How Do Backlinks Work?
Backlinks play an important role in search engine algorithm, SEO, and your overall strategy for growing your website.
The easiest way to think of backlinks would be conversations among websites.
For example, John is a blogger, and he writes a very interesting article about a sports event.
Another blogger, Samantha, links to John’s article when sharing her perspective. Since she writes about the topic on her well-known online magazine site, this creates a backlink to John’s post.
Because the online magazine is popular, many other sites will link back to her article. This increases the online magazine’s authority, and John’s article also gets a valuable backlink from a reputable site.
Basically it’s a win-win.
Types of Backlinks
There are two basic types of backlinks, and one is more valuable than the other. Let’s take a quick look at each one and how they affect your site.
A Nofollow tag tells search engines to ignore a link. They don’t pass any value from one site to another. So, typically they aren’t helpful in improving your search rank or visibility.
Dofollow links are the type of backlink that everyone wants. Just keep in mind that those coming from respected sites hold the most value. This kind of backlink can help improve your search engine rankings.
However, there are do-follow links that are considered being bad or ‘toxic’. These links come from suspicious sites or are gained by breaking the search engine terms of service.
This may cause Google to penalize or even de-index your site. Remember, it’s not about the number of backlinks, but rather the quality that makes the difference in ranking.