Backlinks: The Ultimate [Tip-to-Toe] Guide about Backlinks on the Internet
There is a common term ‘Backlink’, which is used most frequently in the space of Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
A number of bloggers, digital marketers, and SEO Executives who have recently started their journey, find it hard to understand this term. So, what in actual a ‘backlink’ is?
In this blog post, I’ll try to cover each and everything from scratch to master in creating backlinks. You’ll get the basic understanding from the very beginning about backlinks.
I’m pretty sure, by the end of this blog post, you’ll be an expert in building high-quality backlinks. The great thing is, you’re not required to spend a single penny, all tactics that I’m going to share with you here is FREE but proven and most effective.
I’ve written this blog post after long research, I studied almost all the blog posts related to backlinks available on the most popular blogs like ShoutMeLoud, Neil Patel, Backlinko, Ahrefs, Moz, Wikipedia, and so on. After performing calculation and filtering the content, I have written this blog post for you, The Tip-to-Toe Guide about Backlinks.
You won’t find this much of content (useful and handpicked) in a single blog post on the entire web. This post might be long, so you can bookmark it. Bookmarking this page can help you re-reading it as many times as you need, with ease.
We’ll cover in this blog post-
- What are backlinks?
- Why Backlinks are important for SEO?
- How to build High-Quality Backlinks?
- Useful tactics to build HQ backlinks
- Helpful tools to build more backlinks in no time.
Let’s get started with the very first and basic question.
What are backlinks?
According to Wikipedia, “A backlink for a given web resource is a link from some other website to that web resource. A web resource may be a website, web page, or web directory. A backlink is a reference comparable to a citation.”
A bit complicated, right? Let me break it down further for your better understandings.
In general terms, Incoming links to a webpage are called Backlinks. Which means, when a page on the web is getting linked to any other webpage, it’s called a backlink.
A couple of years back, backlinks were the core factor to rank #1 on Google and other popular search engines. The more backlinks a webpage has, the more are the chances to rank higher in SERP (Search Engine Result Page).
This is true today as well, but Google is smarter today. What kind of backlinks do you have, is far more important now.
Before going ahead, let’s address a brief about some terms related to backlinks, these terms will move around you in your journey. So, it’s good to know about them.
- Link Juice: When any of your article (or homepage) is linked to another webpage, this means the page is passing ‘link juice’ to you. This link juice is something that is going to help you rank your article, it also helps you to improve the domain authority. If you don’t want to pass the link juice, you can use a ‘no-follow’ tag.
- No-Follow Link: The link with a ‘no-follow’ tag is considered as ‘No-Follow’ Link. No-follow links do not pass the link juice to other websites even after linking to them. No-follow links are not useful for ranking and they do not contribute anything in ranking your website. Generally, webmasters use the no-follow tag when they link to the non-reliable site.
- Do-follow link: Do-follow links are the links that pass link juice. By default, all the links you’d add in your blog post are do-follow.
- Linking Root Domains: The number of backlinks coming to your website from unique domains is referred to as linking root domains. If a single website has linked to you many times, it’ll be considered as one linked root domain.
- Low-Quality Links: The links that come from harvested sites, computerized sites, porn sites, and spam sites are considered as low-quality links. They do not have a positive impact on website ranking, even they are far more harmful. So, make sure whenever you buy backlinks, double-check the sites from where you’re getting links.
- Internal Links: Links that point from one webpage to another webpage within the same website/domain are called internal links. The process of creating internal links are called interlinking or internal linking.
- Anchor text: The text that is used to create a hyperlink is called anchor text. Links with anchor text are really useful to rank for specific keywords.
Now, when you know a brief about backlinks and some of its related terms, let’s go ahead and discuss, why backlinks are important for a website or you can say, what are the advantages of backlinks.
Benefits of Backlinks in SEO
As mentioned, a lot has been already changed about backlinks. There was a time when low-quality links were useful too. When backlinks were the most important factor to rank higher. Then, Google rolled out its Penguin algorithm that changed the whole concept of ranking a site via backlinks.
It doesn’t mean that backlinks do not matter today. Of course, backlinks matter, but along with many other factors. Such as, from which sites you’re getting backlinks? Does the site belongs to your niche? Quality of backlinks, and and much more.
In order to rank today organically, you need to have quantity of quality backlinks, backlinks from authoritative and relevant sites.
Let me break it down, if your site is about digital marketing and you’re getting a backlink from a site belong to ‘fish food’, then you’re not going to get any significant results.
Hope you’re getting my point! If yes, make sure to get or build backlinks from relevant sites with higher domain authority. Your backlinks must possess quality, this is how you’ll get to the fruitful results.
If someone is not linking to you naturally, go out and build backlinks following the tactics mentioned in this blog post.
Come back to the topic and talk about the advantages of creating backlinks for your (or maybe your client’s) website.
1. Backlinks improve the Organic Ranking
Backlinks help in improving your search engine ranking. If you’re getting quality links from relevant sites, you’re going to rank higher organically.
There is a term ‘SERP‘ that stands for Search Engine Result Page.
Here is a screenshot from Ahrefs’ Keyword Explorer (Keywords Research Tool), I typed in the term ‘link-building’. What you’ll find in this screenshot is, a webpage with more quality backlinks tends to rank higher. Which means more HQ backlinks you have; more likely you’re going to rank on the top of SERP.
Make sure to build backlinks to individual posts and pages along with the homepage.
2. Faster Indexing
New webpages are discovered by Google bots using backlinks exist on other websites. Your site could be crawled effectively when Google bots have discovered your backlinks.
If you do not have backlinks, it is harder for Google to find your website or Google will take longer than usual in indexing your webpage. If your site is new, then it’s more important for you to get backlinks. It is helpful in getting faster discovery and hence indexing of your webpage.
3. Referral Traffic
Backlinks do not only boost your organic traffic by ranking but also send referral traffic to your site in a huge amount. Neil Patel is already making over 300,000 monthly visitors as referral traffic, just by backlinks.
When a person is reading a blog post, (s)he might click on a link to find out more about a given topic.
This is so obvious that a link on a webpage will be related to content on the webpage. Which means only targeted people will click on the link, results in a low bounce rate.
Let’s move ahead and check out:
How to build High-Quality backlinks?
Now you know, what are backlinks and why backlinks are important. Let’s check out some proven and actionable techniques to build HQ backlinks.
One thing you need to always keep in mind is, you do not have to chase the number of backlinks, instead, you have to chase the quality of backlinks.
In the above screenshot, if you have observed, there are some webpages having a greater number of backlinks but not on rank #1. One of the many possible reasons is, these webpages are not high-quality & relevant backlinks. So, what matters in SEO is not the number of backlinks but the quality of backlinks.
Now, I’m going to list some ways to get quality backlinks for your blog/website.
- Create useful content
- Start guest blogging
- Duplicate your competitors’ backlinks
- Use the broken link building technique
- Web directory submission
1. Create useful content
Useful content is the backbone of getting links, just think, why someone will link to you? The most obvious answer is, your content is useful and so great.
If your article is awesome and useful enough, people would love to link to it.
Here the question is:
How to create an awesome article?
I’ve some tips for you to create useful and enjoyable content:
- Create a solution: People look for the blog posts to find out the solution to a problem they have. You have to write an article focusing on solving a problem.
- Easy to read content: Your article will only be awesome if it’s easy to read. Look, not everyone is that much perfect in English. You have to make sure that your article is easy to understand. Write short and simple sentences. Use proper formatting, headings, images, and other media to make your article good looking.
- Be unique: There are thousands of choices for every single person to choose from. Give people a reason to choose you, think how can you stand out from the crowd?
- Include real-life examples and proofs: People love to learn from authoritative people. If you’re not one, include quote experts and examples of famous people on that topic.
After creating and publishing an awesome blog post, it’s time to reach out to some people. Go and find out some groups of people that are interested in your content, people that have already written similar and related articles.
Since they have written on the same or related topic, there are good chances that they’ll show interest in your article as well. Here the question is, how to find such people? Simple! Use Google, on the search bar, type in your topic and collect all the articles and emails from the people appear in SERP. Make sure to try variations.
You can also use a tool BuzzSumo. In BuzzSumo, open content analyzer, enter your topic and filter (if required) and export the list.
Please note, articles must be based on proper research and useful examples.
2. Start Guest Blogging
Guest Blogging is writing blog posts/articles for other websites instead of writing articles for your own. You can use guest blogging techniques to get quality backlinks from relevant sites.
How to get backlinks doing guest blogging?
Generally, when you write guest posts for a blog, the blog owner allows you to give 1-2 backlinks for your site within the article.
Probably you might be thinking, how to do guest blogging?
Well, the first and foremost thing you have to do is to find out the sites that allow for guest blogging. Look for the sites that are already accepting guest posts, it’ll dramatically increase your chances of getting approved.
Basically, the sites that are accepting guest posts are more likely to have a page with calling, ‘contributors’, ‘write for us’, ‘become a contributor’, ‘contribute’, etc. In order to find them, use Google’s advanced search operators.
Below are some search operators you may use:
- [Your_Topic] “write for us”
- [Your_Topic] “become a contributor”
- [Your_Topic] “guest post”
- [Your_Topic] “guest article”
- [Your_Topic] inurl:contribute
After finding the websites, follow their guidelines and instructions and submit your blog post accordingly.
Alternatively, you can use Ahrefs’ Content Explorer to find out the guest blogging websites.
To begin with, Ahrefs’ Content Explorer tool, enter the keyword of your space in the search bar.
Check the box with the text ‘one article per domain’, it’ll provide you the list of targeted domains for whom you can write. You can narrow the domains using one or more combination of filters. Your aim must be to find out the best blogs for whom you can write.
From this list of sites, many sites may not have a calling to contribute page, but if your article is good enough, I’m pretty sure, they are going to publish your article on their blog. Think, who does not love a good piece of content that is thorough and comprehensive.
You can look for all sites in your niche even if these sites do not have a ‘write for us’ page. Since the sites are similar to your niche then there is a higher probability that site owners will accept your blog post.
Even I don’t have a ‘write for us’ button, but If you will approach me with a good piece of content, I’m definitely going to publish your article on my website.
Here I have a frequently asked question beginners have most of the time.
How to find a good topic to write on?
Well, the answer is simple for this question, just visit the popular blogs out there in your niche, and check out their popular posts. Write on the topic that has most shares and engagement.
3. Duplicate your competitor’s backlinks
You’ll happy to know, you can take advantage of your competitors. Probably your competitors on the first page of Google are not new and they are ranking on #1 page of Google, which means they have tons of backlinks.
You can use Ahrefs’ Link Intersect tool to know how your competitors are getting plenty of links and then you have to replicate them.
When you’re done finding the people who have linked to your competitors but not to you, you have to use the email outreach strategy and try to get those links for you.
Make sure you follow/subscribe to my blog; I’m going to share some awesome techniques that are going to help you boost your traffic dramatically and hence your sales and services.
4. Broken Link Building Technique
The Internet is evolving constantly. Pages, their addresses, URLs shift or get deleted most of the time. Broken links are those links that are no longer working or the links that do not exist.
Think, how annoying you’ll feel when you’ll click on a link within a blog post and you’ve jumped to a window with a 404 Error (Page Not Found). Webmasters and searchers hate broken links as it may lead to poor user experience.
Webmasters are busy and you have an opportunity. Actually, it takes a lot of efforts to find out and fix a broken link on your blog or website. You can use the broken link building technique in order to get backlinks.
Here’s is the concept:
- You have to find out a broken link.
- You have to recreate the dead content.
- You have to approach the people linking to that expired content and ask them to link to you (since your content is new & fresh).
The important part of this technique is to find out the right broken links, then recreate the content, and then pitch that content. There is a tool that will help you to analyze backlinks.
Enter the high authority domain name of your space into Ahrefs’ Site Explorer. Then head to the best links and filter by ‘HTTP 404 not found’.
You’ll then have the list of popular blog posts of the entered domain; you have to select the one that has a number of backlinks (Here number 2).
Use Wayback Machine, it’ll help you to find out about the chosen blog post, what was the content on the webpage with a dead link.
Now, what you have to do is, recreate this content and reach out to all people who have linked to this dead link and ask them to link to you instead.
5. Web Directory Submission
Web directory submission is another easy way to build backlinks.
Although, this method is not popular these days, because, to find legal web directories is not that easy. Be aware of those sites, that ask you to link to them before they will give your website into their directory.
Please note: If you’re using automatic direction submission, stop doing right now. Search Engines will start to consider you as spam and will affect negatively to your domain authority. It may also lead to the elimination of your blog from search engines.
Here are some sites that can be used for web directory submission (verified).
You can use these above-mentioned sites to build backlinks easily. It’ll not take a lot of time.
Tools For Building Backlinks
You can create backlinks following the strategies mentioned in this blog post, be it basic strategies or advanced strategies for building backlinks.
Although it is equally important for you to build backlinks is less time so that you can drive the desired results. To save your time, I’ve listed 10 tools that will help you to get more backlinks.
You can use one or more of the listed tools to build your strategy for backlinks, they are going to help you a lot. I’m pretty sure, your website rank will boost dramatically, and somewhere it’s necessary for you to know about these tools.
1. Check My Links
This is one of the easiest tools that can be used to build your backlink strategy for SEO. This is a Google Chrome extension; this is why it is easy to use.
One of the best ways to build backlinks is to find out broken links on a webpage and then recreate content on the topic whose link is broken, then approach to the right person and ask him to link to you by giving them some suitable reasons.
Check My Links chrome extension will help you to speed up your work process to build backlinks. It might be possible that you’ve used broken link building earlier, but, for the next time use this tool.
Enabling this extension on any webpage will show you the broken backlinks of that page in no time, then you can take advantage of this opportunity.
2. Broken Link Builder
Here comes the second option to check the broken links: Broken Link Builder.
If you’re not interested in the first tool, you can try this one. Check My Links allows you to check the broken links on a single webpage at a time but, with Broken Link Builder, you can search the web within seconds. You can easily find broken links.
After having the list of broken links, it’s time to work and gain some quality backlinks. You can use the outreach process and ask the person that can give you a backlink. Ask him to replace the broken link with your content. Quite easy!
Here are three steps on ‘how to get started’.
- Use the backlink check tool to look for the broken links on a topic that you can recreate or that is already available on your site.
- Choose the desired pages that suit you most. The webpages from where you want backlinks pointing to your site.
- Reach out to the site authors, tell them about their broken link and ask them to link to you.
What’s good with Broken Link Builder?
- It saves you time.
- You can find better opportunities to build backlinks.
As a Digital Marketer, it’s required for you to have both.
ContentBird (LinkBird) is many-in-one SEO tool. Many of its features can be used to build backlinks, it can also be used as:
- Backlink popularity and profile analyzation
- Tool for track your rankings
- Keywords research tool for SEO
The most awesome thing with this backlink tool is, it can easily be integrated with your content marketing and SEO strategy. This is now something that makes this platform helpful.
Some other features of LinkBird are:
- It helps to find out the high-quality backlinks’ opportunity.
- You can check out the backlinks of your competitors, it’ll allow you to chase the same links for your website.
- It comes with an integration option with email, which is helpful in the outreach process.
Last but not least, the useful feature of this SEO software is, you can work with your team. This is a perfect tool for companies in which more than one person work on link building. This way you can save time.
The Pitchbox backlink building tool comes with numerous features and much power that only a few tools have, this is best for outreach and link prospecting.
Here’s how this company describes itself:
“Pitchbox automates the grunt work so you can focus on what you do best: creating real, person-to-person connections with the people you want to reach.”
If you’re serious about building backlinks, this is something I’ll highly recommend you, it can help you to take your business towards the next level.
Ultimately, outreach is something that can help you to make the most out of building backlinks. With Pitchbox, you can easily outreach to the potential webmasters, this tool also provides the contact information and social profiles which makes it easy for you to build natural links. You can easily find out the targeted opportunities as per your search preferences.
Pitchbox doesn’t stop here! It goes one step further, it provides automated follow-up feature by which you can keep yourself in the touch of opportunities without worrying about time.
Last but not least! The tool comes with some amazing templates that help you to stand out from the crowd in the outreach process. It won’t let your emails buried. Pitchbox also provides a number of other features, try it today and build link in an effective manner.
The tool basically could be used to rank for local terms. Here’s what Whitespark tool can be used for:
“You can find link opportunities quickly and easily for guest blogging, niche directories, link pages, sponsorships, and more.”
If you’re expert in finding link opportunities, then this tool can help you to speed up your work. Just enter the keywords and Whitespark will give you thousands of results within minutes. You can then select and export your top prospects.
With the Whitespark tool, you can find opportunities from:
- Guest Blogging
- Links Page
- Content Promoters
- Expert Interviews
- Topical Blogs
- Professional Organizations
These numerous opportunities are definitely going to help you in building high-quality backlinks for your website. Whitespark lets you use itself on a broad scale as well, but it’s good only for local results.
6. Monitor Backlinks
This is not a kind of traditional tool, but this is really useful and more than 100,000 people have already used this tool to grow their business.
A lot can be done with this tool, to mention a few, check out for what it can be used:
- Building Great Links: It’ll let you know about the high-quality and relevant sites that can be used for outreach and link building.
- Building Relationships with Influencers and Monitoring Your brand: Get updated when your site gets a new backlink & stay updated about your brand. You can build relationships with influencers using the contact information provided.
- Recover Lost Links: I know, hard work is required to build a backlink, especially as a beginner and what if you lost a backlink? Whenever you’ll lose a link, Monitor Backlinks will let you know about it instantly. You can then reach out to the site owner and ask him to re-link to you.
Look at the screenshot below to know more about Monitor Backlinks, what else it can do for you.
If you want to use this tool, this is something you need to know, How exactly ‘Monitor Backlinks tool’ works?
The tool comes with an amazing dashboard which is quite easy to use, the UI is also good. At first, you have to set up your competitors using the dashboard. This tool will show you every incoming link your competitors are receiving. Then, it’s time to observe carefully and figure out the link building strategy of your competitors. After having the understandings, you can use the same strategy for you to build backlinks.
If you believe your site deserves the same link, you can then quickly reach out and start a conversation. With the proper link building strategy, you can steal your competitor’s backlinks for your website. All you have to do is, just ask for the replacement of a link with yours.
Other helpful features of this backlink tool i.e., their SEO metrics help you to know more about backlink, that includes:
- Link status
- Anchor Texts
- IP host detection
- External link account
- Social Shares
Monitor Backlinks has got you covered in monitoring your backlinks, and what your other competitors are doing.
“Quality is more important than Quantity”, the statement remains the truth in the game of backlinks building. To get fruitful results you need to have quantity of quality links.
Unlike other backlink tools, Linkstant lets you know about every new backlink pointing to your site instantly without waiting for days or weeks. You can find out most of the things about your new backlinks as soon as someone linked to you.
Here, I’m listing some benefits (out of many) of using Linkstant:
- Getting a new quality backlink naturally, help you to stay motivated. This way you can work more which in results grow your business.
- You can check who has linked to you, know about him and strike up a conversation with him will help you to secure opportunities for the future.
- As Linkstant lets you know about new link instantly, you need to check out that you’re getting linked either for a good reason or for a bad reason, if it’s for a good reason, Great! But, if it’s for a bad reason, you can take action accordingly so that you can prevent your brand from harm.
If used wisely, you can use this tool for link building strategy, I’m pretty sure it’ll be helpful.
Linkody is quite similar to Linkstant, it also provides a number of backlinks checker tools so that you could have better understandings about your backlinks. It also gives you an overview of your competitors and about their link building strategy.
The best feature of Linkody is that they send you an email whenever your competitors get any new link. You can then chase the same link and try to get the same link for you.
Linkody can also be used to check out the complete backlink profile from your competitors. Here’s the information you’ll be avail with:
- Number of links
- When the link was discovered
- Source of URL
- Anchor text
- Moz Domain Authority
A deep analyzation of your competitor’s backlink profile can help you outrank them.
Linkody has a three-step approach that will help you in the link building process:
- Determining and monitoring backlinks.
- Estimating backlinks by high-level metrics.
- Re-examining your competitors’ backlink approach (to make yours better).
Let’s first look at, how GroupHigh describes itself.
“Find the best bloggers and influencers, manage your relationships, and measure the value of your content.”
Although, this tool is comparatively harder to use and there is a reason for it: it has more features than any other backlink tools.
You can start using this backlink tool by entering the key phrases of your space. Like, if you’re in digital marketing space, you can try keywords such as social media marketing, digital marketing strategies, digital marketing tactics, SEO campaigns, etc.
Once GroupHigh returned you the results for your query, you opt to filter them by post date and authority of the domain. Which ensures that you’re reaching out to the active websites and the sites have already a greater authority.
Another advantage of using the GroupHigh tool is, you can check your results directly from the dashboard. From this dashboard screen, you can conclude, what works for you and what doesn’t work for you? Then you can alter your approach accordingly.
In the case of SEO, the tool is really something you need to try at least once. You may not find any other backlink checker tool that serves this much of information.
“BuzzStream” is a tool that is going to fade away your outreach process problems and will help you to save your time for sure. There is nothing more important in SEO, connecting with people and giving them valuable content and in return expecting a new link.
With BuzzStream, you can easily overcome the challenges that come most often in the process of email outreach.
It’s what BuzzStream says about itself:
“Keep your link development projects on track – and see where every campaign’s at with a touch of a button. Set reminders to follow up, track campaign progress, and share tasks with your team – so you work like a well-oiled machine.”
Think, how many times you send an email and then forget about it? If you’ll keep on doing so, you’ll end up wasting your time.
BuzzStream can help you to optimize your performance, it’ll help you to get the most of outreach process.
The more emails you send out, the more you expect to have a positive response and hence there are greater chances to get a link as well. BuzzStream takes care of all your process on the go
So, finally, let’s end this list of backlinks building tools here. Using these SEO tools will made SEO and backlink building strategy simple. You can use these tools for almost every effective tactic ranging from SMM to conversion rate optimization.
Final Words to Conclude
Backlinks, I mean, High-quality backlinks are the backbone for ranking on Google. There are several tools and tactics to build backlinks that I’ve introduced in this blog post.
These backlinks builing techniques are proven and effective. All the famous bloggers and SEO experts out there use the same strategies to build backlinks. You can also use these tips to create backlinks for your website and grow your business today.
As I promised, I’ll make this blog post out of the box! Hope you’ll like this blog post, if so, please do let me know by sharing ansd liking to this post.
If you’re also working on builing backlinks or if you know any techniques to create quality backlinks that I don’t have mentioned, drop a comment below and I’ll include your strategy as well.
I’d be more than happy to hear from you, thanks in advance!
If you want to grow your business, we can help you, reach out to us using ‘Contact us’ page.