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What is a Backlink?

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This is a question that many people have asked, and it's not surprising. Backlinks are a very important part of SEO, and they can be difficult to understand if you're not familiar with them.

In this article, we'll discuss:

If you are looking for backlink support, book a free consultation with our team at Marketing Optimised below:

Backlinks explained

A photo showing an example of what a backlink looks like between two websites

In simple terms, a backlink is a link from another website that points back to your website. This link acts as an endorsement or recommendation of your content and provides a way for visitors to get to your site. They are also referred to as external links, inbound links, or incoming links.

As your website ages, backlinks are often created as other sites link to content on your website. This can happen naturally, but more often than not the website owner must actively pursue backlink opportunities.

For SEO specialists, acquiring high-quality backlinks is a key aspect of any successful SEO campaign and can be one of the most frustrating aspects of the job.

Types of backlinks

Yes, there are types of backlinks. For example, there are dofollow and nofollow types of backlinks. Dofollow links pass the "juice" from one website to another and boost the rankings on search engine results pages (SERPs). Nofollowed links don't pass any link juice and aren't as valuable in terms of SEO value.

Here are some of the different types of backlinks and their importance:

  • Inbound/outbound links – These types of backlinks are the most valuable types as they demonstrate to search engines that a website is reputable.

  • Authority links – Links from high authority websites provide more weight than lower-tier sites.

  • External/internal links - Links between different websites and to other pages on the same website are types of backlinks.

  • Paid/free links – Paid links are considered high quality and should be used sparingly as they can get you into trouble with search engines if not done correctly.

Type of backlink authority scores

Even when you do get a backlink, the quality of the link matters too. Authority scores are a way of measuring the value of a backlink based on its source. Higher authority websites will have higher scores, while lower authority websites will have lower scores.

Each backlink is broken down by scores from 0-100 and can be seen on various marketing systems used by SEO specialists to track backlinks.

An image showing an example of domain authority scores with backlinks

An example of a high-authority backlink would be one from a website like Forbes, while an example of a lower-authority backlink would be one from a low-level blog.

How to get backlinks

Getting backlinks can be one of the most time-consuming and challenging parts of SEO. It's important to research the sites you want to get links from before submitting a request to ensure they’re trusted and reliable sources.

There are a variety of ways you can get backlinks, such as:

Guest blogging

Guest blogging refers to writing quality content and pitching it to webmasters in exchange for a backlink.

Guest webinars

Hosting a webinar allows you to showcase your expertise while getting quality backlinks from the event's sponsors and other attendees.

Leveraging influencers

Reaching out to influencers can be an effective way to get quality backlinks as they have a large following and can help spread the word about your website.

Reaching out to webmasters.

Reaching out to webmasters

Contacting quality websites and asking for backlinks can be an effective way to acquire quality links. However, you must make sure that the quality of the link is good before pursuing this strategy.

Creating viral content

Creating a quality, sharable content can be an effective way to build quality backlinks as others will link to your content if it resonates with their audience.

Posting regularly on social media sites.

Social media is a great way to get quality backlinks when you post quality content that people want to share.

Posting regularly on social media sites

Posting quality content on social media sites is a great way to build quality backlinks. Sharing quality content that resonates with your audience will encourage others to link back to your site.

A reminder that you cannot buy backlinks – buying links violates Google’s webmaster guidelines and will result in penalties.

See some of googles information and guidelines here.

How backlinks help your SEO

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Acquiring backlinks is one of the most important aspects of SEO. By having quality backlinks from reputable sources, webpages can rank higher on SERPs and attract more visitors to the website.

Backlinks act as a vote for your web pages, telling search engines that other websites are recommending your content. This increases the value of the web pages in terms of SEO and is an important part of any successful SEO campaign.

Backlinks also help webpages gain authority and trust from search engines, which can improve the rankings and visibility of webpages in SERPs.

Moreover, backlinks can help web pages gain traction and improve brand recognition. As webpages link to your content, more people will be exposed to your website and become familiar with your brand.

Caution with certain backlinks

It’s important to practice caution when acquiring backlinks, as some links can be harmful. Low-quality or spammy links from untrustworthy sources can cause a website to suffer penalties from search engines.

A photo showing an example of a backlink audit report
An example of a backlink audit report

To avoid this, focus on getting quality backlinks from trusted and authoritative websites. This will ensure that your website is seen as trustworthy and credible by search engines.

An image showing a backlink review panel

An anchor text, also known as a link anchor or anchor tag, is the clickable text in a hyperlink that can be optimized for specific keywords. It's important to use anchor texts wisely when building backlinks as they are used by search engine algorithms to determine how relevant a website is for certain keywords.

Getting started with backlinks

Building backlinks is a difficult and tedious process, but it's an essential part of SEO. It’s important to start by understanding the types of backlinks, researching potential sources for links, and actively pursuing backlink opportunities. With patience and perseverance, webpages can gain valuable backlinks that will help them rank higher in SERPs.

What's your take on backlinks?

  • They're essential for SEO

  • They're overrated and don't really help

  • I'm not sure what they are

We recommend you seek an SEO specialist to ensure you are getting the best out of your web pages.

An SEO specialist has the tools and knowledge to track current backlinks, identify new opportunities, and monitor webpages for success but make sure you find one that is reputable and follows all webmaster guidelines.


Backlinks are an essential part of SEO, and they can play a major role in improving the visibility of web pages. It’s important to be strategic when building backlinks, as low-quality or spammy links can cause more harm than good.

By following link-building strategies and focusing on quality over quantity, websites can gain the backlinks they need to climb search engine rankings and gain more organic traffic.

If you need help with your backlink strategy, speak to us at Marketing Optimised as we can help you grow your SEO. We can provide tailored solutions for link building and anchor text optimization.


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