Hey Volta – what are backlinks?
Backlinks are quite simply inbound hyperlinks which come from one web page to another.
So that’s all very straight forward, but why are they important (or don’t we really need to worry about them)?
The simple answer is yes you do need to worry about them as they can in fact play an important part in how your website ranks in search engines.
When another website links to a page on your site, search engines view that as a good sign because that site is in effect telling their users that you are saying something important, interesting or of value and hopefully all three.
A backlink to your site can also pass “link juice” to your site, this can help with the authority of your site, in turn giving Google another pointer that your site is of value.
Be warned though, some sites will insert a “no follow” tag, if that’s the case then their link won’t be passing on any “link juice” so won’t be of value in terms of SEO.
Years ago almost any backlink made a big difference but as Google gets cleverer you can’t just expect any backlink to be of value.
It’s important to get high quality links which come from authoritative sites that have natural links to what you do.
For instance, getting links from a site about roofing if your site is about hairdressing won’t be of much use for your SEO as the information is not relevent to what your site offers.
Good high quality relevant links will help your site to get better search engine rankings and can also help get your site indexed, this is particularly useful if your site is new.
Another great thing about backlinks is that they help drive referral traffic to your site and if it’s been driven to your site by another relevant site, the bounce rate tends to be lower which can again help with your rankings.
You can check your backlinks using this free basic tool from the openlink profiler site here:
A word of warning!
One thing to avoid at all costs, as tempting as it may seem, is to “buy in” backlinks from link farms or use automatic website submissions as these will damage your sites rankings.
As Google constantly improves it’s algorithm the “quick fixes” no longer work, so it’s important to do things the right way.
We hope this helps and you no longer have to ask What are Backlinks?