It is beneficial to use several types of links within your overall marketing strategy, including backlinks, external links, and internal links. Backlinks refer to the links that send people to your website. Using external links within your content means you have links to another website (usually done to back up a source), whereas internal links will take your visitors from one page on your website to another.
Search engines like Google view each valuable backlink as a vote of confidence for your site. The more valuable backlinks you gain, the more potential your site has to rank high in relevant search engine results.
However, the keyword in that previous sentence is ‘valuable’. This is because backlinks are not all created equal. To help you determine the value of your links, take note of the differences.
|From websites with a higher domain authority
||Irrelevant websites for your niche/industry
|The website has high volumes of traffic
|Includes an anchor text to your website using important, relevant keywords
||Purchased, unsolicited, or unnatural links
|Links from respected sites with a high PageRank
||Links from suspicious, spammy websites
Backlinks are among the essential elements of any successful SEO strategy. Even though others have attempted to downplay the importance of backlinks – including Google themselves – your organic traffic efforts greatly benefit from having links pointing to your website.
Google’s John Mueller, the webmaster trends analyst, has previously said on a Google+ hangout in 2016 that you shouldn’t focus on link building. The disregard for links led many marketers to carry out studies to see whether external links are necessary and whether they should ignore link building. Marketers proved otherwise – take a look at this study carried out at Moz about external links and the correlation.
This fits with what Mueller went on to say. Google does use links as part of the algorithm, but they used plenty of other factors. Despite being downplayed, this still shows that links are crucial, but the key takeaway is that they shouldn’t be your sole focus. If you can meet multiple factors of the algorithm, you can benefit from using backlinks.
Why do you require a backlink checker?
Backlinks don’t always deliver a positive result for your website. Therefore, a backlink checker is crucial to help your backlink strategy.
Say you have backlinks on poorly ranked websites that are suffering from at least one of these issues:
- Bad anchor list
- Low traffic
- A search engine penalty
- Feature link farms and link directories
- Cover topics like pharma, porn, and online gambling
Due to their notorious reputation with Google, this is going to reflect poorly on your website. Your site will likely get hit with sanctions that see its organic ranking plummet, which is why you must manage your backlinks profile regularly and ensure you delete all unnecessary links from the equation.
Getting started with using a backlink checker
Backlink checkers all have the same standard features to benefit your link building campaign.
Check anchors – a well-organized anchor list helps achieve a higher ranking for your website. This assists the search bots, allowing them to scan your URLs and highlight the keywords relevant to each specific page.
For instance, if you have a landing page about “marketing tactics” yet your anchors are “business accounting” or “buy chocolate online”, the search bots will consider them as spam.
Then, analyze the current tags on your links. If you’ve worked in the world of backlinks before, you’ll be aware that “nofollow” links work exactly as their name suggests – they signal to the search engines not to follow a specific link. While this might seem counterintuitive, it is a useful tactic to stop certain pages on your site from being indexed. They provide your anchor list with a level of diversity, for example, ensuring it doesn’t appear too spammy.
A third way of using a backlink checker is to analyze the quality of domains where your backlink is present. Many checkers feature their rankings in that regard. According to the search engines, the higher the ranking, the more trusted a domain is. This means you can spotlight websites of value for backlinks, while you can also learn which domains are worth skipping in the future.
What are the benefits of using a backlink checker?
There are four main benefits to using a backlink checker, proving just how useful it can be during your marketing campaign.
Avoid focusing on low-quality links
When you conduct your backlink campaign, you’ll be aware of what websites you’re targeting. You will generally know the type of domain authority they possess, making them a suitable candidate for using links.
If you enlist the services of a marketing company, however, there’s less certainty about the value of your backlinks. Yes, you expect quality from an agency that supplies SEO services, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that is what you will receive. They could be inexperienced or might cut corners with their backlink tactics. The result: you end up with low-quality links pointing back to your site.
This isn’t something you want to happen. However, several aspects should be reasonably expected and given from an agency that will prove that you will get high-quality links in return. This includes:
- Complete transparency: The agency you use should be open about the processes and strategies they use. This tells you immediately there is nothing to hide about how they are helping build your links, meaning they should be high-quality.
- Experience: They should have plenty of experience and knowledge of the changing trends in SEO. Experienced agencies will adjust your strategy based on this while still having a point of view on which approach is best for your business.
- Open communication: You should have the chance to get in touch with your agency whenever you need. Agencies should welcome questions or concerns from you.
- Accountability: As you are paying for a service, you expect the agency to be accountable for keeping up with the changing landscape in SEO and deliver in a reasonable timeframe.
- Alignment: You should expect alignment with your agency. They should spend time discussing the campaign’s objectives and help define your goals at the start and throughout the entire process.
With a backlink tracking tool, you can monitor the backlinks you receive from the agency. You can read daily reports and analyze metrics to ensure your link-building efforts are worthwhile. This way, you can avoid spam-like links hindering your marketing efforts.
Get rid of bad links
Once you have identified low-quality backlinks that threaten your site’s standing, it is possible to get rid of these links and remove their negative impact. You may not have much luck contacting the offending webmaster directly, admittedly, but you can use the Disavow Links tool that Google provides.
Just make sure you heed Google’s warning carefully before disavowing backlinks.