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What is Backlinking and how your SMB customers can get them

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Today, lots of people make recommendations on products they’ve purchased and services they’ve tried. If you know somebody has used a product and given it a positive review, you are much more likely to trust and use that product. Essentially, this is the idea behind backlinking; it’s a vote of confidence from an unbiased source. Backlinking is a great way for your customers to improve their reputation online and can help them establish online authority. 

What is backlinking?

In simple terms, backlinking is when one website links to another – this can be via a blog or a review. For example, say you own an ecommerce business selling lawnmowers: if another website writes a list of the best lawnmowers and lists one of your products, then they add a link directing the site user onto your page: for you, this is a backlink.

Why is it good for SEO?

A good way small businesses can improve their SEO is by getting backlinks to their site. If a high ranking website has linked to their website on its page, then Google’s algorithms will see that their page is of high value and boost their search engine rankings.  

What are the different types of backlinking?

There are two different types of backlinks; Nofollow and Dofollow. As a website visitor, these tags are indistinguishable. If you see them on a website you can click and follow them regardless of their tag. However, there is a big difference for SEO. 

The best backlink is a Dofollow link. This means the search engines can see that an authoritative source has externally linked to a website, which will boost their search engine rankings.

However, if an external website puts a link to a website with a Nofollow tag, it tells search engines to ignore that link. That means this backlink will have no effect on SEO. It’s not the end of the world though; if a site with millions of views mentions your customer’s website (even with a Nofollow link) it will still enable users to click the link and visit the site. Bringing more traffic and more brand recognition.

Google’s algorithms have now been updated, and having too many backlinks from disreputable or low-value sources can actually harm a website’s ranking. It is better to have fewer backlinks from high ranking sources than hundreds of backlinks from websites with no reputation at all. 

Nowadays, small businesses should avoid spamming comment sections on high-value content with links to their website – nobody likes spam, especially Google. Not only might it harm your customer’s website reputation, but Google could also pick up on their spam habits, and penalise them by lowering where you rank on its search engine. So, small businesses need to go careful and not over-do it.

What if a low-value source has backlinked to a website?

If a low-value source has backlinked your customer’s websites, they will want to remove this link – remember, disreputable websites can negatively affect an SEO ranking. Google Webmaster Guidelines require site owners to ask website owners of toxic websites to remove their links to your site: fail to do this, and Google can penalise your site, reversing all the hard work your customers have done to build a website that is fully optimised for SEO.

Luckily, there are free tools available online to track what sites are linking to a website: Google Search Console, Ahrefs and SEMrush all allow a website owner to check every backlink so that you can remove any links from discredited websites. 

To do this, your customers will need to contact the website owner and ask them to remove the link. If this doesn’t work then they can also disavow the link with this Google tool.

One of the best ways your small business customers can get backlinks to their site is by reaching out to popular bloggers or influencers in their industry, offering to write for them or maybe simply telling them about certain content on their website that they may want to link to. 

Or, perhaps they can try to get an interview with influencers or bloggers who have knowledge in the same field as them. Interviews can be via video, podcast, or even as a blog post. By including keywords in their blog post they can continue to improve their SEO ranking. Getting their guest influencer to link to their interview on a site, they will have gained a reputable backlink to their site.

An even simpler way to get backlinks to their site is by searching a post that is already ranking well and then improving and expanding on it. By creating a blog post with high-value content, they are not only showing Google that their content should be ranked highly, but they are also encouraging other websites to add links to their site – without even having to contact them! Structuring blog posts as lists tends to be popular, or including ‘how-to’ or ‘why’ phrases can improve the chances of your customers getting more backlinks from reputable sources. 

Offering your customers a valuable online presence

Now you can pass on the knowledge of how your customers can write high-quality blogs to help grow their business, you should consider offering them a website builder that makes this process as smooth as possible. BaseKit’s white label website builder and e-commerce platform has been created with busy small businesses in mind, making us one of the best website builders for any SMB who wants to build a professional and beautiful web presence. With our fully-integrated blog feature, small business owners can post endless amounts of blogs, improving their chances of getting more backlinks to their site.

Today, a credible web presence is critical to small business survival. Talk to our partnership team (partners@basekit.com) to discuss how we can help you increase customer loyalty through valuable web presence products designed specifically for today’s SMB.

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