An essential part of off-page optimization of a website is building links, which is the active effort to build authority. According to Andrey Lipattesv, senior Google search quality strategist, unique, high-quality content and links to his own site are the two most important ranking factors.
In this context, relevant external links are good for search engines. E.g. you link your own website to other sites, while your own site linked internally to other pages on your domain. The qualitative sum of all these links is often summarized under the term Link building.
You can differentiate between incoming and outgoing external backlinks. Outgoing links are primarily intended to help the reader deepen their knowledge of the topic and refer them to other websites. Therefore, it is attractive to generate as many quality links as possible between other websites and yours. This will help meet Google’s ranking factors and therefore improve the generic ranking of your site in SERPs. Creating links is worth it.
Definition of link building
Building links is the process of getting hyperlinks from other websites to yours. A hyperlink (simply called a link) allows users to navigate between pages on the Internet. Links have a central function in the WWW: search engines like Google or Bing use links to search the web for references to relevant content and topics. In principle, there are many techniques for building links with varying degrees of complexity; It is no coincidence that SEO experts consider link building as one of the most demanding areas of responsibility. Specifically, this also means that a diverse and experienced practice of building links can offer huge advantages to compete for the top spots on the search.
The relevance of link building is also underlined in a 2020 Backlinko study, which evaluated Google’s 11.8 million search results and clearly showed that there is still a strong correlation between Google search results and backlinks.
What is the reason for the great relevance of the links?
- Link building is a process that requires significant investment, with its own website and recommended high-quality content being the basics.
- Links are public and permanent recommendations accessible to all, unlike social media contributions.
- When you place an external link, you give visitors a boost to leave your site and go somewhere else. It’s not for no reason.
What does it matter in building links today?
Following the Google Penguin update, which was rolled out successively in 2012, many websites suffered considerable rating losses. Thanks to this change of algorithm, the search engine giant’s tracker detects unnatural, deliberately manipulated backlinks or fraudulent linking strategies and degrades the corresponding websites in the ranking. Since then, a natural link profile is necessary for a good ranking.
The fact that classification drops are rapid is indirectly related to the highest standards of content creation. As content quality has gradually improved during the content revolution, Google’s quality parameters have been expanded by checking backlink profiles. However, that doesn’t change the fact that link buildingis and remains important to Google. It will only be much harder to build really good connections that really contribute to the success in qualifying. Google employees periodically confirm the importance of links.
Is Link building the most important classification factor?
It is not yet possible for Google to classify the quality of web pages using only technology. Therefore, links help the search engine assess the relevance of web pages.
Internet users express their recommendations through links and thus underline the quality of the website. For other users, these links offer enormous added value, so that they find new content that they would not find in search engines. As the given examples show, the more competitive the keywords, the more crucial it will be to build links.
In a highly competitive environment, Link building is a decisive classification factor. The best content for highly competitive keywords doesn’t work without binding power. Bad to poor content with lots of links.
This is also demonstrated by many practical examples that we regularly analyze: We have seen pages that consist of images but have many links. However, these pages are very well classified. We also see great content that is not classified at all because there is no binding power.
Also, during content audits, it turns out that the page in a domain whose content has been optimized for the keyword and has many internal links is not always classified. Instead, there is another similar page in the domain, with worse content exactly for that keyword, that wasn’t optimized for that keyword, but has a strong external backlink. A strong link can sometimes overcome other relevant factors such as page optimization and usability.
Why Link building remains relevant:
- There are several thousand good sites with long texts.
- There are many fewer active pages in link building. Many of the agency’s clients are active in the content industry, but almost none of them are active in the field of link building. Even with online agencies, Link-building leads to a dark existence. Therefore, in principle, good link building practices offer very good prospects.
- Google must select ten pages from the thousands of available pages, which are allowed on page 1. Google does this mainly based on backlinks (as Google also confirms, previous appointments). Google can also rate and compare this more easily and better than text quality, layout, design, etc. That’s why we often find that very bad and ugly pages occupy the first rows. If you then look at the profile of the links on these pages, you’ll notice how much Google trusts these links.
Tools for successful link building
- OpenLinkProfiler: free and well-structured analysis tool.
- The Online Solutions Group Backlink Checker, also free of charge, to illustrate and analyze your backlink profile.
- Moz Link Explorer: practical backlink checker with spam factor display for link pages.
- Ahrefs specializes in SEO software. Ahrefs Site Explorer makes it easy to find organic traffic.
- SemRush has a module clearly designed for backlink auditing and active link construction.
- With LinkResearchTools you can clean up bad links and you can perform a detailed analysis of the SEO competition.
- Each tool works differently and offers different values. Therefore, it can be useful to compare and use multiple tools. Each tool collects data relevant to link building differently. Therefore, the data may vary and are never the same from one tool to another.
- Without tools, it is impossible to perform a clean analysis of the backlink profile. However, this lays the groundwork for successful link building.