How To Check Backlink Quality
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Do you remember the days when SEO experts were telling everyone to stuff their blogs with repeated single keywords and to post frantically on a low-quality forum and social media platforms to build backlinks fast? Well, we have some news for you: those days are long gone!
As the world of digital marketing and online content marketing grows, the intelligence behind the search engine results also continues to grow, and it seems that with every algorithm update, Google is getting smarter and smarter.
It’s Good News
While it may seem like there are fewer opportunities to make a fast turnaround monetized site now, it’s good news for the user. Google (and other search engines like Bing and Duck Duck Go) are focusing on providing the user with the best possible results, and Google’s machine learning algorithm is leading the way in this one.
Google describes its approach to measuring site quality in a simple acronym: EAT (Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness). When you look into low and high-quality links and websites, keeping the EAT acronym in the back of your mind will be useful and help you to judge that is low quality and what is of high quality.
Say No to Low-Quality Links
There is no definitive answer to the question ‘what is a good link?’ but a low-quality link is fairly easy to spot. In general, you’ll be looking for:
- Links are from poorly written sources – bad link builders notoriously use text spinners
- Links are from websites that are too generic
- Links are from articles that are too generic or articles that don’t provide any value
- Links that look spammy – E.G. “here is some text visit www.a-website.com for more info”.
- Links are from sites that have nothing to do with your niche – e.g. your website is about camping, and your link is coming from a site about makeup
- Links are from websites that have already been banned
Sometimes, it’s impossible to stop a bad link from appearing. Still, most of the time bad links come as a result of some dubious SEO link building from companies who may tout themselves as “SEO Experts” but may end up doing your site more harm than good.
Say Yes to High-Quality Links
Whilst there is no agreed-upon definition of a ‘good’ link, if we stick to Google’s EAT acronym, it’s easier to score a website and how good of a quality link it is. In general, a good backlink may be a link that is:
- Relevant to your niche or industry
- From a well-respected source
- From a source providing well-researched material
- From an industry expert or trusted figure
- Specific to the link context
If you’re wondering how to check backlink quality for yourself, you’ll be happy to know that many tools will help you see the backlinks your website has gained. Ubersuggest and SEM Rush are two very popular options that offer a limited amount of backlink analysis for free and much more detailed options on their paid-for models.
There are many free tools online that will also give you a great overview of your backlink sources, and you can decide for yourself if they are high quality or low-quality links.
A good tip is to check the Domain Authority of a website if the Domain Authority score of the website is over 40+ this is generally a good score, sites that have a Domain Authority score of closer to or over 100 are typically seen as very trustworthy.
Why It’s Important
In years gone past, the higher the number of incoming links to your website, the further up the search engine results page (SERP) your website would appear. Still, unfortunately, this method was abused by SEO ‘experts’, leading to a bigger crackdown from Google and other search engines.
SEO today is much more focused on quality. The number of these links will still make a difference, and it’s not uncommon for websites that have a higher number to be ranking higher. Still, if another site that had a slightly lower number, but a higher-quality set of incoming links were to appear, it can be rightly assumed that they will climb the rankings of the SERP.
SEO never has and will never be an exact science. Still, it’s worth considering that Google does provide information on how it ranks a website, following this advice closely will put your site in the best possible position to climb up the rankings of the SERP and hopefully win the top spot!