Part 1: Backlinks and Anchor Text
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has become an increasingly large part of online marketing over the past several years. If handled properly, it can result in considerable growth of your online presence, which will improve your chances of generating additional revenue. This is not a one-time thing though, but an on-going process that needs to be initiated time and again. Success with SEO doesn’t happen overnight. If you are looking for a top organic ranking on Google, make a point of continuously investing in your website.
If you are using the same SEO tactics and strategies as you did in 2015, or the year before, it’s time to re-evaluate your strategy. We’ve some seen fairly significant shifts over the past year when it comes to search engine ranking factors. This article will provide everything you need to know about fundamental SEO in 2016. In the first part we will cover:
• Link building: How do inbound links and anchor text affect SEO?
Although backlinks have always been a significant factor in determining search engine rankings, link building practice has changed dramatically over the years. In the early days of SEO, it was all about link quantity — the more links you had pointing to your site, the better. Today, it’s not just about quantity, but also about quality. Links from authoritative sites and sites relevant to your own industry are more heavily weighted, and links from spammy websites are discounted (at best) or grounds for a penalty (at worst).
The ugly truth about link acquisition is that it gets very expensive and very time consuming. That’s why you need to get the most out of every single link you get. One relevant link is more powerful than 10 irrelevant backlinks.
a. Get backlinks from authoritative sites and sites that have high standards. There are tools (i.e. SEM Rush, Ahrefs, Majestic), which assist you in recognizing the links used by your competition. You can analyze these links and accordingly develop and implement a strategy.
b. Get backlinks from active sites that have real traffic. These are the hardest backlinks to get, but are also the most rewarding.
c. Get “foundational” backlinks. At the very minimum, your business should have:
- Google + (Personal & Business)
- LinkedIn (Personal & Business)
You don’t have to actively market on all of these platforms. It certainly wouldn’t hurt. Choose what platforms work best for your business, and then dedicate your time and resources appropriately.
First, what is anchor text?
It is simply the visible and clickable text in a link.
To add anchor text to a link simply add the link text after the href attribute in the html. For example:
<a href=”https://www.yourwebsite.com”>Anchor Text</a>
Anchor text was very powerful and effective before the first Penguin update; meaning that links with keyword-rich anchor text could help a site rank better for those keywords.
Although anchor text rich links are still very important, they’re also a huge signal for spam. Google’s quality evaluations are so sophisticated that they can detect unnatural use of anchor text for manipulative purposes, and it’s now among the most recognizable indicators of a spammy link. So let your anchor text occur naturally to avoid triggering a penalty. In the post-Penguin and 2016 SEO strategy, the exact match anchors should be minimized in favor of using variations of your targeted keywords. Focus on building your links organically using a diverse range of anchor texts. Be completely random and avoid patterns. Using naked link anchors (i.e. www.yourwebsite.com) and branded anchors (i.e. Your Company Name) can help in this case, too. They are both safe and effective.
We hope this helped you learn a thing or two, and make sure you contact us directly if you have any questions whatsoever.