How Backlinks Relate to SEO

What is a backlink?

Backlinks are URLs that are clickable in text (or images) that can take you from one website to another. For example, a food blogger has written about your restaurant and included clickable backlinks to your website. Or, you include backlinks to your own business via contributions to social media or blogging sites. The reason backlinks are important is how they relate to your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) efforts.

How Backlinks Relate to SEO

We all know that search engines compete for our searches and assume our loyalty by providing the most relevant results. Because Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) are created by algorithms, many variables need to be taken into account to determine a site’s credibility. One such variable are backlinks, which have long been crucial in determining how authoritative a page is. Pages indexed and deemed the most relevant and credible, will ultimately earn the highest rank.

Quantity or Quality?

Over time, SEO strategies using backlinks have evolved. Search engines such as Google and Bing! have recognized marketers’ efforts to win the top spot on SERPs and have continuously made adjustments to how backlinks are measured. At one point, the quantity of backlinks was the more valuable measure. Now, search engines have placed a higher emphasis on quality.

How is the quality measured?

First, you have to ask if the website that is linking to yours, a trustworthy site. Is that site receiving the appropriate traffic and delivering the content desired by its consumers? Pages of high authority, especially in your industry, will have a higher value and provide you a greater return on backlinks found there. In a grittier analysis, search engines will analyze the surrounding text, the anchor text and the page itself in which the backlink is found. Relevancy on all accords is key for these evaluations.


Backlinks are a tremendous tool that can be used to drive traffic to your desired website and improve your SEO. If you’re unsure about your approach to utilizing backlinks, consider consulting a professional website management company or marketing agency.