As a website owner, you surely know how to obtain quality backlinks to maximize your SEO efforts. An effective backlink strategy helps improve the authority and ranking of your website, resulting in higher organic traffic. Unfortunately, not all backlinks have the same value and influence.
But don’t worry! This article will explain 12 ways to get quality backlinks that you can follow if you want to find quality backlinks. Let’s get started with the discussion below!
What Is a Backlink? What Is Its Function?
A backlink is a link found on another website that directs to your website or one of its pages. Also known as an inbound link, a backlink can be inserted in text, images, or as a call-to-action button.
Backlinks play an important role in your website’s SEO, especially for:
- Credibility. Google treats backlinks as support for trust or recommendations for specific pages. If many websites place backlinks to your website, it means your website has relevant and credible content.
- Ranking. Backlinks are one of the determining factors for Google ranking. The more external links your website obtains, the higher its ranking will be in search engines.
- Accessibility. Search engines use links to find, crawl, and index your web pages more quickly.
- Referral traffic. Backlinks provide information, recommendations, or more detailed material on specific topics. If there are popular domains that refer to your content, some of their readers will also visit your site.
Characteristics of Quality Backlinks
Before we get into the topic of how to get backlinks, you need to know the characteristics of quality backlinks:
- Influential. Backlinks must come from websites that have a “high-authority” domain (with strong influence), such as well-known and leading brands in their industry. Inbound links from spam-filled and low-quality websites can harm your website’s reputation and SEO performance.
- Relevant. Google prioritizes backlinks from websites in the same niche. For example, for a website related to web development, backlinks from technology websites will be more valuable than backlinks from travel blogs. Relevant anchor text also helps readers understand the context of the link.
- Dofollow. Dofollow backlinks are crucial for link-building efforts because they transfer link equity between web pages. On the other hand, nofollow backlinks do not transfer the source domain’s influence, so they have less SEO benefits for the target website.
- From multiple sources. Google values source variety over the number of links. So, 10 links from 10 different websites will be much better than 100 links from one source.
Now that you know the factors that influence the quality of backlinks, let’s get to the main topic.
How to Get High-Quality Backlinks
1. Create Unique and Quality Content
One of the most effective techniques in link-building is to create assets or content that others will want to reference. Quality content like this usually attracts many organic links and is often shared by readers.
There are several types of quality assets that can be considered:
- Online tools. Besides providing benefits to readers, providing free tools can be an effective way to get backlinks. For example, a fitness website owner could create a nutrition calculator to help visitors analyze their meals.
- Useful guides. Comprehensive tutorial content has the potential to generate many backlinks to your website because any website can use it as a reference source to complement their content.
- Research or studies. Whether through direct research or statistics from various sources, fact-based articles can help you in getting backlinks. Articles like this provide relevant data that bloggers and other publishers can use to support their claims and arguments.
One example is the blogging statistics article below, which has gained more than 12,000 backlinks and has been shared 1,500 times on social media.
2. Write Comprehensive and Clear Guides
Good guide content should have enough article length to explain a specific topic in detail, include all related keywords, be concise, and not beat around the bush.
When writing guide articles, try to cover topics that are timeless. Such topics will remain relevant for a long time, allowing you to promote the content without having to regularly perform major updates.
After that, search for target keywords on Google and analyze the articles that appear for those keywords. Identify their structure, keywords used, and optimization strategies. Use this information to write SEO-friendly articles.
You also need to promote the content after creating it. Look for other websites in the same niche, then try to contact them. Explain how your guide article can help their readers, then try to offer to put a link that points to your website.
After that, analyze which websites are linking to other articles and try to offer your guide article as a better alternative.
3. Use Infographics to Get Backlinks
Infographics are visual representations of data. This content should also be considered to get high-quality backlinks.
Yes, unique infographics can make your article more interesting compared to your competitor’s articles or other blogs, given that millions of posts are published every day.
Another important reason to use infographics in your content strategy is that they are:
- Easy to understand. Infographics can present information quickly, saving readers time and increasing their understanding by up to 50%.
- Likely to be shared more. Infographics are shared three times more often than other types of content.
- Easy to create. It’s not difficult to create infographics, and you don’t need a lot of money. Various online tools like Canva and Visme provide free infographic maker features.
Look at the example of this How Car Engines Work infographic that can transform complex automotive information into content that is easy to understand for laypeople. The content currently has more than 3,000 backlinks from 527 referring domains.
4. Write Testimonials or Reviews
Testimonials also play an important role in building a brand’s reputation. This is because 95% of customers tend to read online reviews before making a purchase.
Write reviews based on your experience using a tool or product. The owner company may share your content directly on their platform as social proof.
You can also ask the tool or product owner to share your post with their audience after reviewing it.
For example, this review article from NerdWallet explains the pricing structure and main features of the financial company TaxSlayer. According to data from Ahrefs, the review has garnered 6,000+ backlinks, including from TaxSlayer itself.
5. Build Links Through Listicle Content
Listicle content is content that lists a number of products or brands as reviews or recommendations.
One way to get quality backlinks through listicle content is to search for content that doesn’t include your website.
Use Google search operators to narrow down search results based on specific targets by adding a minus (-) symbol to exclude your brand from the results.
For example, if you type “website design inspiration -Behance,” Google will display all results that do not include Behance in the list.
Then, contact the content creator and ask them to include your website in their list. Provide a promising and rational reason why your brand is worthy of inclusion.
If your brand or website already has a large audience, find websites that mention your brand in their content but have not yet linked to your website. Use SEO tools like Ahrefs:
- Open Content Explorer.
- Search for your brand name and exclude your address. For example: “brand” -site:yourwebsite.com.
- Click Highlight unlinked and enter your domain name.
This tool will display all pages that mention your brand but do not link to your website. Filter the search results to find more relevant opportunities, contact the author, and ask them to include a link to your website.
6. Perform Link Gap Analysis
In addition to creating content, analyzing competitor profiles can also be an effective way to get quality backlinks. You can identify the best-performing content, keywords, and traffic sources.
Here’s how to perform link gap analysis to identify competitor backlink sources:
- In Ahrefs, access Site Explorer.
- Enter the competitor’s domain name.
- In the Backlink Profile section, click Backlinks.
- Select Dofollow and New.
- Select the Live links only option.
Ahrefs will provide a backlink report for the competitor’s domain, including keywords and monthly traffic for each page.
Use this data to identify high-authority websites in your niche. Contact them and provide a sensible reason why your content is more relevant and of higher quality than your competitor’s.
Next, look for guest post websites that your competitors use to get backlinks and try to publish your own article on those websites.
7. Start Guest Blogging
Guest blogging is one way to get quality backlinks by writing articles for other websites.
You can find websites that offer guest posting opportunities with a simple Google search using the term “target keyword + write for us.”
Then, open each Write For Us page displayed in the results and read their guest posting rules. Find their contact information and send an email introducing yourself.
Include your article idea and explain the benefits they will receive if they publish a guest post from you. Repeat this process with other prospects to establish yourself as an expert and get quality backlinks.
8. Find Broken Links to Build Backlinks
You can also get backlinks by finding broken links. Broken links are often caused by deleted pages, changed URLs, and expired domain names. You can find broken links that lead to a competitor’s website by following these steps:
- Open Site Explorer in Ahrefs.
- Enter the website address.
- In the Backlink Profile section, click Broken. This tool will show you the competitor’s broken website pages.
Armed with this information, contact the domain that has the link to your competitor to report the broken link, then suggest that they replace it with your content link which is equally relevant.
9. Join Business Organizations
You can learn from experts and gain important insights to grow your business. This strategy can also be a way to get free backlinks because websites like this usually include links to their member’s websites.
If you have a local business, start by looking for and joining organizations or communities in your area. Then, ask the web administrator to include your website on their directory page.
10. Actively Participate in Forums
You can also join discussion forums to get quality backlinks. This strategy not only helps build your reputation as an expert but also increases targeted traffic to your website.
Now, you can start by finding relevant forums in a niche that offers dofollow backlinks. Or, check competitor websites to find out which forums have links to their website:
- Open Ahrefs Site Explorer and enter a competitor’s website.
- In the Backlinks Profile section, click Backlinks.
- Select Dofollow.
- Enter “forum” in the search.
- Select the Domain name filter, then click Show Results.
After this tool displays the results, create an account on the forum website and start being active there. Include a link to your website in your signature, and if possible, place a contextual link to your page related to the topic being discussed.
In addition, you can be active on popular Q&A platforms like Quora. Although using a nofollow link, this discussion website helps show your knowledge and expertise to a wider audience.
11. Make Your Website a Reference for Journalists
For this strategy, you need to create content that will be considered an important source for top media websites.
To do this, promote your content to journalists and news websites through Help a Reporter Out (HARO), a platform that connects you with media websites that need sources.
Register as a source and choose one of the three available packages. We recommend starting with the free package so that you can understand how the platform works before deciding to upgrade.
After registering, you will receive an email from HARO containing requests from various news channels. This email usually contains the reporter’s name, industry, company, query, and specific requirements.
Respond to relevant requests with the best methods and actionable tips according to the requirements. If your answer is chosen, the news website will place your website link on their page.
12. Use Google Search Console
Once you have obtained backlinks, it is important to monitor their condition and performance. Use Google Search Console to analyze your backlink profile, identify 404 errors, and find new backlink-building opportunities:
- Coverage Report. Check the Coverage Report regularly to see if any websites have linked to pages that have been deleted or broken on your website. Then, redirect those external links to the correct URL.
- Top Linking Sites. This report shows which websites have linked to your pages the most. Since they have already mentioned your website on their page, contact those websites and ask them to provide additional backlinks.
- Top Linked Pages. This section shows which pages on your website have the most backlinks. Use this information to identify the type of content that is most suitable for your link-building strategy.
Backlinks are a crucial part of your SEO strategy. The more backlinks you obtain, the higher your website will rank on search engine results pages.
However, the number of backlinks is not the only ranking factor; quality must also be ensured. External links from trusted sources will increase credibility, and links that are full of spam will actually harm your SEO and website reputation.
Therefore, follow the following steps to obtain high-quality backlinks:
- Create linkable assets, such as statistics, reports, case studies, infographics, and comprehensive guides.
- Research other websites to apply link gap analysis and leverage broken links.
- Ask other writers to include your website in their business directory or listicle content.
- Write guest posts and testimonials.
- Join forums and journalist websites, such as HARO.
Hopefully, this article has helped you understand the importance of backlinks and how to obtain effective backlinks. If you have any further questions, our Q&A section below will answer them.