What is the real value of a backlink?

  ●   March 19, 2020 | Blog, Content Marketing
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March 19, 2020 | Blog, Content Marketing

To put it simply, link building involves the process of gaining links from other websites to your own, with the end goal being to improve search engine visibility. At Semetrical, we undertake a number of different strategies for link building, tailored to the client’s needs and priorities. This may include content marketing, data projects, creative campaigns, guest posting and building useful tools. You can find our top tips for creating an effective link building campaign here

Link building is a key tactic within the SEO industry as the quality and quantity of links your site receives provides a signal to Google about whether you are a trustworthy source, which can lead to higher rankings in the SERPs. However, there are many common misconceptions as to the real value of a link, especially when Google’s standards are always evolving through regular algorithm updates.  

Common Link Building Myths Explained

  1. “Link building is for traffic” – Although it is true that building links will drive referral traffic, it’s not the key objective or metric when it comes to putting a link acquisition strategy in place. The amount of referral traffic you can expect from a backlink is very small. Instead, if you are looking to improve search visibility for a specific keyword segment and in turn, boost traffic numbers, building links to relevant pages on your site will help those pages to rank in higher positions which hold better click through rates and thus, drive more traffic from the search results pages.
  2. “External links are more important than internal ones” – It can be easy to focus purely on your backlink strategy and neglect the linking that’s going on between your site’s pages but, by doing so, you’re missing out on valuable SEO benefits. Not only is internal linking important for establishing your site’s architecture, ensuring users can navigate easily, it also allows you to spread link equity, in turn boosting SEO.
  3. “Links are the most important Google ranking factor” – Despite being a vital part of any inbound marketing strategy, backlinks are certainly not the be all and end all when it comes to improving your site’s rankings. There are over 200 ranking factors in total and focusing on one over the other could seriously hamper your SEO goals. These factors relate to mobile usability, user experience, on-page SEO, content marketing and more.
  4. “How many links are we going to get?” – Firstly, it’s important to note that every link building campaign is unique and it is very difficult to quantify in advance. Additionally, having lots of backlinks from low quality websites (DA 10-20) will actually do more harm than good and Google will likely penalise you, affecting your ranking attempts. We often carry out backlink cleanups for clients who have acquired a large number of spammy links historically and submit a disavow for any low-quality links. This then tells Google that they aren’t relevant to the site in question and you would like them to be removed. With that said, any high-quality links (those coming from domains with high authority) are considered good links therefore, the more the merrier in this respect!
  5. “We must only go after links related to our niche” – If your website sits within the travel industry, for example, that does not mean you can only go after links from other domains relevant to your niche i.e. travel related. As mentioned above, SEO advantage comes from receiving links from high authority domains, and that’s not simply the DA. Also important to consider are Citation and Trust Flows, which measure how influential a URL might be as well as how trustworthy the linking page is.

So, to summarise, link building strategies are focused on improving search engine visibility, with a need for quality over quantity and, it’s important to never neglect your internal linking strategies. Backlink acquisition is an ever-changing aspect of SEO and our Digital PR team always ensures that they have their finger on the pulse.

If you want to know more about link building and how it can assist with your SEO goals, contact us here or email [email protected]

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