Importance of Backlinks in SEO Services
What is a backlink
Backlinks are links that go back to your website. It is also known by other terms like inbound link. Backlinks are good indicators of the popularity or the importance of the website. Google give high regard to websites that have a lot of good quality backlinks.
Google considers websites with good backlinks as legitimate ones and more relevant compared to others that appear in the search query.
Search engines like Google would try to figure out the relevance of a keyword to a site and looks at the number of quality backlinks that point back to that site. That is why it is important that no one should be content by having backlinks. What really matters is the quality of backlinks which makes the website relevant to search engines. When there is a backlink pointing to your site and the content on that site is relevant to your own site then it becomes a quality link. The key here is relevance. As the relevance of the content increases; the quality of the backlink increases too.
1. Number of backlinks
- The correlation between the number of backlinks that pages have and their ranking positions is 0.28.
- This is still fairly high, but it has been declining since 2013. And we expect this trend to continue.
- Overall, while pages in the top 30 search results tend to have significantly more links than in previous years – the gap between those in the top position and the rest is narrowing.
2. Referring domains
- The number of different referring domains (i.e. the different sites where backlinks are coming from) was higher for the top 30 search results in 2015.
- This trend is particularly true of large brands as they occupy the top ranking positions and it is here that the growth of referring domains is most clearly visible.
- This makes sense because in general you would assume that a site that has links from a large number of separate sources is more popular (and more likely to be genuinely useful) than a site that has the same number of links from far fewer separate sources.
- Indeed, if all the links came from one or two sources it begins to look a little suspicious and unnatural – perhaps there is some sort of paid linking scheme or an agreement to provide links.
- Alternatively it may be a sitewide link, located in the sidebar or footer of every page – however in this case Google simply counts this as a single link, and one that is generally even less valuable than a relevant and topic-related link from the core content of a page.
3. Backlinks with keyword in anchor text
- The proportion of hard backlinks, which include the keyword in the anchor text, is falling, and this is part of a longer term trend.
- In 2014 29% of backlinks had the keyword in the anchor text – this year it had shrunk to 26% on average (see chart).
- Of course it is natural or normal to have some, but not large numbers of links with a target keyword in the anchor text pointing to a page, for example ‘cheap car insurance’ on a page that offers this.
So the declining proportion of this factor is another consequence of Google’s attempts to prevent link building specialists artificially creating links to boost search rankings.
4. Domain name in anchor text
The percentage of links with the complete domain name in the anchor text is increasing, from 7% to 10% over the last year.
This is because Google realizes that it’s natural for people to use the brand name or URL (e.g. Tesco, Asda.com) when linking to other pages (in particularly, it’s much more natural than links with specific target keywords).
5. Backlinks from news sites
The number of backlinks from news sites to homepages that feature in the top search results is growing. For example, in the top 10 search results the number of backlinks from news sites increased from 333 in 2014 to 522 in 2015.
It seems that Google recognises that the links from news sites are a reliable indicator of quality (it is harder to manufacture false links from online publications) and content freshness.