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How Do Backlinks Affect Your Website’s Google Rank?

Posted by Catherine Hatch on Tue, Aug 21, 2018 @ 11:32 AM

backlinksAlmost every aspect of your website has an effect on its SEO. One of the most important ranking factors to Google is your website’s authority in your industry and its reliability. In order to test these factors, Google surveys other websites and finds out which sites are linking to yours. We’ve broken down all the ways in which backlinks to your site can affect your website’s Google Rank.


Number of Linking Domains

The number of domains linking to your site is one of the most important ranking factors in Google’s algorithm. The more domains that link to your site, the more authoritative you appear to Google. Therefore, the more domains that link to your site, the higher your rank will be on Google for your target keywords.

Linking Domain Age

The age of the domain of your site’s backlinks has an impact on your site’s SEO and the value on which Google places them. Older domains can be more powerful than newer ones, as Google sees them as more trustworthy. Therefore, backlinks from older domains will help your ranking more than newer sites.

Number of Links From Class-C IP’s

The general number of links will improve your search rankings, but, more specifically, the number of links from separate class-C IP addresses can affect your Google rank. Links from class-C IP’s suggest a wider breadth of sites linking to you, making your site appear more reputable and reliable. The more reliable your site appears to Google, the better your rank will be.

Number of Linking Pages

The number of domains that link to your site is an important part of your site’s rank, but the number of actual pages, even within the same domain, can have an impact as well. The more pages that link to your site, the better your rank will be. However, individual pages do not hold the same weight for Google as separate domains.

Backlink Anchor Text

The anchor text that links to your site is an important consideration for Google. The text can help Google understand what your page and website are about, as anchor text is typically an accurate description of your page. If your target keywords appear in backlink anchor text, it can help improve your page’s rank for that keyword. Anchor text can impact your site’s rank because it will help Google get a quick overview of the content of your page.

Alternate Text

Alternate text, or alt text, is a description of your image that allows search engines to understand, in words, the content of an image. Often times, other websites will include an image from your site on theirs, with a link to your site when a user clicks on that image. When the alt text on this image accurately describes the image or your page, it can improve the search ranking for target topics, especially when the alt text includes a keyword. Alt text on linked images provides another opportunity to provide context for your site and improve your ranking.

Authority of Linking Domains

The number of domains linking to your site is important, but Google also takes the authority of these domains into account. Sites that Google sees as experts in the field will hold more weight than less known sites. The ranking of linking domains on Google can help you determine the weight that they will hold for Google. Additionally, pages that are considered “hubs,” which are top resources on certain topics, hold more weight than smaller, less known sites. The reliability and authority of the domains that link to your site help Google determine the reliability and authority of your own site, impacting your ranking respectively. 

Links From Competitors

Links from domains in the same SERP (search engine results page) as your site can be more valuable for ranking for certain keywords than less relevant sites. When websites relevant to yours link to your site, it will help Google understand the content of your site, improving your ranking for your target topics and keywords. Additionally, when competitors link to your site, it demonstrates to Google the authority of your site. When your backlinks come from sites related to your industry, your ranking will be more positively impacted than links from random sites.

Link Location

The location of the link to your site on the website’s page contributes to the overall impact of the backlink. Links within a page’s content carry more weight than links in a website’s footer or sidebar. Additionally, links that appear higher in the content, especially above the fold, will have more impact than links that are lower on the page. Although backlinks generally improve your website’s Google rank, an optimal location of the backlink within the site can improve your rank even more. 

Quality of Linking Content

In addition to the quality of the overall domain of the linking site, the quality of the actual content in which your link appears has an impact on your site’s rank. Pages featuring content with more than 500 words are considered higher quality than shorter content. Content with less than 300 words is considered low quality by Google and will not help improve your search ranking nearly as much. Additionally, well-written content will have more of an impact than poorly written content. When the content on the page where the backlink is found is high quality, it will have more of a positive impact on your site’s Google rank than low-quality content.


ImageWorks, LLC | CT Search Engine Optimization

While professional SEO services can offer many opportunities to your business, you should never depend on SEO alone for the growth of your business. The companies that thrive on the online world have a comprehensive approach and utilize both online and offline marketing strategies. SEO can be a big piece; however, it is only one slice of the marketing pie.

By integrating all of today's Web tools such as SEO, social media, pay per click, and blogs, ImageWorks, LLC can turn your site into a lead generation tool.

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Topics: SEO Factors, Backlinks and SEO, Outbound Links

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