Backlinks: how and why to use them on your website?

Backlinks are simply links placed on one page that can take the reader to another.

V ou can use both internal links (those that drive for your site’s internal page) and external (those pointing to other site).  The combination of these two strategies is called link building.

Contrary to what most laymen imagine, using links to other sites does not generate loss of traffic. Unless you use more than three different pages every 500 words. However, there is no rule, only common sense. If the focus of an article is statistical information, it is possible to relativize this ideal volume of backlinks.

In addition to being harmless for the success of your digital business, they can enhance it. As important as the content, Google itself stated that links are relevant factors for traffic.

By reading this article you will understand how to use backlinks on your website and what benefits to expect!

What are backlinks?

Imagine Google is a person. A suspicious gentleman walking in a mall. Behold, you are faced with a new restaurant. Would I have a meal at the establishment? Probably, I would only go after a referral from someone I trust.

That person who recommended the space is like a new link to your site. The novelty among so many other pages that already rank well in the search engine. But when a portal is pointed to by a reputable one, it tends to remain relevant to search engines.

To give you an idea, it is estimated that 90% of the top 100 websites in the world have more than 2000 backlinks. To find out how many and which ones refer to your page, you can use website analytics tools such as SEMrush.

With the platform, for example, we found that there are 7,700 backlinks to the HeroSpark blog. One of these links is from Exame, which published an article about Passion Economy, In other words, we gained a backlink from the magazine’s portal.

This shows Google that our site offers relevant content and optimizes our search engine position, which helps drive traffic to the blog. You can also see more about it in this video:

Types of backlinks

Visually, the links all look the same. Just words linked to a URL. But behind the scenes, Google ‘sees’ some of them differently. Understand:

  • No follow

No follow links are those that take the visitor to another site, but do not recommend the same to Google, that is, they do not pass through PageRank (an algorithm that measures the importance of a page). So, you should intentionally add the tag reel=”no follow” so that your page doesn’t pass authority to the destination site.

  • Do follow

In contrast, do follow links convey trust because the target content is relevant. In our example with the material in Exame, the link is do follow. Exame has indicated to Google that our page is relevant.

  • Sponsored

Sponsored backlinks are those that have been inserted for a fee, by Google Ads, generally. You create a campaign, fill in the data with your site’s link, and it will appear in your chosen location — such as among ads for high-traffic sites or at the top of a Google search results page itself.

Backlink Quality Grades

We can still order the backlinks in a quality order, from lowest to highest:

  • Toxic

It may happen that you get a link to your site from someone who has broken Google’s rules. This is an example of a toxic backlink. As well as those made by unsafe and/or low-quality sites.

  • User-Generated Content (UGC)

UGC links are often considered no follow links. This is because they are links from comments on social networks, reviews, forums, etc., that is, they are not relevant to the algorithm.

  • High authority

These are links coming from larger domains, such as Exame’s. High authority portals have credibility and share high quality content to their visitors.

  • Editorials

Editorial backlinks are given a lot of trust because the site owner himself attests to the destination link. It occurs when a journalist or a professional webmaster links thinking about the reader’s experience, not by mere ranking, as some sites that practice black hat do.

What are backlinks best practices?

We know it’s impossible (and even unfair) to become influential overnight to get backlinks. So there are also affordable ways to get links to your site:

  • Invest in content

From everything we’ve covered so far, it’s probably clear that the front line of getting backlinks is content. Why would someone recommend your site if you didn’t have anything to share with the public? Or what happened was vague and superficial?

  • Interact with other pages and close partnerships

On the other hand, it’s no use having a wealth of content if you produce it in isolation. Networking is fundamental and this is expressed in guest posting. Send an email showing that you’ve consumed the content of a partner blog, create some material related to that content and propose the link. If the site owner accepts, great, you got a guest post.

  • Discover unlinked mentions

Keep an eye out for content on the internet that mentioned your business but didn’t link to your page. If you find any, ask the person responsible to include the link to your page. They won’t always fulfil your request, but it’s worth a try. Ahrefs is an example of a tool that has this functionality to find mentions.

  • Become a research resource

Think of an unanswered question in your niche and try to answer it with reliable and valuable research. Obtaining validity by conducting this study, by publishing it, you will become an information reference for partners and competitors, thus obtaining backlinks.

Why invest in backlinks?

As already mentioned, backlinks help in ranking. But beyond that, they serve as ways to make Google find new pages, new players with the potential to occupy the first page.

The link building strategy also favours the audience. Whenever you mention a certain subject, with the backlinks, you can guide your reader to deepen and supply curiosity about the subject. In short: you prioritize the user experience.