SEO: Importance of Inbound Links
Any business that wants to succeed in the world of internet marketing needs to have inbound links. They need to be credible sites that are directly related to the products or services you offer on your website.
You may personally love gardening and have found several gardening websites that you follow. But, you would not ask them to link back to your business website which is focused and designed around selling vacuum cleaners. In this instance, the inbound link will carry very little relevancy and ranking power. Instead, you should look to get links from websites more relevant to vacuum cleaners such as Mom/Dad blogs, cleaning websites, etc.
What Is An Inbound Link?
An inbound link is when a website is linked to another website. The purpose of the inbound link is to send search engines as well as customers to your website. Inbound links can also be called a backlink, linkback, incoming link, inlink, or inward link. No matter which descriptive word you use, these links help drive traffic to your website and can really improve your public relations and SEO position.
There are different types of inbound links that you can use for your website that have varying value and/or weight. Here are some of the more common ones:
- Contextual: An incoming link that is valuable because it comes across as a natural comment that mentions you in the body of text and describes your product or service. This can come from the written text in a blog or a news article. It actually could be any kind of text.
- Sidebar: A link that is shown on the sidebar of a page. Sometimes it is on every page of the website. Sidebars are readily found on blogs. These sidebars may contain descriptive text or graphics.
- Footer: This link is found at the very bottom of each page. These are most often used to promote the companies responsible for the website. These links do not rate as high by search engines as contextual or sidebar links.
- Reciprocal: As the word implies these are links that are exchanged between websites. These links are of little or no value if they are not relational. Sometimes a reciprocal link has value if they come from reliable sources and are relative to your product or service.
Why Does A Website Need Inbound Links?
Inbound links assist in improving a website’s Search Engine Optimization (SEO), which is what every website owner wants to have in order to climb to the top of the list of search engines such as Google, Yahoo, etc. Search engines use the inbound links as a measure of a website’s purpose and clout. These links help customers find what you offer by clicking on a linked website or blog. You will also find that the more websites you are linked with, the higher your website will rate with the search engines.
Just like in most areas of life, the quality of the link is important. Go for a reputable, recognizable link that is directly related to your website. The old saying “More is better” is true (mostly) in the case of inbound links. Of course, as stated above, the links need to be relevant.
How Do I Measure The Qualities Of An Inbound Link?
- It must come from a trustworthy website that is directly related to your website.
- It must include anchor text. This is highlighted text in a hypertext link. When clicked on, this opens the targeted web page. If it requires more work than this, people are not as likely to go to the trouble to check it out.
- The anchor text must be descriptive. This is vital to the person receiving the link because search engines will have more specific information about the site.
So, look at your website and other websites related to your own website. Decide which websites would be a good match for your website. Then contact the owners of the desired sites and try to make the links. Also, make sure you’ve linked all of your social media pages to your website. Sit down and list the companies that you regularly work with and make contact. There is a good chance that they will be willing to help you.