Our clients’ websites contain lots of content writing rich in keywords and links that help their customers (or potential customers) find the firm more easily or engage with the people who run it. That is all fantastic, but businesses that really thrive create other ways to get to them from outside their website and associated social media sites. They piggyback onto other websites using what our industry calls “backlinks.”
What is Backlinking?
Backlinks are connections to a website – say, YOUR website – implanted into other website content or as footnotes on websites that are not your own. These could be websites for companies you support (for example, if you run a hotel in Memphis, you are probably listed in the local Chamber of Commerce directory as long as you are members), or run by people you know or helped at some time, (you may own a restaurant that the local B&B sends people to, so you might be listed on their website), or they might be related businesses. Owners of these firms are willing to lead consumers to your product because it does not compete with theirs and because they approve of it.
In some instances, links turn up in places which do not sell anything. An individual simply writes about topics she’s passionate about and sees value in what you carry so she is willing to promote your product. In other cases, the backlink is part of advertising so the host is paid for this service. Finally, affiliate marketers carry links to sales pages which are embedded with their details so that they earn a percentage of sales linked back to their forum post or article.
Backlink Dos and Don’ts
The internet (or rather, the search engines) will punish or reward backlinks according to where they turn up, and fortunately, this is a part of the industry that we at the Tennessee SEO Guy are well-versed in. For example, a link found on a site that is not maintained doesn’t do you any good. This is bad housekeeping and associates you with a company that has gone under or was a scam. A backlink found somewhere silly is also detrimental to ratings. An example would be posting a link for organic vegetable seeds on your buddy’s concrete sales and service website.
Backlinks can do you a world of good, however, if sites are specially selected for suitability. Customers should be linked back to your seed sales business from a WordPress site promoting city gardens or a website selling gardening tools. Backlinks should be established in lots of places, found inside of PPC ads or key word writing, and always on sites that are themselves running an ethical and professional marketing campaign.
Keeping Track of Connections
You might not know where all of these links are. Someone might have created the link without your knowledge, potentially raising or lowering your search engine ranking potential. Let one of the experts we have here at the Tennessee SEO Guy offices help you find out how many links are out there and where they are located. This will give you the information needed to take action if necessary. There is software dedicated to finding backlinks plus ways of evaluating these links.
Once you know what is happening out in the internet ether, let us help you correct any errors that might be dragging you down to page 2 of results and get you onto page 1. Add more backlinks or get rid of dead weight as we may advise.