creating amazing digital stuff

March 2009 – Using backlinks to improve search engine optimisation (SEO)


Recently, many of our clients have been asking about the importance of backlinks in the search engine optimisation of websites – so we thought we’d do a quick explanation. Historically, content has been the most important factor in search engine rankings – but this has become more complicated recently.

Whilst quality content is highly important, many businesses are not aware of the importance that links from other websites to their own websites have in successful performance in search engines. One of the ways that Google measures the quality of your content is to measure who links to your website. If websites like www.bbc.co.uk or www.ibm.com (websites with very high PR rankings) are linking to you – then Google is reassured about the quality of your website and gives you a boost in the rankings, pushing you ahead of your competition.

For this reason, when creating content, do not simply think about what you want to say about your business, but think about how useful the content of your website will be to the general web community (or more specifically, potential customers). Whilst this would appear to be general good practice (explain whats important to potential clients according to their needs rather than explaining your business in terms of what you want to be) many business fail to put themselves into the position of the potential client. From a search engine performance perspective, other wiebsites will only be willing to link to you if you have genuine, relevent and hopefully, unique content. With hundreds of billions of webpages available, it is the law of nautral selection, where only the strongest pages in terms of content will survive and thrive in search engines.