So backlinks are important... and a good quality website

Matt Cutts was recently asked “Is there a version of Google that excludes backlinks as a ranking factor?”.

[embedyt]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCY30WhI2og[/embedyt]

In his short answer he said that Google had played with it internally but found that by removing backlink relevance the quality of the results looks “much, much worse”.

He went on to say that “even though there’s some noise and certainly a lot of spam, for the most part, are still a really, really big win in terms of quality for search results”.

“So what are backlinks?”, I hear you say. Backlinks, sometimes referred to as incoming or inbound links are when other websites create a link on their website to point back to yours.

But you shouldn’t just go around creating backlinks everywhere to your own website as this is considered spam and will not be looked at well by Google and other search engines.

Instead, good quality links will help your ranking in search engines better.

What makes a good link? Some aspects are:

  1. Make sure it comes from a relevant or trusted source.
    What do we mean by this? Certain websites are considered trusted because it’s more difficult to get links from these websites. For example, the BBC or national newspapers, government or related websites, etc…

    Relevant sources are more difficult to quantify. For example, a link from a web forum about the latest games to a local taxi company would be less relevant (and might be considered spam) than a link from a local hotel to the taxi company as a reputable taxi firm to use in the area.
  2. Good anchor text on the link.
    The text used on the clickable link has a factor too. Using keywords/phrases that you want to be found for would be better than just “website” or “click here”.

    Our example taxi firm could use text like “taxis from Townsville to the airport” or “taxis from Townsville to LocalTown”. Having all the links with the same anchor text can look unnatural so having some variations is good.
  3. Links in text blocks.
    If a link is part of a larger block of text instead of on its own, especially if the link is near the start of the block, it’s considered important by the author of the text so is considered a more important link.

And finally… having a good website behind it.

Having lots of good quality backlinks to your website doesn’t help much if a visitor gets to your website and leaves straight away. Having a good quality website which is easy to navigate and gives important and eye-catching information about you and what you can for them is just as important.

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