What is backlink

For marketers, the term “link” or “hyperlink” can represent a number of things, traffic, authority, opportunity, etc.

Basically, the internal and external linking of the pages is a fundamental strategy for the organic ranking of the sites, which brings with it a considerable increase in organic hits and new opportunities to generate leads.

Whether you’re new to digital marketing or the deep world of SEO, I’ll explain everything about backlinks in this article.

If this is your first contact with website optimization, I recommend reading my SEO article for beginners.

Before we delve into backlinks, we need to talk about what link juice is and why it is so important.

Each link passes a force to the landing page, this is called link juice.

The more juice a page receives, the more it tends to rank organically.

What is Link building? Definition

Link building is a set of strategies whose objective is to get quality backlinks.

Link building increases a site’s authority, reputation and traffic through organic positioning.

A backlink is a link strategically placed in an article to direct the user to a page on your website. The purpose of a backlink is to increase your site’s traffic and authority.

Backlinks are divided into two classes, they are:

  • Internal backlink;
  • External backlink.

Example of internal backlink:

If you have an article on your site and it contains a link to another page on your site, this link is of the internal type.

An internal link helps keep the user staying on your site, which also lowers your bounce rate.

The internal backlink also helps to distribute the power of the page where it is located to the landing page.

External backlink example:

If you have an article on your site and it contains a link to another site, this link is of the external type.

An external link helps to validate the information in your article, for example, imagine that your article talks about the benefits of digital marketing and in it you link to a study by SEBRAE about companies that increased their respective revenues with marketing.

This is one of the validation methods, and anyone who thinks that the information should be validated only for the user is wrong, Google uses machine learning to know the quality of your article.

An external link also gives strength, maybe that’s why you’re reading this article.

What are the main types of backlinks?

As said before, any link on the internet is a backlink, however, in addition to classes, backlinks are also divided by types, check each one of them below.

Nofollow links

When a link has the “nofollow” relationship, the juice from the source page is not transferred to the destination, this means that this backlink does not pass strength.

But, don’t confuse things, even if you don’t push it, this link can still drive traffic to your site.

Generally, this type of link is used when there is no proven trustworthiness with the destination site.

Dofollow links

The “dofollow” backlink is the most used, in all contexts.

This is the backlink that not only gives you strength to position yourself in Google and other search engines, but also increases traffic to your site.

Noreferrer links

Using the “noreferrer” relationship does not directly impact SEO, basically this relationship allows the origin to not be counted in tools such as Google Analytics.

Root domain links

Root domain backlinks represent the number of links your site received from a single domain.

That is, if your site has 10 links coming from the same domain, the force that reaches your website is only one.

Low quality links

Low quality backlinks are low quality links, most of the time they are backlinks in directories, spam sites, adult content sites or purchased links.

In addition to not helping your site’s organic positioning, low quality backlinks can hurt your performance, causing your site to suffer drops in the SERP.

Anchor links

Most of the time, links are inserted in anchor texts, that is, in one or more words in text.

Anchor text backlinks are responsible for giving strength to certain keywords on your site, improving the positioning of these terms in search engines.

Image links

Not very common, but also used, are the “image links”, that is, links in images.

In this case, the strength of the link passes to the term within the “TITLE” attribute of the image.

Other types and attributes

In addition to the class and type, the links also have some attributes, check the main ones below.


The “noopener” relationship doesn’t directly impact SEO either. This relationship works as a security measure against some JavaScript code.

Even though in current versions of Browsers this has been fixed, for users on older computers this is still a problem.


The “external” relationship facilitates the operation of some browsers, as it already warns that the link is for another domain.

Using this relationship does not directly impact SEO.


Using the “_blank” attribute causes the link to open in a new tab.

This attribute is a great ally of SEO, as it allows the user to open the links in a new tab, that is, he does not leave your page.


Using this attribute is optional, because if no other attribute is used, the link will open in the same tab.

Are there any other link attributes?

Yes, there are several other link attributes, however, they are hardly used and do not impact SEO, so there is no need to mention all of them in this article.

Why is a backlink so important for SEO?

A backlink is not just important for an SEO strategy, it is the primary organic ranking factor.

But before thinking about how to build backlinks, you need to do some keyword research.

How does the Penguin algorithm impact backlinks?

In the past, any type of backlink helped rankings, but in 2012 Google released the Penguin algorithm.

Basically, the Penguin algorithm aims to penalize external linking on websites:

  • No contextual relation to the landing page;
  • Spam;
  • Buying backlinks.

Furthermore, any and all external links detected as “unnatural” are penalized by this algorithm.

For example, if you have a digital marketing site and you receive a backlink on a cake recipe site, that link may be suspicious because it is out of context.

Does the number of backlinks matter?

Currently, better than having too many links is having quality backlinks.

Only contextual backlinks on good authority sites are considered valid for organic ranking.

This means that there is no point in having more links than your competitor if the quality of your backlinks is inferior or out of context.

Also, low quality or out-of-context links are harmful to your site.


As said before, Penguin came to make link building fairer.

Many websites are penalized daily for using blackhat tactics, that is, strategies that circumvent algorithms to achieve better rankings in search engines.

How to get quality backlinks?

In view of everything you’ve read so far, you must be wondering how to get quality backlinks, check out my tips below.

1 — Don’t buy backlinks

Before you start link building your site, keep in mind that buying backlinks is harmful.

This practice is not only detectable but also punishable.

Natural backlinks are best for your site.

2 — Produce flawless articles

The best method to get backlinks naturally is to produce quality articles.

Produce rich, useful content and add value to the user, this way, you’ll get backlinks naturally.

Types of content that get the more backlinks:

  • Reports and Research;
  • Guides;
  • Free tools;

3 — Be an active user on other sites

As I explain in my article on how to get followers on instagram, being an active user is more than being counted as access.

Whenever you read an article related to your area of ​​expertise, leave a productive comment for the author.

My motto in content production is “get noticed to be referenced”, and this has worked very well, just profile my site’s backlinks in any SEO tool.

4 — Make guest posts

Guest posts are guest posts, that is, you produce an article for a site that deals with the same subject as yours.

Likewise, offer other people and even competitors to post on your site in exchange for a link, this way you build a relationship.

Another strategy for getting guest posts is to contact blog owners related to your niche by email.

You’ll hardly get many links a day, but this is an ant’s job.

5 — Broken links

Even referral sites sometimes suffer from broken links.

Find broken links on authority sites and report the problem. Take the opportunity to suggest a page on your site to receive that link.

6 — Steal your competitors’ links

One thing is clear, if a site links to your competitor, they can link to you.

Make a list of all the sites where your competitor has backlinks and contact all of them.

7 — Interview influencers and personalities in your niche

Many people think influencers are untouchable, but they are ordinary people.

Get in touch with several personalities in your industry and try to schedule an interview online.

Use mental triggers and email marketing to increase your article’s visibility and engagement.

8 — Mailing from journalists

Produce rich stories with credible sources about your industry and send them to journalists in your city.

Ask to include a link to your site in the keywords you want to rank for.

How do you know if a website is good for getting a backlink?

There are several points that can be observed, however, depending on your niche, you don’t have to be so picky.

The most important points to observe when creating a backlink on a website are the following:

  • High DA (Domain Authority);
  • Related content;
  • Post frequency;
  • Relevant traffic;
  • Spam Score 0%.

Where to place backlinks on a website?

Knowing that each and every link is a backlink, but after all, where to place it to get the best possible result?

Check the ranking of backlink placement.

1 — Content

Backlinks in articles are the best, as they provide much more value to the target site.

2 — Top and Menu

The backlinks at the top and in the menu don’t even come close to the backlinks in the body of the page.

3 — Comments

Most of the time, backlinks in comments are nofollowed, even so, depending on the context, it can be used in a link building strategy.

4 — Sidebar

The backlinks in sidebars are very weak and barely convey authority.

5 — Footer

The strength provided by a backlink positioned in the footer is practically nil.

What do you offer in exchange for a backlink?

Never offer a link in exchange for another, this is frowned upon by Google.

What I usually offer in exchange for a backlink:

  • Boosting that article on social media;
  • An authorial and well-optimized article;
  • Sending the article to my audience via newsletter.

How to identify if link building is working?

When a link building strategy is done right, you can see:

  • Improved organic positioning;
  • Increased organic traffic;
  • Increased site authority (DA);
  • Increase in DR (Domain Rating) and UR (URL Rating);
  • Increased backlinks from referring domains;
  • Increased referral traffic (access from your backlinks);
  • Increased lead generation.


Anyone who thinks link building is quick and easy is wrong. It can take months before you get a good backlink profile.

So, build a content marketing strategy integrated with your link building work, I’m sure that in just a few months you’ll get great results.