definitely worth mentioning that you want quality links built to your website, and if the backlinks are quality then they can come from .com, .co.uk, .gov websites, as long as their quality backlinks it doesn’t matter. For example, a local council or government link might have a .gov extension at the end of the URL. Not always, but generally speaking, a link from a local council or a government is an indication of a good quality backlink.

However, with that said, you can have some brilliant quality.com and .co.uk backlinks. For example, if you were to get a backlink from BBC.co.uk this is an example of a good quality backlink

 

So, how should we go about earning backlinks?

Different digital marketing agencies might recommend different ways to build backlinks. However, here at this agency, we only recommend only one way of making backlinks. That’s to create content marketing with a highly high Google E-EAT score.
The content marketing in order to obtain quality backlinks should be:

  • Be well written
  • Be useful
  • Be written by an expert

If your business content marketing publishes really well-written blog posts to help their customers, it could be a guide written about something relatively simple, such as how to change the oil on a car.
If your business manages to create a really good guide on “how to change the oil on a Ford Focus” then this is when other websites may start linking to the work. This can help your business to start accumulating good-quality backlinks.

 

Why not call us today?

We are an established SEO company based in the city centre of Cardiff. We can offer you a free quotation.

We can also offer an in-depth SEO audit starting from £1000. We can help you get your business onto the first page of Google.

 

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