Link building is the core of SEO and the number of quality backlinks decides the ranking of your website on search engines. However, there is going to be much more when you scratch the surface. First things first, you need to understand that all backlinks are not equal in terms of value. One high-quality backlink can deliver more value than multiple low-quality ones. The debate related to the choice between quality and quantity of backlinks has always been baffling SEO practitioners and it is still hard to find a definitive answer. Let us try to compare these two aspects thoroughly and understand what matters more- quantity or quality!
What are backlinks and why do they matter?
First things first, you need to understand what backlinks are and what link building is all about. Link building refers to the process of manually creating links to a website, page or content piece. These are important for a website because Google considers them as one of the top three ranking signals it uses to allocate search rankings. Essentially, Google uses backlinks to determine the authority of a website and ranks it accordingly. It is obvious that a high authority site will occupy a higher position and vice versa.
The authority of a backlink depends on the webpage it is connected with. Simply speaking, if you are able to link with a high Domain Authority website, this link will elevate your website’s authority as well. The greater the number of high DA sites you are able to link with, the higher your own DA becomes. The higher DA you are able to achieve, the better is the search ranking of your website. So now you probably understand the significance of backlinks of your website.
Quantity or Quality: What is more important?
Now that you know how important backlinks are, the next concern would be to build ones that will offer extensive benefits. The biggest question in this context is whether you should prioritize quality or quantity. Let us explain both aspects in detail.
Quantity: Focusing on high volume of backlinks
Years ago, webmasters focused on building as many links to websites as possible. The tactics they followed for this purpose included using link directories, commenting on blogs and having site-wide footer links. The common mindset was that a website would rank higher if it had a high volume of links. However, things have changed over the years and the number of links has become a less influential parameter.
Search algorithms have evolved and search engines prioritize the relevance of backlinks while allocating website rankings. Any link that is unnatural is likely to do more harm than good because Google can easily identify irrelevant, spammy and sponsored links and penalize them as well. The links coming from unrelated and irrelevant blogs and websites are most susceptible to facing flak.
While relevance is one aspect that matters, the rate at which links are acquired is also a key factor for Google. Natural links come at a slow pace, with a few bursts once in a while. However, if you get hundreds and thousands of links to your website every month, this is regarded as something unnatural. So you can expect to be penalized for the wrong practice. With these facts, it becomes clear that the quantity of backlinks is not such a vital ranking parameter.
Quality: Prioritizing high-quality backlinks
Search engines are smarter than ever now. They are capable of understanding user intent, link relevance, and linking patterns. This means that marketers also need to get smarter and devise a new method to keep pace with the search engines. The key lies in acquiring backlinks from trusted sources that have higher PageRank or are considered to be authoritative resources, rather than getting them from every possible source.
Gaining a link from a high authority website has a host of benefits. It naturally makes your website more trustworthy for Google as well as users. Secondly, the content on these websites gets exposure to niche relevant audiences, which could translate into quality traffic for your website. Most importantly, such links provide a much-needed boost to the authority of your site and propel it higher on search rankings.
Considering these facts, it becomes obvious that the quality of backlinks you build for your website matters more than the number. Now that the answer is clear, you can steer your link building strategy in the right direction and get better results with the right approach. Rather than investing efforts in building hundreds of low-quality backlinks that won’t do any good, why not do your best in acquiring a few good ones that would be worth the effort!
Tips to build quality backlinks to your website
Whether you are just starting with your link building campaign or looking to enhance an existing one, here are a few tips that can help you build quality backlinks.
- Prioritize relevance over everything else. If you are selling beauty products, don’t pitch a home décor blog, rather opt for a fashion blog.
- Be smart with your prospecting and pitching. When you contact someone for acquiring a link, keep your pitch genuine. Focus on convincing them with quality content offerings rather than flattery.
- Bring diversity in your link building strategy by using a mix of guest posting, social media posts and commenting on websites.
- Abstain from illegitimate practices like buying backlinks and link exchanges because you will be penalized sooner or later.
- Don’t be afraid of rejection because you may need to do a lot of hard work for every single quality backlinks but the results will be rewarding enough to justify the effort.
More than anything else, focus on building links with the kind of content which users would want to read, share and talk about. Also, remember that link building is all about consistency and perseverance because you may not get results instantly. Follow the niche leaders patiently so that you may win quality backlinks from them sooner or later. This may take time but the results you get would probably be awesome enough to take your website to the top.