There is no definite answer to how many backlinks are good for a website. However, having a healthy amount of high-quality backlinks can boost your search rankings and organic site traffic. So, what amount of backlinks is considered good for SEO?

Amount refers to quantity, which matters less than quality in the SEO game. For example, one backlink from a high-authority (80+ DA) website relevant to your niche is far better for your rankings than ten backlinks from authoritative (60+ DA) tabloids with little relevance or relevant blogs with little authority. 

So, what are authority backlinks, and what are the characteristics of quality backlinks? What are the determining factors that make a backlink good for SEO? Let’s start by understanding the importance of backlinks and the quality factors you should consider for your website.

What Is the Importance of Backlinks in SEO?

Let’s first agree SEO is really necessary for a website’s success, and backlinks are an important part of an SEO strategy.

You’ve probably heard of incoming links, backlinks, or inbound links. They are the same thing, and you can use the terms interchangeably. These terms refer to hyperlinks coming into your website from other online publications. 

Earning a backlink means a publisher somewhere thought your content, products, or ideas were worth sharing with their audience. Search engine algorithms have a special place for backlinks, which indicates other publishers trust you and acknowledge your authority in a specific niche. 

How Many Backlinks Do I Need to Rank?

The more quality backlinks you earn, the more trustworthy the search engine will think you are, ultimately boosting your rankings. 

Appearing higher on relevant SERPs (search engine results pages) leads to more free organic traffic with a high conversion potential. Therefore, gaining quality backlinks is a crucial part of any SEO strategy.

Moreover, when publishers share your webpage or blog post link, they direct their audience to your website. It ultimately increases your referral traffic. 

Retaining and possibly converting your referral traffic further tells search algorithms that your website is relevant and valuable. In turn, it contributes to better rankings and overall success for your website.

What Is an Authority Backlink?

An authority backlink is a link from another website considered an authoritative source in its industry or niche. These backlinks are precious for improving your search rankings and online visibility. 

When vetting a backlink, search algorithms weigh Page Rank, Domain Authority (DA), Domain Rating (DR), or some sort of a similar formula. A higher DA and DR indicate that a website has: 

  • A good user experience. 
  • Helpful, accurate, and engaging content.
  • A strong online presence and reputation within its niche or industry. 
  • An aged domain with a history of producing quality content and earning backlinks from other authoritative sources. 
  • A large and loyal audience that trusts its content and regularly visits it for information or resources.

For example, a new news website is less authoritative than a well-established one like Forbes, which has been around much longer, has a large following, and is well-known for producing high-quality content. 

Therefore, a backlink from Forbes to your website would carry more weight and be considered an authority backlink.

Having an authority backlink means that the referring website has met all these criteria, making it a trusted source of information for both its audience and search engines. This trust helps your site rank better, and a backlink from an authoritative website is like a vote of confidence for your own website. 

What Is a Quality Backlink, and Is It the Same As an Authority Backlink?

So, how do you know if a backlink is good or bad in SEO?

A quality backlink comes from a high authority site with content relevant to your niche. Most quality backlinks are authority backlinks, but not all authority backlinks are necessarily quality backlinks. A site may have high DA and DR, but the backlink will not be as valuable if it is irrelevant to your niche.

Let’s be practical and use the case scenarios of a roofing company and an insurance firm, which both run a blog on their website. The roofing company would benefit more from a backlink from a high-authority construction or home improvement website. 

In contrast, the insurance company would benefit more from a backlink from an authoritative financial or business website. Tabloids and random websites that do not have a specific niche or area of expertise are generally considered low quality. 

Such sites may have many backlinks and attract large amounts of traffic through clickbait and other tactics. They even acquire high DA and DR, making them seem authoritative. However, these backlinks are not valuable for your website as they do not come from a relevant or trusted source.

For example, it may pay more for a veterinarian website to collect one backlink from a dog blog with a DA of 65 than a tabloid with a DA of 90. The dog blog is relevant and authoritative in the niche, while the tabloid may have a high DA due to its wide range of topics and strategies to attract traffic. 

Google’s algorithm understands this difference and values backlinks accordingly. If an insurance company gets just one backlink from specialized finance giants like Forbes or Investopedia, it can do wonders regarding SEO and organic search traffic. 

It’s much better than getting backlinks from the eight top general news outlets. Why? While general news outlets may have high DA and DR, they do not necessarily specialize in the insurance niche. 

Setting the Foundation: How Many Backlinks Do I Have?

As a website owner, regularly monitoring and keeping track of your backlinks is important. It will give you an idea of how many backlinks you have and where they are coming from. It’s also crucial to understand the quality of these backlinks and whether they are helping or hurting your website’s SEO.

To analyze your backlink profile efficiently, use tools like:

  • Ahrefs.
  • Moz.
  • SEMrush.
  • Majestic.
  • SEO PowerSuite.
  • SE Ranking.

These tools provide a detailed analysis of your backlinks, including their quantity, quality, and relevancy. They also give insights on anchor texts, link types, and referring domains.

Identifying Toxic Backlinks

Just like high-quality backlinks can boost your website’s SEO, low-quality or toxic backlinks can have the opposite effect. Backlinks from spammy websites or irrelevant publications are likely to harm your site’s reputation and rankings. 

They can even get your website blocked on search engines in extreme situations. Some common characteristics of toxic backlinks include:

  • Links from shady, low-quality websites.
  • Links with unnatural anchor text (e.g., overly optimized keywords.)
  • Paid links.
  • Farmed or private blog networks

It’s important to regularly monitor toxic backlinks and disavow them if necessary to avoid any penalties from search engines. As a general rule, it’s better to have fewer high-quality backlinks than many low-quality ones.

Building High-Quality Backlinks

Here’s how to build high-quality backlinks for your website.

  1. Guest Blogging: It involves writing articles for other websites in your industry or related niches. It allows you to showcase your expertise and link back to your site.
  2. Broken Link Building: This technique involves finding broken links on high-authority websites and suggesting your content as a replacement.
  3. Resource Link Building: Creating valuable resources such as infographics, e-books, or case studies can attract backlinks from other websites looking for quality content to link to.
  4. Influencer Outreach: Influencers command high authority among their audiences, and they also need quality, relevant content constantly—pitch collaborations with them to gain backlinks from their high-authority websites.
  5. Social Media Promotion: Sharing your website’s content on social media platforms can attract backlinks from users who find it valuable.
  6. Directory Submissions: Submitting your website to relevant and reputable directories can help you gain backlinks from authoritative sources.
  7. Internal Linking: Don’t forget the power of internal linking, associating different pages and blogs within your site to increase user retention rates. 

Remember, building high-quality backlinks takes time, effort, and patience.

Final Thoughts on Authority and Quality Backlinks

Building high-quality backlinks is crucial for your website’s success. They drive traffic and also boost your trust among search engines. Please note that quantity doesn’t always equal quality when it comes to backlinks. 

Focus on building relationships with high-authority websites that publish content relevant to your industry. Utilize different strategies such as resource link building, influencer outreach, social media promotion, directory submissions, and internal linking to diversify your backlink portfolio.

However, always prioritize creating valuable content to which publishers link without you having to request it. Quality content naturally attracts backlinks, and this should be your ultimate goal. 

Jarod Thornton

Author Jarod Thornton

I love working on WordPress development!

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