Inbound links are a crucial part of search engine optimization. They happen when another website links to your site. So what is an inbound link? It’s simply a hypertext link that points from one webpage to another page on the same website or, more broadly, any other resource like images, videos, PDFs and so forth.
In this article you will learn what they are and why they’re important for SEO, what makes for a quality inbound link, other types of links such as outlinks (links pointing away from your site) or nofollowed links, and how to implement a good strategy for building new inbound links.
What are inbound links?
Inbound links are hypertext links that point to your webpage from another website. You’ll see them in the form of text, usually blue and underlined when you hover over it with your mouse cursor.
They happen when someone else decides to put a link on their site pointing back to yours. In other words, they’re also called “backlinks.”
Why are inbound links important for SEO?
The number and quality of the inbound links to a webpage or domain is one of the most important factors that determines how well it ranks on search engine result pages (SERPs). This factor has been determined by Google over time. It’s considered an indicator of your site’s authority.
The more inbound links you have, the better your chances are of ranking well for a particular keyword or phrase.
This is because Google’s algorithm takes into consideration how authoritative and trustworthy it thinks certain websites to be when making decisions as to what will show up high on SERPs for that keyword or term – which means those sites with more inbound links are going to rank higher.
What makes a quality link?
A high-quality, or “white hat,” inbound link has two characteristics: it’s relevant and is placed on another website that has an established authority. A related but less authoritative site could also be considered for the right situation. If you’re a business, for example, and you’re linking to another site that also sells your products or services.
What are outbound links?
Outbound links happen when someone else on the web decides to link back up to one of your pages from their website with a hypertext link pointing in the direction of your page. They look just like inbound links, with the exception that they’re blue and underlined when you hover over them.
What are nofollowed links?
Nofollowed links are also called “nofollow” links because Google will not pass on any of its ranking power to your site based on this type of link. The link is just for informational purposes only, or for advertising purposes. It’s usually used on blogs or forums, for example.
How to get inbound links:
There are a number of ways you can build up your website’s inbound link profile and start earning more high-quality backlinks from other sites online. Here is how we do it at I Buy I Review:
- Find sites or blogs that are relevant to your site’s content and offer valuable information. Include a link on your page pointing back to the other site so they can reciprocate. This is called reciprocal linking, which I’ll talk about later in this article. It will make you look like a good partner for them as well.
- Create helpful content on your site that is well written, informative, and will be of value to the reader. This way you’ll have a reason for other sites to link back up to yours in order to share this information with their readers who might also find it useful. You can do this by including links within the article or by adding a “resource” page with links to other sites.
- When you link out, make sure it’s relevant and informational for the reader instead of just providing them an opportunity to buy something from your website or blog.
- Give your inbound links a boost by submitting them to social bookmarking websites like Digg, Delicious, or Stumbleupon. These sites will increase the chances of another reader coming across your link on these sites and then linking back up with you when they publish it again for others to see.
- Get your content published on other websites. This is one of the best ways to build up your backlink profile, but it takes a lot more work and money than reciprocal linking or writing articles for sites with similar topics. It’s not an easy task and you have to be willing to put in the time to make it happen.
- If you want a more hands on approach, submit your site or blog to directories like DMOZ or Yahoo! Directory. This will give you some great backlinks and increase your rankings with Google search results pages. However, these can take up a lot of man hours to get on all the right directories.
- Submit a press release about your website’s new content or news items that are relevant and informative for other sites who want this information for their readers. Remember when I mentioned reciprocal linking earlier? You’ll need to include a link back to your site in the press release.
- Use social media to get some backlinks from followers who will share links with their friends and communities on sites like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, or LinkedIn. This is a great way to build up those inbound links while also getting exposure for your website’s content.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is all about getting traffic through search engines, such as Google or Bing. Inbound links are a great way to get the right traffic from high-ranking sites that will be interested in your content and what you have to say.
To keep getting quality backlinks, make sure your site is maintained by updating it regularly with fresh new content. You can even add new pages as needed on your site to keep the content fresh.
Artificial links vs natural links
Artificial inbound links are any connections that a site owner knowingly pays someone to create. Natural inbound links come from other sites and pages linking back up to your own site or blog, like I mentioned earlier with reciprocal linking.
How to get high-quality natural inbound links
Follow the steps below if you want some high quality natural incoming traffic:
- Find relevant blogs within your niche and offer to write articles for them.
- Create helpful content on your site that’s well written, informative, and will be of value to the reader. Include links within the article or add a “resource” page with links back up to other sites you think are valuable.
- When linking out make sure it’s relevant and informational for the reader instead of just providing them an opportunity to buy something from your website or blog.
- Submit content on other websites that are relevant and informative for their readers with links back up to you in order to build up those inbound links while also getting more exposure.
- Make sure your site is maintained by updating it regularly with fresh new content, adding pages as needed.
- Avoid any artificial inbound links like buying links to increase your ranking or rankings for a keyword phrase with Google search results pages. That’s against the law and can get you penalized by Google’s algorithms that are designed to keep spamming at bay!
Effective link building strategies will work on both a large and small scale, so find the approach that works best for you.
Link building has both advantages and disadvantages: It can help your SEO but might also waste time if not done correctly or focused on high quality links only; link building could be expensive with costs of hiring someone to create them for you as well as paying outbound links to other websites.
The decision is up to you! What are your goals? Do you want higher rankings on Google search results pages, or do you just need a little boost in traffic while saving money instead of pouring it into this strategy? If so, then consider getting some high quality natural incoming links by implementing the process I outlined above.
Alex Becker and link building
Alex Becker is a multi-faceted online marketer and content marketer who has made millions by buying and selling SEO companies and affiliate programs that teach how to build inbound links. He's also the author of the best-selling book, "How to Rank in Google: A Step by Step Guide To SEO Success."
I buy and review courses so you don’t have to. Sometimes, I even find courses that are legitimate and worthwhile; and that’s how I accidentally came across one that led me to building a 6-figure business in a little under 5 years. Now, I still review courses because it’s my favorite hobby. 🙂 Learn more about me here.