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Are Backlinks Still An Important Factor In Google’s Search Algorithm?
Posted by Cameron Francis on October 04, 2013 in Link Building

Do you believe that Google is de-emphasising backlinks in their search algorithm?   This is a commonly occurring question nowadays and we will attempt to answer it the best we can. While many types of lower quality links are being devalued and worth less and less, these are frequently links that should not have counted from the start.

Backlinks

At time goes on, Google has become more intelligent in the way it handles links. Google has devalued links coming from paid link sources, article databases, link networks, junk directories, and link wheels. However, this also has a large impact on the high trust links that remain and that Google does count.

These high value, high trust links are even more important. Therefore, backlinks are still very important, but you must the have quality links and the skill to recognize what those quality links are for a particular website.

The SEO Experts will understand how to find and qualify the best sources of links for their customers. They will also understand what they should avoid, to keep client sites from having problems with Google.

Backlinks in SEO

In addition to backlinks, here are some of the highlights of important ranking factors for 2013:

  • Keyword Domains And Links Have Less Relevance

In a Searchmetrics study, these factors have changed significantly in comparison to last year.  Keywords in the domain name and the URL have lost relevance. This also has an effect upon backlinks when they involve plain text anchor texts.  Therefore, it appears as if the days of “hard optimisation” of keywords are finished. A far greater emphasis is now placed on link profiles that are natural. Hard keyword backlinks have lost influence, and they can even have a negative effect, if they are used excessively.

  • Social Signals Remain An Important Ranking Factor

Importance of social media has increased over the past couple of years and this year’s research confirms this fact.  URLs that rank high in the SERPs usually have a large number of shares, likes, plus ones, and tweets. Those URLs with a large quantity of social signals tend to rank well. Content that is frequently shared is highly correlated with good search rankings.

  • Brands Go By Different Rules

Brands hold a somewhat privileged position. Search engines don’t seem to have the same criteria for brands as for other sites. For instance, Google allows brands to have many more backlinks with the brand name in the anchor text, or “brand links”, without having a negative impact upon rankings.

  • Good Content Remains Extremely Important

Content factors have a very high correlation with good search engine rankings and are even more important this year than last year. URLs that rank well tend to be longer and have more integration of media than last year. An excellent internal structure of links is also a valuable quality attribute.

  • Quality And Quantity Of Backlinks Is Still Immensely Important

Backlinks remain a vital SEO metric. In regard to this, not much has changed over time. Sites with many backlinks just rank better. However, as we mentioned at the outset of this post, the factors surrounding this metric have evolved. Today, you must have both quantity and quality in your backlink profile. Your backlink profile is a conglomerate of numerous quality factors.

  • On-Page Factors Remain A Basic Building Block

Favorable rankings in search engines have long been affected by the technical aspects of building a website, and this trend will continue. In order to have any chance of achieving favorable search engine rankings, a site must be well constructed. Consequently, on-page factors are really a prerequisite for favorable search engine rankings.

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Cameron Francis

Co-Founder

Cameron Francis is the CoFounder & Managing Director of ETRAFFIC, Melbourne's #1 Creative & Digital Marketing Agency. For over a decade Cameron has been providing growth marketing and digital strategies for over 2,000 small businesses, start-ups & entrepreneurs around the country.
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Cameron Francis is the co-founder of The eTraffic Group which started as a 2 man start-up from his lounge room, to a 50 person+, multi million dollar company.

For over 10 years Cameron has been providing growth hacking and digital marketing strategies for small businesses, start ups & entrepreneurs. He helps companies like Retreat Caravans, Melbourne Real Estate, and Roth Newton grow their revenue.

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