What are backlinks?

“Join our database of 30,816 businesses and build quality backlinks to your site!”

We’ll bet money you’ve had one of those emails. Trying to sell you backlinks.

But what is a backlink? What does it actually mean, and why does it matter? 

Backlinks, also known as inbound links or incoming links, are links from other websites that point “back” to your website. In the world of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), backlinks play a crucial role in improving a website’s visibility and ranking in search engine results. But they have to be half decent to work. Surprise, surprise, buying backlinks from these emails ain’t gonna do anything for you!

When a search engine, such as Google, crawls a website, it uses backlinks to determine the relevance and authority of the site. If a website has many high-quality backlinks from reputable sources, search engines consider it to be a more credible and authoritative source of information. The general idea is “high quality websites, and credible sources of information, link to other high quality websites and other credible sources of information.” This is why buying backlinks doesn’t work – because those sites are not high quality, and they won’t drive high quality traffic to your site.

This bit may be obvious (but we’ll mention it just in case), backlinks also drive traffic to a site. When a user clicks on a backlink on another site and is directed to your website, it’s considered a referral from the linking site. More traffic = higher chance of leads = higher chance of a new client.

Here are a couple of ideas for getting yourself some decent backlinks to your site:

Create valuable and shareable content

As much as possible, try to make your content EERIE:

It can be tricky to create content that nails all of those, but try to tick off as many as possible. This will mean other websites are more likely to link to it, and your followers are more likely to engage with you (as they have something to engage with!).

Guest blog post swaps

Guest blog post swaps are fantastic ways to get credible and quality backlinks to your site. They’re also a great way to build and strengthen your network.

Try contacting other companies or individuals who offer complementary services to your own. For example, we’ve done a blog post swap with our preferred social media chap. Lots of people who want a website, or need help online, need help with social media platforms we don’t work on (such as TikTok). So we did a blog post swap with RMK Marketing. This helped strengthen our relationship, and also gave both parties useful backlinks!

By acquiring high-quality backlinks from reputable sources, you can improve your website’s credibility and authority, attract more visitors, and ultimately boost your SEO. There are other types of links as well, which we’ll briefly mention here:

External links

External links are links that go from your site to somewhere other than your site.

They’re important because – as we’ve said – high-quality pages usually link to other high-quality pages. This will help search engines determine the usefulness and quality of your content. For example, you could link to studies done by any governing bodies you’re a member of in order to back up what you’re writing in a blog post. 

Internal links

Internal links are links that go somewhere on your website.

These help search engines to find and then index your content. For example, link to your contact us page, or other blogs you’ve written on a similar subject.

If you want to find out a bit more about SEO then read our crash course on it here (wasn’t that a nice inbound link for us?). If you need a bit more help with nailing your SEO then drop us a message. We’re not an SEO agency, but we partner with a fantastic lady who does it full time, and we’d be delighted to introduce you! 

To summarise

Web links can be leveraged in various ways, though backlinks tend to be the most powerful. Working to establish high quality backlinks will pay big dividends for your site. 

Try working with your network to build relevant and mutually beneficial backlinks. They aren’t the be all and end all, and there’s certainly an argument that their impact has reduced somewhat in recent years, but they are still an incredibly powerful tool in improving your SEO and building your site’s authority. 

We’re always open to the idea of building backlinks with our network. If you’d like to explore the idea of a blog post swap then please get in touch, and let’s see if there’s a natural fit.