I checked my backlink stats for Entrepreneur’s Journey and I went from 42 up to 170, which is good but expected given I’ve been working a lot on backlink development in the last few months plus some help from my fellow bloggers linking as well (thanks guys).
If you want to do a backlink check in Google on your site all you need to do is type in
link:www.yourdomain.com into Google. Just replace the
yourdomain.com part with the URL for your site or webpage. I also recommend you check out the backlink numbers for popular and competing websites so you can get an indication of how far you have to go. Don’t get too discouraged if your numbers are a lot lower than other sites, just remember to keep working on your sites every day and over time backlinks will build up.
Backlinks are important because each time someone links to your site it counts as a “vote” for it, moving it higher up in the search engine results pages (SERPS). As part of a search engine optimization strategy you should aim to build backlinks up over time. The more backlinks you accumulate the better placed in search engines like Google, Yahoo! Search and MSN Search your site will be.
Each search engine has backlink look-up tools that you can test by typing in
link:www.yourdomain.com into the search form. Just replace the
yourdomain.com part with the URL for your site or webpage. You need to use
linkdomain:www.yourdomain.com for the Yahoo! search engine and you can use either tag for the MSN Search Engine.
My understanding is that the
linkdomain tag will provide all the sites linking to your entire domain name including subpages/directories, while the
link tag will only show backlinks for the one webpage. Generally you should find a higher total for the
No one really knows the answer to this except perhaps Google employees. I’ve asked a lot of web marketing experts and everyone has theories but so far we have no concrete answers. Most people report that Google backlinks are often a list of the least relevant (low PageRank) backlinks or a miss-mash collection of random backlinks. I initially thought perhaps only what Google deemed as authority site backlinks would be listed but so far this has been disproved because plenty of obviously non-authority sites show up in backlinks.
Another quandary you will probably come across is sites with a good PageRank, like a 5 or 6, having very low backlink counts in Google. It boggles the mind trying to figure out what Google is doing so generally I advise people not to make any assumptions based on the Google backlink counts. Watch them to see if they go up each update and leave it at that.
If you want a good list of the sites linking back to you use Yahoo! or MSN search instead. I’ve been monitoring my backlinks in Yahoo! on a near daily basis and my count goes up 20-40 per day. Whether this is because Yahoo! is indexing more sites or I’m getting more links (probably both) I don’t know, but it’s still fun to watch.
As a comparison, Google currently gives this blog 170 backlinks. Yahoo! reports more than 1600. Part of this is because of my blog commenting activities. Many blogs use the rel=”nofollow” tag so the comments I have left on other blogs with a backlink to Entrepreneur’s Journey will not be followed by Google and won’t count as a backlink. I’m not sure but I don’t think Yahoo! and MSN are taking notice of the rel=”nofollow” tag as yet so blog commenting is showing up in their backlink indexes.
In so many, many ways. You might like to try my upcoming “How to build traffic for free” course for a good lesson on backlink development (stay tuned to this channel), but in a nutshell you can do the following sorts of things:
If you do all of the above you will slowly build up a huge network of backlinks. Remember your reputation counts, so don’t don’t simply post links to your site all over the web like a spammer. Take part in the conversation and build a good reputation at the same time as you build backlinks.
First let me say that I have never spoken to anyone that was penalised by any search engine for building backlinks to their sites. Now if you are building say 1000 link farm websites that all point to your site that is an obvious recipe to get banned. Also you should remember that relevancy is just as important in a backlink strategy – you don’t want to chase links from sites with content on politics if you are selling cheese. There just isn’t any relevance (hmm…or maybe there is?).
I have read claims that if you suddenly get a huge bunch of backlinks in a short period of time you might get into trouble. Since I know of no free way to get a lot of links quickly besides using what is called “blackhat” search engine practices (software that builds fake pages to trick search engines for example is considered a blackhat SEO practice – and this will likely get your site banned…eventually), I doubt you will ever figure out a way to get into trouble. I believe it’s certainly possible, but not likely.
If you stick to natural linking process and over time expand your website patiently and methodically you will have success. If there is one thing that has been proven online over and over is that if you spend a few years building a quality site you will get results. Most of the most successful sites I know of now are managed by guys that started writing content and building backlinks back in 2003 at least, some earlier in that. If you want to be another one of these success stories in 2007 stick to your long term goals and work hard over time.