If you are even remotely familiar with SEO and its terms, you have without a doubt heard about backlinks. Unfortunately for many business owners the task of acquiring backlinks can seem overwhelming and daunting. To be honest, unless you have a provider or someone in house, backlinks can be a strenuous process. In this article, we will talk about what a backlink is, what it tells Google and most importantly, what backlinks do for your website.
What Is A Backlink
First things first, what is a backlink? Also known as a citation, in its simplest form, a backlink is a link from another website to yours. This is not to be confused with internal links or external links
- Internal Links – Internal links are linking one page on your website to another page on your website. For instance, a button that says “contact us” would link to your contact page. This is important as it tells Google you have “supplemental content” supporting your other pages. You can always think of your website as the american highway system. Everything is linked one way or another. Make sure any of your users can get to any relevant page on your website without having to do too much looking.
- External Links – External links are essentially the opposite of backlinks. It’s your website that links to another website. External links are important as they tell Google you are “citing your sources.”
We normally take the stance that all links are important since they all tell the search engines what they need or want to hear.
What A Backlink Tells Google
Backlinks are basically votes from other websites. You can think of Google as a giant popularity contest. The more votes the better. When you have a link (vote) you are telling Google a few things: That your page’s content is useful, popular and credible because another website thinks so by linking back to it.
How Backlinks Help SEO
In essence having backlinks is the easiest way for Google to know that your page/website is useful. If you’re optimized correctly and have links pointing to the page it turns into a numbers game. A study done by Moz a few years ago broke down what the most important parts of SEO are. What the study found is that a little over half of how Google ranks websites is by how “other websites reference you.” This confirms more or less the whole popularity contest theory.
If you would like to know more about backlinks, or how many backlinks it would take for you to get to page one, talk with one of our SEO experts.