Why Search Engines Are Ignoring Your Back Links!

By: Daniel Imbellino
Updated: May 29, 2013

When it comes to ranking well in organic search, high quality back links are still a major player! image of a broken link Why? Because as I mentioned in a previous article, they can serve as an avenue to gain credibility for your sites and their content, which is exactly what search engines are looking for. When it comes to back links, you need them, hands down, no exceptions! You won’t make it without them. After carefully following my social and technical metrics over the last 6 months, I was left with an unanswered question regarding my back links. I knew from evaluating the social activity among my sites that I had over 20,000 shares to Google plus alone since the beginning of January, yet only a few hundred were actually counted for by Google. The question is, why were so many links being ignored?

Getting Your Links Counted For!

So there I was sitting on a ton of back links from Google plus, yet I was only being credited for a small amount of them, and I figured out why. It turns out that Google takes several factors into consideration when counting back links, including how many domains are linking to you, whether or not those domains are trusted sources, as well as the quality and relevance of the links themselves. It appears that Google will only let you score for so many back links from a single domain depending on the factors I just stated above, and the “how many” factor is a big one!

For example, let’s say you have ten sites linking to you, all those links come from relevant content (they are links produced within an article itself!), and Google counts links from all those sites, but one of the sites linking back has over 500 back links pointing at you, would those links be counted for? The answer, no, they definitely won’t! Why? Because, you don’t have enough back link diversity yet, so Google won’t let you score for more links until you raise the bar and get links coming from more trusted domains. The tricky part here is, Google doesn’t state what the exact ratio is when scoring your back links per domain, and it’s also likely that those ratios differ depending on many factors, including the ones I stated above.

Either way it goes, If you have a lot of high quality back links coming from a single domain, you are going to need a much larger amount of domains pointing to you in order to score for them! In my case I want all the back links I can get from Google, these are among the best, especially from Google Plus! But one thing we must understand is that, if search engines like Google see a good number of trusted domains pointing to you, and those links again, are from relevant content, then you’ve effectively gained a measure of trust with them. Gaining trust and credibility from others proves to search engines that, you are who you say you are, you produce quality content, and people trust you on a wide scale! Can’t go wrong there!

What Should Your Link Building Strategy Be?

Well, you could do what the average SEO specialist does and spend your days dumping low quality back links into profiles and forums on high page rank sites, or you can do what search engines have been asking you to do all along, which is to produce content that people actually like so they will want to link back to you. By the way, all those irrelevant back links pointing to you from trusted domains are almost 100% worthless! They can have some value, but the true value in back links still remains within links drawn between relevant content.

Building links yourself is not a bad idea, but you should be mainly focused on your content first so that you can get others to do much if this work for you. One way to build back links effectively is to write articles for domains who will allow your links to be followed. Several sites like Hubpages and Ezine Articles both allow links to be followed by search engines, effectively giving you credit for your work. This is not a simple task to do either. This means you would have to produce high quality content not just on your own site, but on others as well. Hubpages is pretty straight forward when it comes to creating articles for their platform. On average it only takes about ten minutes to a half hour to get your article approved for publication on their website, even if it’s in the middle of the night! Squidoo is another site that allows links to be followed, but they tend to be a little more stringent regarding content, especially after being hammered in the past by affiliate marketers who were using their platform to drive traffic.

Whatever you do, don’t run from site to site spamming links everywhere, unless you want to get penalized by search engines, and in many cases banned from Google permanently, which happens often by the way. And let’s face it, this type of link building strategy clearly sucks, so don’t do it! The more people like your content, the more high quality back links you will find in your webmaster tools account that are actually being counted for. Getting others to do all the linking for you is obviously the best strategy I can think of, and I’ve seen firsthand just how well this works. Also, when others link to you from an actual website, those links tend to be made out of genuine interest, meaning its most likely they are coming from within an article that points to a relevant article on your domain. Links from social media can be relevant too, depending on whether or not the person who created the link included any comments in their original post, or posted your article to a relevant community on Google+ for instance.

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