Quality Backlinks and Domain Authority
Quality external links also known as backlinks are imperative for ranking in the search engine result pages (SERPs). These are websites that have added one or more of your links to their website.
You can check your domain authority on moz.com. The Moz tool will score your website out of 100. The higher the score, the higher your website will place in Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs). Your domain authority is influenced by the quality of your external links.
Remember that your backlinks must be trustworthy and come from high-quality reputable sites. High-quality websites are often published on a brand domain, have positive credentials and include content written by industry experts. They will also be secure, have a unique perspective, contain no duplicate content, and possess solid social cues.
Do not waste your time submitting your website to hundreds of random search engines in one go, many of which have been blacklisted because the search engines class them as spam generators. This practice will only hurt your search engine rankings. I suggest you set aside some money in your budget, each month, for a SEO service provider to do your directory submissions and organic backlink-building over a period. Do some research to find the best ones.
If you prefer to build your own backlinks, I advise you visit majestic.com to find reputable and trusted sites to link to your business.
Traffic Generation Strategies: SEO Backlinks
Important note: removing any backlinks to your website can lead to a decrease in your web traffic. If you have “spammy” backlinks, you can contact the websites directly and ask them to remove the link.
Tips for building backlinks
- Create and publish quality content
- Link your blog posts and articles to your social media pages.
- Write product and service reviews for other sites.
- Write keyword-rich guest posts and comments on social networking sites, blogs, and forums.
- Try to get interviewed by other blogs and industry experts.
- Use a co-citation. This is when your brand name appears in Google’s search results. Google interprets this as a backlink.
You may want to add a Useful Links page to exchange links (also known as a reciprocal link) with other online businesses. Do this manually. Do not use a link trade merchant.
Important note: reciprocal linking will devalue your site if the websites you link to:
- Are not relevant to your own
- Contain poor content
- Have no page rank
- Offer products or services like yours
- Are considered as spamming websites by search engines
You can link to other high-quality websites that provide services and products that you do not offer, but are related to your business. For example, if you sell pet products on your website, you may consider exchanging links with an online retailer that provides a dog-sitting service.
- You can submit your website to the main search engines such as Google, Bing, Ask, and Yahoo. Although search engines should crawl and index your site automatically as long as your site is not blocked. Simply, search for the Submit URL Link for each search engine and then enter your website address.
- Infographics are growing in popularity. Submit them to directories like globalnewswire.com.
- Wikipedia provides a “list of the most-popular websites”. Check it out. You may find some websites among them in which you can obtain a free link, e.g. Reddit, Yahoo, Wikipedia, etc.
How to Remove Bad Backlinks
Some SEO service providers will supply you with a “toxic” link report. Some web owners panic and pay the SEO service provider to upload a disavow file to Google of every link listed in the report without looking at the websites or understanding why they have been interpreted as “toxic”.
Use web tools, such as Majestic, SEMrush, or Ahrefs, to determine whether or not backlinks are harming your search engine rankings and/or your business. Rarely will this be the case.
However, certain backlinks can be harmful to your business. For example, if you have a vegan eCommerce business and you discover that links to your website appear on a butcher’s website. This can damage your brand and reputation.
You can email websites and politely ask them to remove the links you do not want to appear on their site. If you have had no response from your email requests, you can upload a Google Disavow file, asking Google to remove the bad backlinks.
Uploading a disavow file to Google is easy, but should only be used as a last result. You will find the disavow file link in the Google Console.*
*This does not guarantee the links will be removed. You may also see a drop in web traffic following a disavow.