Social Media now carries significant weight these days in the passing of link juice to websites, but traditional link building is still a critical factor as the search engines look for balance between the many forms of offsite SEO, and should not be overlooked.
Link building criteria is also continually changing, long gone are the days when a load of cheap links got you a good ranking, there has to be a balance within your link building strategy, where good links take work and bad links cause harm.
How do Search Engines use Links
There are two main ways that search engines use links:
- Discovering new web pages
- To help determine a particular page ranks in their results
Once search engines have crawled a page, they are able to extract content from those pages and add it to their indexes.That way, they can decide if a page is of sufficient quality to be ranked highly. When the search engines to do this, they don't just examine the content of the page, they also take into account the number of links pointing to that page from external sites and the quality of them. The more high-quality links your website has, the more likely you are to rank highly in the search results.
So how do you Know a Good Link from a Bad one?
The most critical factor is the linking site. Sites that reference pornography, gambling or pseudo-medicines are a definite no no. Their content is immediately flagged up by the search engines as less appropriate and should be avoided at all costs. Having a link on a bad site may not just be worthless, but it could incur penalties. The more relevance the content is to your own the better. This doesn’t mean approaching a competitor, but working with websites in a similar field that will have some common words will stand you in good stead.
Is the linking website indexed by Google? By typing site:(domain name) you will be able to tell. If the site isn’t indexed then chances are its new or banned, neither is good. You can verify this by checking the page rank sites that are indexed but carry no page rank are new and the link will carry little or no value.
Is the content on the site regularly updated? Is the content produced by humans as opposed to auto generated (it’s not always so easy to spot, but you can normally tell if you look carefully). Websites that evolve with regular new content will generally carry more weight; this will be passed on to any links you can acquire.
Link building is all about quality, not quantity. Quality comes from the host website, the more relevant it is to your own, the better the link will score. Add in relevant anchor text and hey presto, you start to get some real value.
Find out how Ascensor can help you build better quality links and rank higher in the search results? Get in touch with Ascensors Digital Agency in Leeds today!