We all know (we do, right?) that inbound links, better known as backlinks are essential to your blog’s popularity. But why?
A backlink is simply a link from another website to yours. Such links are a cornerstone of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The number of backlinks a blog or site has translates to authority with search engines. All search engines, especially the big kahuna to which we all must offer tribute, Google, include backlinks in their algorithms. They give greater credence to sites with a larger number of quality backlinks which translates to more relevant in a search query, and consequently more search engine traffic.
Not all backlinks are created equal.
- Thanks to the contrivances of scammers, sploggers, and link farmers, it’s not enough to just have a high number of inbound links. Links are judged by quality.
- Search engines assess the quality of a backlink by evaluating the content and authority of the linking site.
- The greater the relevance of the content of the linking site to the content on your site, the greater the value of the backlink. Backlinks to your botany site from knitting sites are not relevant as backlinks from flora and gardening sites. The latter links are of a higher quality.
- Authority also plays a role. Backlinks from sites which themselves have a high number of quality backlinks are worth much more than links from sites with less authority.
- Google PageRank depends in part on the number of backlinks a site receives but also the relevance and authority of those links. PageRank factors into the Google algorithm which influences how much Google search traffic a site receives.
- Relevant search engine traffic is a key (and FREE) source of new readers and subscribers. Visitors from search engines are also more likely to click on ads than either regular readers or visitors from social bookmarking sites.
if you’re looking for more readers who want to read exactly what you’re writing, then it’s easy to see why backlinks from relevant, high-authority sites matter. This also explains why blog carnivals matter! Get it?