Link building is one of the key components of a great SEO campaign. It involves gaining a link on another website that can lead its visitors, and search engine spiders, to your website, enhancing your domain authority and web page authority score in the process.

Most links into a website will happen naturally, especially if you regularly post unique, insightful content on your website. However, the most effective way to improve your authority score is to actively seek out industry-relevant, high authority websites to see if they would be willing to provide a link to your domain via one of their web pages.

How Link Building Affects SEO

Backlinks have long played a crucial role in determining a website’s organic ranking on Google. This is especially true from 1998 to 2016 when Google’s Toolbar PageRank displayed the authority score of every website visited on a logarithmic scale from 0-10. This helpful tool allowed webmasters to easily view the authority of their own website, along with the authority score of its competitors, and was frequently used by many SEO specialists within their search engine optimisation campaigns.

Websites that achieved a high PageRank score were deemed to be more trustworthy and, in most cases, this resulted in enhanced organic rankings being achieved on Google.

During the early years of SEO, simply gaining a high volume of backlinks would enable your website to record a healthy PageRank score. This saw many webmasters use ‘blackhat’ SEO tactics, including gaining backlinks in mass via link farms and buying cheap links from low value websites.

As SEO has evolved over the years, the value of backlinks has developed too. No longer can websites achieve positive authority scores by using link farms or buying low quality backlinks. In fact, if this is a tactic that a webmaster or SEO ‘expert’ uses, they will soon find their website being penalised.

It is estimated that around 40% of businesses spend between £1k - £5k on link building per month!

Instead, Google’s sophisticated algorithms places less importance on the number of backlinks that a website has, with it choosing to focus on their quality.

Acquiring one backlink on a higher value, industry-relevant web page will provide your website with a far greater organic ranking benefit than gaining 100 links on low quality domains that have a low authority score and little relevance to your industry.

When utilised effectively, link building can have a hugely positive impact on a website’s organic visibility on Google, Bing, and the other major search engines. This is especially true when a healthy backlink profile sits alongside great on-site SEO.

The key is to remember that having a large number of backlinks is not enough to boost a website’s ranking. Instead, the links must be high-quality, come from reputable sources and, if possible, drive relevant traffic into your website.

Check out our link building dos and don’ts to learn more invaluable tips on building up your website’s link profile and achieve the best authority score that you can.

Link Building in 2023

The overall value of link building has slowly reduced over recent years. This is because the search engines now prefer to provide greater organic rankings to websites that produce high-quality, unique and relevant content to its visitors.

If this is done to a high level, quality backlinks should be gained naturally and with minimal effort on your part. There is nothing more rewarding than acquiring high value backlinks organically, and this is what you should be aiming for when producing your content.

This is not to say that reaching out to industry-relevant websites to see if they would provide a link to your site is not worth doing. It certainly is, though you want to avoid older ‘black hat’ tactics such as gaining backlinks via link farms. They tend to rarely offer any benefit to your online authority score and are actually more likely to hurt your website in the short and long-term.

We would suggest reaching out to other webmasters in the same industry to build relationships with them. This will open up doors to a far greater number of valuable, organic link building opportunities.

Our number one tip though is to focus on creating great content. It is time consuming and can take years to show you its full rewards but there is nothing better than creating fresh, quality content that people will re-use on their own sites. Promote your original content across the various social media platforms and just watch as other webmasters pick it up. Link building at its best in 2023.

Just remember to avoid link farms, link schemes and private blog networks. Gaining a high number of backlinks is a huge no-no and can result in your site being penalised by Google. Not only are you gaining a high volume of backlinks in one go, but the chances are that they will feature on low quality sites in obscure countries around the world. Avoid.

Author – Jamie Edwards. Jamie has over 17 years experience in the SEO industry and has great knowledge of all things search engine optimisation. Connect with Jamie on LinkedIn.

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