Backlinks are rated highly by search engines and will rank websites with a high number of inbound link higher in search rankings. Optimising your website to receive backlinks then should be given priority in your SEO strategy.
The problem web owners have is that receiving back links has been restricted by search engines thanks to bad practices within the SEO industry. However, that does not mean it is a redundant exercise altogether.
Here are a few things you can do to improve your chances of attracting inbound links and subsequently improving your search engine standings.
Web design and quality content
Search engines and internet users want good quality sites that provide valuable information. Users also want a website that is easy-on-the-eye and easy to navigate.
In order to attract inbound links therefore, you need to get the basics right and have a website that other people will recommend. Your web design should be clean, attractive, have a professional look and laid out in an orderly fashion so that it is clear how users can find the page they want.
The content that you offer on your website is also important. If you are selling products, provide vital details of the product to readers. Not only will this help convert clicks to purchases, but increases the chances of people sharing together with the page turning up in search engine rankings.
Remove poor links
Search engines also include trust and authority in page rank standings. One method they use of calculating this is by assessing the trust and authority of websites linking into yours.
There is an awful amount of spam content whizzing round the web and your website is probably a target of low-value websites looking to seep spam through the SEO cracks.
If you are receiving backlinks from websites with a low trust and authority level, you will also receive poor form which results in a low page rank. It is good practice therefore to check your backlinks from time to time and remove backlinks from websites with low trust and authority scores.
Off-page link building
On the subject of trust and authority, you need to position yourself as somebody with authority in your industry that can be trusted to provide information of value.
This means you have off-page work to do building an online profile through guest blogging and social media activity. This requires a strategy of its own.
To build an online profile, identify websites that have good trust and authority scores together with a healthy following of readers. The aim is to write for these types of publications on a regular basis in order to raise your profile and position yourself as an expert in your field.
You should be realistic about this step. Aiming for top-rated industry magazines that pay established writers is not going to accept content from a novice who does not have trail of published content.
You should therefore be looking to build an online profile of written content and prove you have expert knowledge in your field together with the ability to write engaging content readers want to read.
You should be aware that building an online profile to attract backlinks is a long-term project, but will have benefits further along the road. It is advisable to start sooner rather than later otherwise your competitors might get to the best publications before you.