Link Building is a vital part of improving your site’s SEO but sometimes having no links is better than any links. This is because those spammy, low quality links that your site may have are a red flag that Google picks up on. That’s why reviewing your backlinks is an important piece of housekeeping that keep your site healthy and helps you avoid a Google Penalty.  It’s something that we do for all our clients as a preventative measure.

This Ricemedia blog will look at links and how to judge the quality of them, whether these links would help your site or hinder it. When reviewing backlinks to your site, you simply need to ask these questions.

What is the Site Authority?

Does the site linking to you have a low authority? If your site has links from low authority sites, this will lower your own site’s authority. If this is the case, you need that link removed.

This can be done through looking at their Trust Flow through Majestic or looking at the domain authority through Moz. Either of these tools can help you gage whether a site has any authority.  Both have handy Chrome plugins to help you too.

Is the Site Relevant?

Does this site linking to you have any relevance to you or your business? If not, Google can see these links as spam.

Also, this is just common sense. You want to be driving traffic to your site that will be a potential customer or client; having links on sites that are irrelevant to yours will be attracting the wrong kind of traffic. This can affect the quality of your analytics data and your site’s bounce rate, which can affect its SEO value.

To put it into context if you’re a Jewellery retailer it’s relevant for you to have a link on a fashion or lifestyle blog, but not on an automotive blog.

Is the Site Updated Regularly?

A site that is regularly updated demonstrates to Google that it is alive and well. Links from sites that are not updated regularly, these links can appear to Google as spammy links from an abandoned website.  There’s no value in these links: they won’t drive any traffic to your site or increase your SEO.

So when looking at the source of the link, check when was the last time they’ve updated the site; see when was their last blog post for a quick check.

Are These Links Known to be an Outdated SEO Technique?

Back in the early days of SEO, SEOs and webmasters developed a range of link building techniques to greatly improve the rankings of their sites. One of these would be setting up SEO directories; these are plain online directories that posted links to their sites and could drastically improve rankings.

Nowadays, however, Google has caught on to these spammy techniques and are cracking down. Don’t get caught out, if you find your site is linked to an SEO directory or other outdated SEO tactics such as article spinning directories or even porn websites, have the link removed.

Do you Want to be Associated With This Site?

A simple question that some people simply do not consider, do I want my website to be associated with this site? The link might tick off all of the boxes above but is this a site you want to be associated with?

Do some research on the site, what kind of audience would it bring? While the site might be relevant, would the audience it’ll be bringing to your site be potential clients? Is the site aligned with your brand identity?  If your company remains neutral, an association with a hard opinionated site may not be best for your brand.

As you start reviewing your backlinks (and potential backlinks!) and scrutinising where they’ve come from, you will soon get in the habit of being able to spot a link that will give value to your site and what link will not.
If you have any questions on how to review your backlinks or how else can you improve your website’s SEO, get in touch today!   

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