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What Small Business Owners Need to Know About Backlinks

What Small Business Owners Need to Know About Backlinks

Starting a business is one of the most rewarding experiences an individual can have. You’ve started a business, and now it’s time to focus on your marketing efforts. In today’s digital world, a large part of your marketing efforts will take place online.

Many people begin their journeys on Google or on an alternative search engine when they’re in search of products or services. This makes it important for small business owners to make sure potential customers can find their businesses online.

One way to accomplish this goal is by mastering the art of search engine optimization. SEO is necessary to assure that search engines notice a website. SEO is also an integral part of any online marketing strategy.

Backlinks are an important aspect of SEO. The problem is that many business owners are not sure what backlinks are. This article will educate business owners about everything they need to know concerning backlinks.

What Is a Backlink?

The simplest definition of a backlink is a link that is embedded on a website and that connects to a page on a second website. These links can be embedded into either text or graphics. Backlinks can be found within headers, footers, banners, article texts, and more locations on a website. For example, if a popular website wants to provide a link for its visitors to a blog entry on your website, this would be called a backlink.

The website owner who generates a high number of these important links will see the result in increased traffic on his or her site. Quality backlinks are the most important resource available to business owners wishing to improve the search engine rating of a website.

Business owners should become familiar with two distinct types of backlinks: no-follow and do-follow links.

The business owner who is concerned with SEO will hear the term “no-follow” links a lot. These links have a less-direct impact on SEO. However, this does not mean that these links will not have some importance to your link profile. No-follow links are easier for a business to acquire and will bring some traffic to a website.

Conversely, a do-follow link transfers a bit of its authority to the website that it provides a link to. A do-follow link must look and feel organic to have the most positive effect on SEO rankings. Search engines must read the link as an addition to relative information that furthers a reader’s understanding of a particular subject matter. It also helps for the link to be embedded in a keyword that feels natural to the reader.

To put it all together, when a high-authority website provides a business owner with a do-follow link, the gesture is great for SEO. However, it should be remembered that even though no-follow links are not as effective at increasing the authority of a website, they can still help SEO efforts in an indirect manner.

Why Backlinks Are Important

Quality backlinks play a major role in how search engines rank a business website, as Atlas Media explains here. Backlinks exercise a great influence over the relevance, popularity, and authority given to a website. The more quality backlinks a business owner is able to get for his or her business website, the better chance the website will have of a high keyword ranking.

A search engine “crawls”’ a website to determine whether the site is relevant. When this happens, crawlers take a good look at both the volume and the quality of the backlinks leading to the website.

Google search engines view backlinks as a vote of confidence from other web sources. A business website that gets plenty of backlinks from other high-authority sites will be presumed by Google to possess quality content. Google will then reward the website with a higher ranking so that this quality content can be shared with people searching for the same or for similar information.

Building Good Backlinks

Now that the important role backlinks play in the SEO of a business is understood, it is time to learn how to go about getting good backlinks.

First, you have to choose keywords that you want to rank for. This article from SEOJet suggests going straight to Google to find out which keywords you’re going to want to use for your business and what sites are currently ranking for them. When you have your keywords selected, it is time to create content.

The creation of quality content that websites will want to link to is the first part of the process. This content can be from a variety of sources that include authority pieces, blog posts, videos, and others. Note: stuffing your content with keywords will ultimately backfire on your SEO efforts. Instead, incorporate keywords into your content in a natural way. The important thing is that the content produced is the highest quality possible. Also, the more of this content that is created, the more opportunity that exists to gain links.

The creation of content alone will not garner many backlinks. The content that is created must also be promoted. One way to promote content is through the use of social media. Good content will be shared by others. The links back to your content will then start to pay dividends. Your network will grow with time and more people will view your content. This will result in even more backlinks.

Links are also available for purchase or sale. Automated platforms exist online to facilitate the market for link trading. However, most SEO experts agree that organic links provide the most benefits to SEO.

Business owners should also interact with major influencers in their industry. This interaction can take place by commenting on other content, by providing shares and links to their own blogs and social media posts, and by interacting on social media.

These major influencers have a lot of followers, and their words carry weight with those who follow them. A share from a website or a social media page with influence on your industry could result in greatly increased traffic and many quality backlinks.

There are also simple backlink options that should not be forgotten. One of the best of these methods is to add company information into directories. This method is extremely effective for businesses registering with local directories. Businesses that register for directories can benefit from backlinks, but they can also benefit from business resulting directly from the directory.

Backlinks for SEO

Backlinks are far and away one of the biggest factors regarding strategies for search engine optimization. If you are a business owner who has not given much thought to building good backlinks, you would do well to begin immediately. The information in this article provides an excellent foundation to begin your research on the matter. You should then steadily increase the number of links to your site until you see the SEO results you desire.

And if you’re wanting to more business advice, read more articles here!

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by Eileen O'Shanassy // Eileen O'Shanassy is a freelance writer and blogger based out of Flagstaff, AZ. She writes on a variety of topics and loves to research and write. She enjoys baking, biking, and kayaking. Check out her Twitter: @eileenoshanassy.

Opinions expressed by contributors are their own.