Nobody doubts backlinks are very important for SEO. Links are like votes, for search engines, but every vote has a different value. This value depends on many elements and the Pagerank is only one element.
Knowing what makes a link good or not is priceless. These ten tips may worth more than two cents.
- Quality, not quantity. Remember your run is on quality, not quantity. Stop watching how many links you and your competitors have with link: operator on Google (even asking why Google shows low numbers) and others search engines. You have to see which links your main competitors have, and try to get even better. But looking for quality, not quantity.
- Anchor. Nobody doubts anchor text is (still, yes) very important. And it works (Googlebombing still works, yes). But don’t focus on a single keyword; try to get different ones.
- Text around link. A link with text around it looks more natural. Just think about it and you will agree. And don’t forget words give a context to links.
- In topic. Which one would you prefer for your SEO company website? A link from a popular SEO Guide or a link from a popular food blog? Ok, you got it.
- Pagerank matters. A bit. When looking for links, many webmasters and SEOs look at the green bar of Pagerank. But that’s just a number. And neither so much accurate and updated. However, if you want to look at Pagerank, look also at number of links on that page. The more the links, the less the Pagerank distributed with every link.
- No poison words around it (sponsor, adv, etc.). Words like “sponsors”, “advertisers”, “link exchange” and so on are just a way to tell search engines links are not so natural. And they will devaluate those links.
- Different anchor texts. It’s pretty hard all natural backlinks can use the same anchor text, even if it’s the name of the website. Think how people links Google, for example. This is a perfect example, since surely all of these links are natural (does Google need SEO?). Most of them will have “Google” as anchor text. But maybe someone will use “Google.com”. Or “Mr. G.”. Or “Big G.”. Or “Big Brother”. So, when you can decide anchor text on backlinks, try to use different anchor texts, so that links look natural.
- Backlink to internal pages. It’s not natural all of backlinks goes to homepage. And it’s not usefull as well. Using another example: you have a website about fruit; if you can have a backlink on a website talking about apple, you should choose a link to your internal page that talks about apple.
- ODP. Dmoz is the most important directory in the world. So, you should get your link in it. But you can rank well if you are not in it. So, don’t waste your time asking why your site has not been reviewed or when it will be. When your site is done, submit it to ODP and stop thinking about it. Accidently, this is the best way to get your site on Dmoz.
- Language of pages that link to you. Links pass informations about many things like topic, trust, and language. For example, if you have an italian website, don’t get backlinks from english websites, because your site won’t rank on Google.it (and people won’t look for italian keywords on Google.com).