What is a backlink?

What is a backlink

A backlink on a website is a fundamental aspect of off-page digital marketing, particularly where search engine optimisation (SEO) is concerned. It should the goal of every single website to build a good amount of solid, high authority backlinks, as this will, in turn, improve the reputation of your own website and help it to perform better on organic search results – which is the main way users find websites and businesses online. 

For those just dipping their toes into the vast world of SEO, they may be asking, ‘what is a backlink?’. On the surface, it is pretty simple, but its implementation can be tricky, and it gets a lot more detailed the further into it you go. 

Why are backlinks important? 

Each backlink you get is almost like a recommendation from a different website that your page is good and has relevant content. It’s almost like a vote. The more you get, particularly if you get them from high authority and well-visited websites, the more trustworthy Google will see your page, resulting in better performance down the line. When thinking about what a backlink is doing for your website, the aim of a backlink isn’t to get users to click through to your link – although that would be a nice bonus! It is predominantly used to improve your website’s reputation.

How to add backlinks

A backlink is an inbound link from a different website linking to yours. This will usually be implemented within the body of the content, with a relevant phrase to the topic of your webpage being highlighted and hyperlinked. Simple stuff. 

However, backlinks can be difficult to implement, especially if you’re just getting started, as it involves getting other websites that you have no control over to link to your page. That can be tricky, as it would usually involve a lot of time contacting blogs and websites and even potentially paying them to implement a link on your behalf. 

When conducting outreach and contacting website owners, it’s important to think about what is a backlink used for from their point of view. A website will usually want to implement backlinks to link to a piece of information that enriches their content and provides additional information. Your website can take advantage of this and provide a link that serves this purpose, making it more likely that they’ll add a backlink for you. 

Another tactic is to look for broken links on other people’s websites. These are links where the page that’s been linked to has either moved domain, been deleted or some other issue that displays a 404-error message. Once found, you can contact the website owner and offer your web pages to replace these broken links, as doing so will improve their website’s performance. 

Furthermore, to add backlinks at a greater scale, you can hire the services of an outreach team who will contact high authority websites on your behalf and implement an expertly crafted link-building campaign.

How to analyse backlinks

Once you get started implementing backlinks, it’s important to analyse them. If you’re thinking, ‘what is a backlink analysis’ it really isn’t that complicated. The analysis looks at some key factors about your backlinks performance to see how useful and impactful it’s being.

Read more: Why is SEO important?

There’s plenty of backlink analysis software available, such as SEMrush and Accuranker, that can automatically assess your links and even suggest which ones need to be improved and replaced. You can compare the best SEO software on our website, at this link. You can also go one step further and get your website audited, where along with checking backlinks, it will also assess your keyword optimisation, technical SEO, internal links, and website structure.