Why backlinks are important for ranking
Before we get started, let’s determine what a backlink is. Basically, it is a link to a blog placed on an external source. Backlinks are crucial for making a good SEO campaign because they indicate how popular the website they direct traffic to is. Also, Google search backlinks are the only thing that can introduce a new blog to the world. How else can people find it among thousands of websites on the internet?
Therefore, search engines prefer to show websites that have a larger number of backlinks, because it shows their credibility. However, bloggers make a common mistake by thinking that the more backlinks a website has, the higher it is ranked. Search engines don’t just check website backlinks and add them up. There is a complex algorithm which selects only the most valuable backlinks. In the next paragraph, we’ll see what factors influence the credibility of backlinks, and what number you should strive towards.
How many backlinks do I need
Basically, the more backlinks you have, the better the SEO of your website is. However, it concerns only high-quality backlinks. The exact number of backlinks depends on the size of the company and the level of competition. For low competition keywords, a few backlinks will be enough, while a very popular topic will need to build a much bigger network.
Talking numbers, forty to sixty backlinks will be good to start an SEO campaign for a small enterprise. However, it doesn’t mean that placing this number of backlinks is all. It is important to keep getting the word out to not let competitors take over.
Now, let’s see what criteria determine how many backlinks a website should have.
One of the backlinks ranking factors is the level of competition for particular keywords on the market. If they have low competition, there is no need for many backlinks, but in the case of high competition, the more backlinks one has, the higher their blog is among the search engine results. To check the level of competition, type the keywords in Google and take the first ten results. Check the number of links pointing to every page with a backlink counter software (except for the pages with the highest and the lowest number), add up the results and divide them by eight. This outcome is the average number of backlinks you need to have to enter the top 10 search results for your keywords. At least, it is one of the ways.
Another important thing is the quality of backlinks. Frequently, bloggers consider only their number and forget about the value, which results in useless activities. Always remember that the aim is to create the right balance between the number of backlinks and their quality. Search engines analyze the quality of the content on the website and then evaluate the link. One quality backlink for ranking is better than dozens of links with a lower quality. To make them valuable, consider the following aspects:
- Links should come from a reliable and relevant source, which contains a lot of useful resources and information so that these links can look solid and not paid for.
- The content of backlinks referring domains should be related to the blog thematics.
- A web page matters as well, it should have PageRank and a few other backlinks.
- The link should send you traffic.
- Linking cannot be reciprocal: there shouldn’t be any backlink to the first source on the website. If you place backlinks from one of your websites to another, be aware that Google checks IP addresses, and it can’t be the same address for both websites in this case.
- It can be a link to your other backlinks.
So, if your backlink meets these criteria, it is likely to be considered valuable, and it might improve your position among the search results.
Even if you manage to get backlinks from reliable sources, there is still some work to do so that this relevance won’t be undermined by poor content on the blog. Basically, a well-optimized website is a niche-working platform with a minimum of useless content. Optimization helps make it more attractive for both users and search engines, but the difference between them is that users like smart design and beautiful pictures, while search engines judge from the technical standpoint.
To begin, check whether your website fulfills these requirements:
- The interface should be easy to use, and all the pages should be easily accessed. The most important articles can be one or two clicks away from the homepage, while other materials should be five clicks away maximum. The closer a page is to the homepage, the higher is its value.
- Then, you need to check whether there are any broken links and URLs on your website and fix each one of them.
- The quality of content is crucial, as well as the page layout. Each one should contain a title and a description. Also, pay attention to the formatting of texts and their readability.
- Think of adding a sitemap to make the navigation on the website easy.
- Add in-content links.
These are only a few steps that you need to take to optimize your website. Some of the things you can do once, and that will be enough, while it’s better to repeat other steps every once in a while.
Our SEO specialist Oleg Mishyn gave us a detailed explanation of the matter at hand. Basically, the number of backlinks depends on the type of request, and ranking is calculated differently. For example, text relevance and its age are very important for ranking informative materials, while backlinks don’t have much of an influence for the blog promotion. On the other hand, it is crucial to provide commercial keywords with backlinks.
Another important factor is the level of competition for keywords. If you go toe-to-toe with your rivals in other aspects, a higher number of backlinks can help you outrun others.
There are special platforms allowing to estimate the approximate number of backlinks. It shows how many links competitors have for one domain or the exact page. For example, you can analyze 10 other blogs and calculate the average number of links, necessary for bringing your text to the top three search results.
If you don’t aim that high at the moment and simply want to raise the position of your blog little by little, checking the number of backlinks your rivals have will do good anyway. Especially, the ones who’ve recently published materials. As for the timing, the results will be visible in two to three months after placing backlinks.
Other ways of promoting your blog
There are many other ways to get the word out and promote a blog. In this part of the article, we’ll discuss what can attract more traffic to a website, whether it is a new resource or some new material on the blog.
This option is good to let readers know about a new article. Just use your email list and send out a letter with a backlink to the post. This is a great way of generating traffic for new materials from the very beginning. To make followers proceed to reading, write a captivating description. Tell them why they should read this article, but keep the text short. Visuals are a tricky thing. They catch attention but also are often considered spam. Another option is to send out email newsletters combining the latest news in the niche and your updates. In this way, the information will definitely be useful for readers.
- Social media marketing
Today, social media is the most popular place for people to share their opinions and get the latest news. Why don’t use it to your advantage and share the post on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Google+ and other platforms? It’s possible to make a post once, right after publishing new material, or a few times to let everyone know.
Many bloggers collaborate with each other to promote their content. Thus, you can reach out to those who’ve already shared similar materials, provided your texts are of higher quality. In return, you can mention the names of influencers in your future articles, which will be an advertisement for them.
- Guest posts
Try guest blogging. Write an article for another website in exchange for a backlink to your blog. This promotion method becomes more and more popular because it allows for interaction between different companies, their mutual development, sharing useful information and yes, the promotion itself. Writing guest posts for reliable sources can build credibility for your name and get the word out about your blog.
How many backlinks do you need
Getting backlinks for a blog is crucial for its successful promotion. If you ask yourself how many backlinks do I have to place, there is no clear answer: it all depends on the size of a business and the quality of the content. To rank high among search results, a blog should have some backlinks, but to make every link count, you need to provide quality content, optimize your website and place links only on reliable sources with relevant materials. Thus, outperforming your competitors will be easier than ever!