Search engines understand linking to a website as a sign that its content is valuable. As this is a positive signal, backlinking strategies are among the most important ranking factors. That’s also why link building done right can be a successful SEO strategy.
There are two main kinds of linking: inbound and outbound. When others like your content or find your website useful and link to it, it’s called “inbound linking” or “backlinking”. The more people consider your website trustworthy and show it through linking to it, the stronger its reputation gets.
You can also link to other websites in order to substantiate your claims with reputable sources. Traditional referencing in writing is similar. It’s natural that you don’t know everything and need to get knowledge from somewhere. You have to mention that and online this is done through adding links. The marketing term for it is “outbound linking” or “external linking”.
Unfortunately, some people knowingly and unknowingly abuse linking to manipulate ranking. Overdoing it and using questionable strategies isn’t only frowned upon. It can also get you penalised by search engines. This blog post will help you avoid such issues and explain how agency linking is done right.
We discussed above why backlinking to someone’s website is considered a good thing. It was equally true years ago when SEO was just becoming a thing. Some people figured out that paying for linking to their websites was a sure way to success.
Google realised that there was an opportunity for abuse there. They introduced the Penguin update and websites got penalised for bad backlinking. “What are these bad backlinks?” you may ask. In brief, these are inbound links coming from not reputable websites. Of course, they need to look unnatural in order to get your website in trouble.
What looks like link manipulation is against Google’s guidelines and may get you penalised. No real SEO specialist would suggest it today, as this is far from what’s considered best practices. Staying user-friendly and not trying to outsmart search engines is the way to go. To get backlinks you should write great content and put yourself out there.
What to do if you’re worried that you may have some linking issues on your website? You should go through your links as soon as possible. This can be harming your other SEO efforts. You can find out more about how to disavow links to your site from Google Search Console.
Linking to other websites of poor quality also may hurt your website. This is something you should keep in mind when writing content and mentioning sources. Your website content will also be better if you only look for stats or data that aren’t questionable.
Another risk of outbound links is when someone who’s worked on your website has linked from your website to theirs. That could happen if a web designer, a marketing consultant or an agency worked on your website. If it was a while back, remember that what used to be considered acceptable may no longer be such.
It’s understandable why a service provider may want to encourage others to use their services. Adding linking to your website improves their portfolio and can bring them clicks. This is beneficial to them and harmless to you if done right. One link from the footer or a sidebar mentioning them as the person behind your website is almost certainly safe. However, multiple links can harm both your and their website.
Let’s put it in context. While interlinking can be beneficial it can also raise virtual eyebrows of search engines. If you own a business called DogsToys.com linking to and from other dog related businesses and service providers makes sense. It brings value to your visitors and visitors of these websites. On the other hand, multiple links to a digital agency all over a website about canines look suspicious.
Final Linking Tips
Make sure that any linking on your website added by yourself or someone who’s worked on it is according to Google Guidelines and SEO best practices. SEO is a 1% game! To give your visitors the best user experience and keep search engines happy you should stick to this threshold.
Are you scared that you’re missing some linking issues or overdoing something? Don’t waste time and contact Digital Assembly today! We will audit your website to find any issues and provide you with top-notch digital marketing services to fix them.