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What’s all this hoopla over backlinks? Every SEO forum and blog you drop by is constantly touting the power and necessity of backlinks they need to be a pretty big deal! So what exactly is a backlink? To put it simply, a backlink is really a link on another website (external) leading to a page on your own website. For instance, a link on this page to a page on another website would be a backlink for THAT webpage.

How do Backlinks Help us Rank?

Think of it like this: backlinks are human citation. In a way, we decide what pages we, as internet surfers, want to arrive in the SEARCH ENGINE Pages (SERPs) by linking to this content we like. A page with more links of an increased quality than others will rank higher. The part about quality is actually important. It’s not just about who gets the most backlinks it’s about where those links are from.

If you were trying to lose weight, would you be more inclined to trust the opinion of some Joe Shmo or from the professional health expert? This principle is applied to backlinks and the way they affect our rankings. Links from sites which are established as authorities (like the health expert) carry much more weight than a link from someone commenting in a fitness forum somewhere. Google weighs out these links and their value using their complex algorithm and uses this data to decide how to rank your website/webpage. Your website does not have to be a monster authority site to rank highly. Rather, you can rank highly by getting top quality backlinks from other authority sites.

Let’s pretend that the health expert from earlier told us that Joe Shmo actually made some good points and his opinions are quite valid. Wouldn’t we start to trust Joe Shmo more and see more value in his opinion? Similarly, if an authority health site associated with Joe Shmo’s small niche site, Google would recognize that maybe Joe’s site is more authoritative they realized, and they would rank it higher. The net is not controlled by computers. It is run by people, which is reflected in the manner we act and link online. Search Engines know this and respond accordingly to attempt to give us the results that we demand and construct ourselves.

Just how do we get Backlinks?

Now that we know the importance of backlinks and just why they affect our rankings the direction they do, we need to figure out how we can get some. A full answer to this question might take some hundreds of pages, so we’re going to take a broad view of some backlinking strategies to get a good idea of the way to get quality backlinks.

Sadly, backlinking isn’t as simple or self-explanatory as our health expert example above. You are not so likely to be granted a web link from some powerful authority such as for example CNN or Apple just for creating great content. Our techniques are going to have to be a bit more guerrilla-esque. This isn’t to state that the quality of your content doesn’t matter, it’s quite the opposite. At the core of your promotion and backlinking strategy ought to be great, quality content. We’ll assume you already know how you can make great content and get on with the backlinking.

There are many different ways to get backlinks and each of the methods takes time to understand and master. Rather than getting super-in-depth with any single backlinking strategy, I’ll provide you with a list of ways to get backlinks. We will continue this SEO course by covering the governing principles of backlinks and how to measure their quality – knowledge you can apply to each and every backlinking method successfully. Here is a comprehensive list of ways to get backlinks:

Free blogs (blogger, wordpress, squidoo)

Profile backlinks

Blog commenting

Article Marketing

Press releases

Social Bookmarks

Website directories

Blog Carnivals

Video marketing

Forum Commenting

Document Distributors

Podcast Directories

Software Distributors

Each of these methods could be deeply explored to attain the best results. Because of this SEO Course, we are instead going to cover the factors that produce a great backlink.

Anchor Text

Anchor text may be the clickable text in a hyper-link. For instance, if you look at the links in the resource box for this article, one of them gets the anchor text “SEO Course” while the other simply has my website’s URL as the anchor text.

Anchor text is quite powerful and has a big impact on how effective a backlink is. Anchor text gives search engines a quick glimpse of what the page on the other side is going to be about, so you want to use your keyword along with other keyword variations as often as possible. Google and other SEs consider the text closest to a link to decide what it’s about, and in essence, your anchor text is technically the closest text to the hyperlink (it’s the link!). You won’t always have the option to use anchor text, but don’t give up an opportunity when one occurs.


Relevance is another factor that decides how effective a backlink is. Relevance really is the name of the overall game with regards to ranking in the various search engines. backlinks Google says over and over again, their goal is to provide the most relevant search results. This means having relevant content and having relevant backlinks pointing to your articles. A relevant backlink is apparently very relatable to your keyword. The same factors that make any page relevant to a keyword are the factors that would create a backlink relevant to your keyword. For instance, an article with a good keyword density for the keyword as well as your keyword in your anchor text will be pretty relevant. To improve the relevance of any backlink you should use proper anchor text, surround the link with relevant text, and use a relevant title if possible.


The effect of PageRank on you rankings is often completely overrated. The honest facts are that PR isn’t that important in how you rank for your keyword. It really is but one of over 200 factors that affect your rating and its value is frequently exaggerated. It’s always better to get backlinks from high PR pages when you’re able to, but don’t place too much importance on it.

One really obvious misconception is that if the home page of a site has a high PR, then any page you get a web link from on that domain is going to pass a great deal of PageRank. For example, individuals who sell link packets sometimes tout how they have high PR forums you may get links from. This doesn’t make any sense at all because your link is not going to be on the house page. It is called PAGE Rank, not SiteRank – it’s right in the name! If you create a profile link on any forum, it will likely be on your new profile page with a PR 0. Getting links from High PageRank pages (pages – not sites) is great and definitely helpful, but it isn’t the holy grail to ranking.