What Is a “Good Link Profile” and How Do You Get One?

seo link building

You know that good link-backs are an important part of SEO. You know how important it is to work at building strong backlinks. You understand the impact of over-optimized anchor text. You realize the toxic effect of links from spam sites and directory listings. But how important is it, really? And, more to the point, how can you get a link profile that Google loves?

I want to explain the components of a “good link profile” and provide suggestions for how you can improve your link profile.

The importance of a link profile for SEO

In order to stress this point, I want to show you just how important your link profile is.

2013 was a big year in SEO with the rollout of Penguin 2.0, the introduction of Hummingbird, and the announcement, right after the New Year, that social signals are not factored into the search algorithm.

Where do all these changes leave us when it comes to the importance of a link profile?

It’s still really important.

Based on testing, consultation with other industry experts, and careful analysis of existing data, I’ve come up with a visual representation of how important, I think, a website’s link profile is:

link factor

(If you want more detailed information on possible ranking factors, please see the Moz’s list of ranking factors.)

We don’t know for sure, but based on careful study, testing, and experience, I think it’s safe to say that a link profile accounts for the vast majority of a site’s ranking according to Google’s algorithm.

The penalties that Google gives to sites are largely based on the sites’ link profiles. The issues that most directly impact a site’s positive ranking are integrally connected to the link profile of that site.

A link profile is incredibly important, which means we need to be asking the following questions:

What is a good link profile?

and

How do I get one?

What Is a Good Link Profile?

So, let’s answer the first question.

First, let me point out what a good link profile is not. It’s not just backlinks.

Any SEO will tell you that backlinks are the most important element of SEO. Real ranking goes nowhere unless there are backlinks.

However, you can’t simply pore over the backlinks and neglect the larger picture of what’s going on with your link profile. A link profile is more than just backlinks.

Stated another way, backlinks are just one component of the link profile. There is a deeper complexity to the backlink discussion.

So, let’s go through several other things that affect a link profile. What follows is a discussion of the features that characterize a healthy link profile. This is not an exhaustive list.

Big Idea: a good link profile has lots of high authority links and no spammy links.

In other words, there are two overarching qualities to a good link profile:

  1. Lots of high value, high DA, and high authority linkbacks.
  2. No spammy backlinks.

You already knew that. I want to go further and explain some of the less obvious features of a good link profile.

Branded anchor text

When you break down the importance level of the different elements that affect a website’s ranking, it looks like this:

  • Most important factor in a website ranking: Link profile.
  • Most important aspect of a link profile: Quality of backlinks.
  • Most important quality aspect of backlinks: Anchor text.
  • Most important quality of anchor text: Diversity.

Google wants to see in a link profile anchors that display diversity in the form of branded anchor texts.

A branded anchor text is one in which the anchor includes the brand name of the company.

For example, if your company is Better World Electronics, then a branded anchor would be “Better World Electronics,” and it would point to your URL.

Branded anchors may also be diluted or combined with keywords.

  • Diluted: “This company, known as Branded World Electronics, or BWE, is a leading provider of wearable electronic devices.”
  • Combined with keywords: “One device, Better World Electronic’s wearable heart rate monitor, is surprisingly affordable.”

A good link profile can contain a large percentage of such anchors. In some cases, this percentage might be as high as 20% of total anchor texts without any damage being done to the site’s link profile.

Semantically relevant anchor text

Another type of diverse anchor text is “semantically relevant.”

You’re probably familiar with Google’s semantically related keywords. Google may return your website in queries even if those queries do not include your target keyword as long as the content on your website is similar to the keywords that are used in the query.

When you have in your link profile anchors that use such semantically similar keywords, this helps to enrich and diversify the profile.

A semantically relevant anchor may look like this:

  • Your target keyword: “wearable heart rate monitor”
  • Semantically relevant anchor: “smart fitness tracking device”

Your website may have a blog article on the subject of “Wearable Heart Rate Monitors Used for Olympic Marathon Training.” A health website then links to this page, using the anchor “smart fitness tracking device.” This type of semantically relevant anchor text can help enhance a link profile.

Diluted anchor text

I mentioned the word “diluted” above, referring to a branded anchor combined with other words or phrases. This is an important feature of healthy link building.

In the post-Penguin era of link building, optimized anchor texts are bad. Diluted anchor texts are good.

A diluted anchor text is one in which the anchor text has lots of words, some related and some not.

For example, let’s use our fictional example of Better World Electronics, who wants to rank for keywords that have to do with fitness tracking devices, wearable electronics, wearable heart rate monitors, etc.

A nice diluted anchor text linking to its site would look like this: “Want to wear a heart rate monitor while you sleep? Some companies are making this possible.” (Underlined portion is the anchor text.)

That’s a whole sentence worth of anchor text. It doesn’t contain any keywords. And it doesn’t even contain the brand name. But that’s okay. Its dilution makes it a valuable link to have in the link profile as long as all other factors are positive.

The more diverse, random, and diluted an inbound link profile is, the better.

Relevancy of linking site

This component is also known as local/topic-specific popularity. As an algorithmic feature, it was initially developed by Teoma, which is now rebranded and integrated into Ask.com. It is now a standard part of virtually every search engine’s algorithm.

Your site’s backlinks should ideally come from sites with a similar topic. They need to be relevant.

For example, let’s say you have a site that has to do with online real estate accounting. You receive a backlink from a landscape management company. This link from the landscaping company will not do much to enhance your link profile. If, however, you received a backlink from Realty.com, this would be far more beneficial to your link profile.

Realty has to do with real estate, just like your site does. Landscaping — not so much. You want links from sites in your niche.

Relevancy of surrounding context

Relevancy goes a bit deeper though. A healthy link profile has links with a relevant content, surrounding the anchor.

Let’s go back to the online real estate accounting company and its link from Realty.com. I will contrast two examples of a link:

Example 1: The Realty.com link comes from a page that features an article titled “Best Ways to Stage a Manor House for Real Estate Photography.” The link to your real estate accounting site comes from a paragraph about placing furniture in front of wall vents. This is an irrelevant discussion to your core business and likely to the content on your site. The link, while it will probably help your site, is not the most ideal.

Example 2: The Realty.com link comes from a blog article “Top Ten Online Real Estate Accounting Software Services.” The link to your business is in a paragraph that is about your business specifically. The anchor is a branded anchor that goes to one of your blog articles. Gold. This is a perfect link.

When a sending link has a surrounding discussion that is closely related to your niche, this increases the value of that link to your profile.

Vicariously compromised linking site

Let me explain what I mean by “vicariously compromised linking site.” It sounds kind of jargony at first.

This happens when you get a link from a site that is, on its own account, not a spam site. This very site, however, links to a spam site and has spam links pointing to it. It is vicariously compromised.

In the algorithm’s eyes, the link you get from that site is in a “bad neighborhood.” This guilt by association lowers the value of the link. It also has toxic links pointing to it. The distributed value of these toxic links is then transferred to your site.

Freshness of links

As time goes on, the power of a link tends to decline. If you have a link from a DA 90 site that is seven years old, it may not be delivering the same amount of value as a DA 80 site that just linked yesterday.

Here is an example. The site beavercreekresortproperties.com has a link from The Denver Post:

denver post

The Denver Post has high domain authority of 89. But the link comes from an article that is several years old:

denver post

While not devaluing the site, this link is no longer providing the same level of value that it did when it first occurred.

This phenomenon is dubbed as Google’s Freshness Factor. We know that a page’s content can get “stale” over time and fall in rank.

Links, like content, also get stale and provide lesser value over time. Here’s how Moz illustrates the influence of value of links from fresh sites:

fresh pages

There is a legion of other factors that influence Google’s Freshness Factor. I recommend Cyrus Shephard’s excellent treatment of the subject.

The fresher the link, the more value it adds.

Co-citation and co-occurrence

Strictly speaking, co-citation is not a link. It does, however, register tangentially in the taxonomy of link profiles. Co-citation, often used interchangeably with the term co-occurrence, is the mere mention of site A by site B, even without an actual anchor/link between the two. Value is passed from one to the other as a result of the mention.

For example, let’s say your company Awesome Real Estate Accounting Software is discussed in the New York Times. There is no link, but there’s your company name — Awesome Real Estate Accounting Software. This is a good thing even if there is no link.

It goes a step further though. Sites pass additional co-citation authority when they contain contextual keywords and contextual links to high authority sites. Let’s say that you receive a link from a site, and that site, in turn, is mentioned in co-occurrence by a high-value site. This one-step-removed co-citation may actually improve the value of the link to your site.

Authority of the linking site

This is an obvious one. I’m going to add a brief discussion on nofollow though.

When your site receives a link from a high authority site, your site gets major value.

In order to be truly effectual, the link should be a followed link rather than a link with the tag “nofollow.” A nofollow link still has some value, but it’s not the value that contributes to the link profile.

When Google comes across a link to your site with the nofollow tag, here’s what it does:

In general, we don’t follow them. This means that Google does not transfer PageRank or anchor text across these links. Essentially, using nofollow causes us to drop the target links from our overall graph of the web.

You can find out if a link is “nofollow” by going to a page source code and looking at the link’s href tag.

Wikipedia, as a rule, nofollows all links. Here’s its page on Google, with the link to a page in Google.com:

nofollow

Thus, the Wikipedia link doesn’t pass any rank or value to Google. (Not that it really needed it anyway.)

The depth of the linked page

The deeper the link goes into a website’s structure, the more valuable it is in a link profile.

It’s a fact of linking: most links your site receives point to your homepage — the first level in the structure of your website.

However, an over-saturation of links to a homepage will not be as valuable as when those links are balanced by a number of other links going to deep internal pages on the website.

Your deep internal pages need to be strengthened with backlinks. When they receive such backlinks, they enhance the authority of the site as a whole.

This is one of the reasons why you need to have strong content marketing. Content lives on pages that are deep within a site’s structure, providing linkable value for those internal pages.

The diversity of the linked pages

A good link profile will display lots of linked pages. It won’t just have links to one or two pages but will display links to the Homepage, the Blog page, the About Us page, the Contact Page, and other subpages.

The broader the distribution and diversity of linked pages, the stronger the link profile.

No paid links

Paid links are spam, plain and simple.

To see a humorous display of Google’s Knowledge Graph search result on paid links, try Googling “what are paid links.”

Here’s what you might see:

paid links

It’s not really gray. It’s black, especially when those paid links are obvious.

Cutts knows:

The vast majority of the time things are incredibly clear: people are paying money outright for links based on PageRank, flowing the PageRank, trying to get high the rankings. Ninety-nine percent of the time it’s abundantly clear that these are links that are being bought and paid and sold and all that sort of stuff.

There are, admittedly, gray areas. Obviously, the algorithm doesn’t know if you buy the link-giver lunch in exchange for the link.

Generally speaking, however, when the algorithm can determine the presence of paid links in your inbound link profile, it will come wielding a penalty hammer.

Number of links to a page

The more links a page receives, the better. A healthy link profile, after all, has lots of link-backs.

But what about getting lots of links from the same site? Do more links from the same site add value?

No.

Google reads one link from a site in much the same way as it reads tons of links from that site. So, if you get a link from hbr.org, that’s awesome.

If you get twenty links from www.hbr.org, does that mean you get twenty times the awesomeness?

Not quite. What you want is lots of links, yes. But you want lots of links from different sites.

Lots of links from the same site won’t hurt your link profile. It just won’t help you.

No article directory links

Great link profiles don’t have spammy directory listings. It is fairly common knowledge in the SEO industry that article directory links are dangerous territory.

Cutts himself recently made the statement again, saying that you shouldn’t use article directories to build links. He even went so far as to discuss it in a video.

Back in the good ol’ days of SEO, it was relatively easy to spawn off a few dozen articles on an article directory site and get a nice SEO kickback. Today, not so much.

I recommend that companies whose link profile is bloated with such links go into the article directory itself and remove the links.

Conclusion

So, how do you get a good link profile? Now that you understand the features of a great inbound link profile, you should have a better idea of what strategy to employ to acquire links.

Here’s my simple advice. Do a darn good job at content marketing.

If you have a strong content marketing strategy rather than an explicit link acquisition strategy, then the links will come. They will be stronger, healthier, and more reputable than you could possibly guarantee by engaging in some not-so-sure-if-it’s-gonna-work link building strategy.

Content marketing is SEO, and it’s a very powerful and transformative way of doing it.

A systematic process of getting a good link profile deserves a series of its own. But the answer that you may be expecting isn’t as much a how-to guide to gaining those links as it is a how-to guide to creating and unleashing a killer content marketing program.

So, how else can you build a good link profile?

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Comments

  1. Thanks Neil

    You have given a very good insight on how we should build our link profile. I was really looking for a post like this thanks for the help…..

    Rizwan

    • Rizwan, glad I could help. Thanks for reading :)

    • Nice read! I just wanted to know what’s the difference between over optimized anchors and semantically relevant anchors? We know as per penguin’s latest update optimized anchors are banned. So I would like a semantically optimized one for the same.

      For instance what could possibly be semantially optimized anchors for the tags Architects in Bangalore, Architects in Delhi and so on supposing I have a url structure with the similar phrases? Isn’t it over optimized anchor then?

  2. I deeply regret that i didn’t find you at least 2 years ago Neil…

    Guess that my first 7-8 month in this industry I spent on warrior forum and buying seo stuff for $8 … horrible idea…

    95% of information that i learned(and i thonk that i am almost master seo guy) are useful for 3-4 months and then your site is dead..

    Just one question about article directories… You said NO.. But reposting my articles for example only to ezines with 1 link to my homepage.. I think that should be ok, or not?

    • Hi Jan Orsula,

      You’re at the right place now :)

      The same query I’ve about article directories.

      Article directories are Big No. Google is constantly awaking about it. Right.

      Google it after guest posting also {Recently penalized two huge blog network sites.}

      Then why, still we can find ‘Article Directories’ with PR like 6 & 7 … also having thousands of pages indexed in Google.

      The same story is with ‘Link Directories’. Why Google is not taking action against them?

      Neil Sir, Would you suggest something about it?

    • Article directories used to be a good source of quality links as long as the article directories itself were good quality ones with limited original posts. Since their quality level went down, the quality of links also went down. Now it can do more harm than good!

      • Parmveer Singh :

        Yes Deepak,

        We all know and aware about it.

        But the question is …. when Google considers these link sources as bad (Article & Web Dir.)…

        Why & How such directories gain PR upto 7 & 8.

        Why Google does not penalize them, as just done with 2 huge guest blogging network?

        My question is still unanswered.

    • You want to avoid that as well as those sites can hurt your rankings.

  3. Building a good link profile is never easy,just a bit mistake can lead us to become a spam on the eye of google.Such a big help from you,thanks for this indebt post about such a critical topic.

  4. Hi Neil,

    Since Article directory is clear no-no now, what do you think about the other opportunities of article/content based links except guest posting (like Journals, blog platforms, and here I am just talking about the unique articles, not one articles submitted to tons of platforms)?

  5. Wow, didn’t realize link profile was still THAT important relative to other SEO factors.

    Time to reallocate my time :)

  6. Thank you Neil for the brilliant article. One of my favorites on you blog and, overall, on the topic of links.
    I have been following you for almost a year now, and I like when you dig deep on a specific topic.

    Cheers

    -Elena

  7. Hi Neil, thank you for this article very useful. I have a question though:

    When you say “Lots of links from the same site won’t hurt your link profile. It just won’t help you.” I am a bit surprised. So having 750 links from wikipedia or just 1 is the exact very same for Google ?

    Are you 100% sure of that ? Do you any official source for this information ? I didn’t find any. It would be extremely useful for me to have some “proof” in order to show my clients and my boss that focusing on getting thousands of links from on single site is useless.

    However, what about links on different topics to different pages ? For example:
    – 1 link to my page talking about dogs from wikipedia page that talks about dog
    – 1 link to my page ‘cat’ from wikipedia page ‘cat’.

    Can I get 1 awesomeness for both keywords or not ?

    • Christophe, thanks for your question.
      I wanted to ask Neil about it as well.

      Besides, I still believe that links are like pipelines through which “SEO juice” flows.

      So, I can think of only one case when number of links do not matter. It is when you have many links to the same page and from the same page, using the same anchors, and when there are no other links on that page you link from.

    • I’m not getting you’re question clearly.

      Though Brian Dean covers variety specifics in link building strategies you can check him out here http://backlinko.com/

      • Hey Joel,
        I agree your point. But what Neil says, if you want to get good link profile you should follow these points.

        Neil also covered link diversity and he is suggesting not to go with spammy article directories.

    • If it is an authority site, the more links from it within the content the better. But in most cases you don’t need more than 1 link from a site. After the first one, the rest don’t help with rankings as much as the first.

  8. Excellent and treated to the core.

    The whole idea is not making things easy Neil. I think, like you mentioned, it’s about producing content that attract links themselves. That does not fail at all

    I love the point on Relevancy of surrounding context. It’s new and making a lot of sense to me ;)

    This is just an exceptional post. It makes a beautiful weekend for me

  9. Great article! This blog is fantastic; what you show us
    is very interesting.

  10. Very well detailed on building link profile.. Learning great stuffs from you Neil.. Still a lot to learn.. I can only say, thanks for sharing.

  11. If someone does link to a blog post of yours and you then in exchange link to one of their blog posts form a different article you write, would that be considered offsetting? And would doing so be considered a form of a blog link network?

  12. Awesome post Neil. I think the promotion part of content marketing is often overlooked. After all, if no one is reading your awesome content, what’s the point? Utilizing paid social media amplification platforms, such as Twitter’s promoted Tweets and Facebook and LinkedIn’s promoted posts really gets your best content in front of your target audience for an affordable price-assuming you’ve got your targeting right. Thank you for all your great contributions to the digital marketing space.

  13. Hi Neil,

    Nice post! Learnt a lot from this post.
    If Google penalizes a website where our site gets a lot of back links, How will that affect our site?

  14. Neil this post is spot on.

    Everything needs to have a ‘natural’ feel to it. I think anchor text is one of the most common things I see get jacked up.

    No one naturally says when speaking ‘If you need a good dog sitter you should reach out to Dog Sitter Seattle.”

    I tell folks if it doesn’t sound right when you read it out loud and you wouldn’t use that terminology when you are speaking to someone, then don’t do it!

    Anyway…great write-up and great stuff!

    Cheers!

  15. Thanks Neil Sir for writing this great post.After reading this post i understand that link building is not enough to get rank for our posts on Google and other search engines.

  16. Great Post Neil,

    A good link profile is most important to rank well in search engine. More quality links you drive to your website more higher you ranked well in search engine. This is Google rule.

  17. Hi Neil,
    As we all know that SEO of a blog is the major stuff to concentrate on. Bloggers are working hard for it everyday and then. I agree with your key points of building a good link profile. For bloggers it is really important to check if there is any spammy link at their blog. All the inbound links should be real. There are many bloggers who try to manipulate Google by paid links. But we all that paid links can harm a blog at a great extent.

    All the tips you have provided are worth reading but not that much easy to implement for a beginner.
    Thanks for sharing.

    -Ravi

  18. Neil, Thanks for good pieces of advice on anchor text usage..
    But let me ask you one thing. Article submission and guest blogging were two conventional methods of gaining (actually building) anchor text back links. Now both of them are hated by Google according to Matt Cutts. So where actually we apply these anchor text ideas from you? we can’t expect other real people of better websites (like those holy .edu site owners) to follow these guide lines of anchor text while they link to us. Neither we can ask them to link to us we like. So how actually to literally build these anchor text links as we wish? Can you write in detail about gaining or building anchor text back links in the way Google likes??

    • You can manually reach out to people and suggest an anchor text. It works although majority of the emails will get ignored…

      I will consider writing a post on that topic.

  19. Thanks to share your ideas for how to build link. Awesome article… really helpful

  20. Great stuff. I always learn something new from you.

  21. Great article on link building! I have heard so many people say that link building has become irrelevant and I have tried to argue with them time and time again that links are still one of the best ways to increase rankings, so thanks for making this very clear.

  22. Indeed another informative article Neil. We’re implementing this in our strategies, thanks!

  23. Great info Neil! One question about ‘paid links': What about Industry Directories – these seem valuable for the shopper, but 99% of the time the directories do charge for a vendor listing.

    For example, a bridal website. It would be natural for a bridal website to be listed in bridal directories. These are paid listings, but they do help the shopper. Are those considered ‘bad’ by Google?

    Thanks for your help!
    Ron

  24. Great article! This is a very hot topic right now in SEO. Some of the tests I did confirm a lot of the topics in the article. I have found the more diverse the back links linking to your site the faster you move in PR. Have a great weekend!

  25. This is really a wonderful post! Very helpful for the newbies like me. I also learn SEO and building links are so hard I think. Thank you for your advice.

  26. Hi.
    Thank you for this awesome post.
    I have just à question about EMD. If my domain is myexactmatchdomain.com can we considere that : “my exact match domain” is a brand anchor text?

  27. Beautiful Insights. I agree with you totally that the Quality and the Relevancy of the link is 100% necessary. If You are Posting the Spam Profile link just for Link building purpose, Google is watching to you with Red eyes.

    Link is always add some value about your site in your profile. If you do that you will get benefit of Link Earning strategy.

    Neil in this Article, One thing you mentioned fabulously about “Branded Links” I personally Prefer Branded link and use it. If your link Represent your Brand than Your Brand will be automatically promoted.

    This is an Excellent and very Creative Topic Neil, Kindly Share these kind of innovative ideas with us. You Rock on :)

  28. Hello Neil,In past year webmasters noticed that Google following the freshness in links and page content badly , So we all are trying some new ideas for natural linking. Wikipedia is one of the good resource for such curated,holistic, outputs links , obviously we get huge traffic and conversions . Blindly following for link juice is not great way i personally believe. Do you think so ?

  29. The visual representation of how link profiles are important was a great insight. Considering that the whole search engine was built on the back bone of how sites link to each other, the % weight given to backlinks shouldn’t surprise us.

  30. Awesome article – very well written. This comes just when I had exactly the same question in my mind.

  31. Hi sir Neil !

    The result is getting through the experience and better knowledge . I have know that !

    Thank you for and congratulations !

    My respect to you !

  32. Hi Neil,
    I have read thoroughly this post, and many thanks to you I have a clearer vision of how I can have a good link profile.
    My question is : Is there a way to analyze my sites link profile and get a good idea of my site’s link profile?

  33. This was well written.

    I’m new to SEO. I get everything you said – but my question is, what if the person embedding the link doesn’t?

    We don’t have control over who links to our pages – so how can we make sure it’s been doing right?

    Muchos thanks.

  34. Hi Neil,

    Great post to make good link profile, Nice to know though you, it is worth still more.

    Regards,
    Jyoti

  35. Great information on building a link profile. Very rarely can someon explain something so important in a very easy to understand way. I think you have accomplished this here. This is actually how I do things on my blog as well!

  36. Excellent post, so detailed and yet to the point.

  37. Thanks for the laugh with the “No I don’t care about conversion.” I felt guilty for no reason and that is pretty hilarious. Sometimes I was already doing some of what you were talking about with the anchor text, but I will like a quick tool that can give me a quick % of every anchor text right away to help me make sure I am maximizing it properly. I already have that tool in one of my programs sort of as it tells me ones I may be in danger with but it is far from being very informative and I could use something else. If anyone has a suggestion please reply to me and let me know. Thanks in advance if so..

  38. I learned a lot today. With this article i am now aware to build a good link profile. I used to do signing up with article submission site. I thought it could really help a lot to build quality links. But you open my mind into a new and very effective way to build such high quality links. Your a life saver Neil!

  39. I have been a believer of this ever since. Great post Neil.

  40. Hey Neil – You have great points, i have diff question – you added Matt’s video explaining directory & article which every SEO’r by now knows they are crap.

    But Matt agree or not they used to work in “past” & may be at that time Google didn’t had sufficient resources like they have now (Penguin, Panda etc)

    Then question is why they penalize sites that has used such methods, they used them because they work & if they don’t use there competitor will use and outrank them. If someone using those things now they are eligible to get penalty but it looks google is biased. Same thing applies in regard to Guest Posts, they use to work & people have adapted it and now they are getting penalty.

    I am not coming from penalty hit world but I read this on many online channels & people are worried…

  41. Hi Neil,
    I deeply read the whole post you have with us here and found it the best to know about the link profile. I am not good in doing SEO but this post is great for me to understand the things better for a website or a brand to grow more.

    I know the Diversity in anchor text is good and Semantically relevant anchor text is much more important and if your keyword or the semantic anchor text is exactly related to the searches made by the users you will get the best link juice.

    We all know most of the times people made searches in the form of questions and if we have the long tail keywords like you said this as a diluted anchor text it will be good and return the value we want from having a link profile. Many thanks for your help.

  42. hai Neil,

    i am reading ur posts regularly.. thanks for giving such article like this. i have done many things as you told and i am following u regulary. it is very usefull to me. In some websites, they dont mention about follow and no follow links in their page source. In that case, what would i take that for ? and how to get more do follows links?

  43. H, I am a blogger and I really like your posts. They are very helpful for Seo consultants and newbie like me. I read about you and I am learning your experience for my work. Thank you and best wishes!

  44. Junaid Jaffery :

    Hello Neil, the signs of good link profiles are well crafted.

    I always follow up your personal site and as well as a regular reader of kiss metrics and crazy eggs. one of my friend is using crazy eggs for his website, he too always admire your postings and there is lot to learn from your every post.

    Thanks..

  45. Hey Neil,

    After the penguin 2.1, I had lots of doubts about using anchor text. As I was after exact anchor text

    which hurt lots in terms of ranking and visits. You made me clear on lots of ways. God bless you!

    Well, one question is for you…

    I have been following content marketing strategy since long and for that I used to create blogs on

    following sites:

    blogger.com
    tumblr.com
    weebly.com
    sites.google.com
    drupalgardens.com
    jimdo.com
    webgarden.com
    webs.com
    wordpress.com
    en.over-blog.com
    blog.com
    webnode.com
    yola.com

    Is that viable to post fresh content on above mentioned sites and link back anchors to my original

    site (or landing pages)? And all blogs are created with name of different target keywords and thats

    what I am presuming to use brand name instead of keywords.

    Please guide me.

    Thanks in advance.
    Akram Khan :)

    • Akram, Link Wheel is outdated and i think should not be used. This was a trick in old days to get Backlinks from web 2.0 sites. Later Google flags this term and technique too.

    • That’s a lot of work… I would just focus on building up your social profiles and driving traffic to your content pages. Over time people will naturally link to you with diverse anchor text.

  46. Hi Neil,

    As usual, another informative post from your side! Greatly benefited by reading it.

    Yes, building backlinks is an important aspect of blogging. I mean, it is such a crucial factor that decides SERP rankings! But many times, we are just so busy building backlinks that we tend to remember the big picture- building up a good link profile! :)

    You’ve shared some good information and some useful insights to the topic. Things like diluted anchor text, semantically relevant are much crucial in building up a good link profile. Good to know more about the way they work.

    Also, the freshness factor is also something that caught my attention. Thanks for sharing! :)

    I’ll Kingg this post on Kingged, where I found the link to this post.

    Arun

  47. Hi Neil

    Nice post. And which is even better, I’m feeling relieved now. You proved what I’ve believed for the past 2-3 years.

    On what I’m focused when I’m doing SEO?

    Carefully building links from a thousand different quality sources. Slowly but effectively, I was always getting ranked where I wanted.

    No paid links and no shortcuts to the top.

    Keep with good work Neil.

  48. Hi Neil,

    Thanks for your wonderful post but you know sometimes it becomes cheeky while you are creating lot of links for your website and do not build a quality profile but now I am totally agree with you and I will keep myself aware while doing any link building works.

    Many thanks for your guidelines and waiting for your next post about how to build a great online presence?.

  49. Great article, Neil!

    I appreciate you clarifying how to correctly write anchor text as that is one of my weak spots in content marketing.

    Thanks!

  50. Yet again, great info. But it just keeps coming back to ‘content content content’. Legitimate content is important because we actually want GOOD traffic. Traffic that is for customers who ACTUALLY need our services. So it’s a tough game, but it’s clear that doing the right thing will help.

    Then why do so many of our competitors rank with such shady tactics?!

  51. Great article Neil ! Two questions.

    How do you stop a spammy site from linking to your good site and therefore damaging your link profile?

    And, how do comments affect a link profile. If someone comments on a reputable blog are they getting a link back to their site? Or are all comments considered ‘no follow’.

    • You can’t stop all bad sites from linking to you. Over time you will naturally see rankings increase as good sites will also link to you.

      Comments are nofollowed so they shouldn’t affect it.

  52. Neil,

    Great post. I think you said it best in the conclusion…the best thing you can do to help your SEO is to do a great job with your content marketing.

    I really enjoy your blog, thanks for sharing!

  53. I just want to clarify when you say:

    “I think it’s safe to say that a link profile accounts for the vast majority of a site’s ranking according to Google’s algorithm”

    Do you mean this above all else? As in, do you think that a page with very low quality content that for some miracle had a fantastic link profile, would still do well over a page with great content, but average link profile?

  54. Hi Neil,

    First of all congratulations for your post. It’s a great and clear explanation!

    My question is regarding to the “Vicariously compromised linking site”. How can you recognize? I mean, before trying to remove these “toxic” links how can you differenciate the sites that belong to “bad or good neighbourhoods?

    Thanks a lot,

    Máxim

  55. WOW the correct word i will be giving to the article, Was looking for the same topic on the net from last 2 days. Today just tuned to your blog and got to see the post. Really a nice work and the guide do explain the work really well.
    Looking forward to make an infographic on the same. Thanks ya for valuable information.

  56. Thanks Neil

    You have given a very good insight on how we should build our link profile. I was really looking for a post like this thanks for the help…..

    I loved the MOZ ranking factor guide

  57. Very informative Neil, thank you for this article!

    It makes me wonder though, what about links that come from websites like blogger.com or wordpress.com ?

    In itself these are high authority websites. It is farily easy to post an article on this type of website and link it to your own website. Will that boost ranking?

  58. Great article as always. I suppose at the end of the day SEO is one of those things like golf. Reasonably easy to start, takes a lifetime to master. That and I swear Matt Cutts’ job is purely to make life difficult for advertisers ;)

  59. Thanks for the excellent article Neil! I always learn a lot from reading your stuff!

  60. Hi Neil, I have created couple of free WP themes and they are available for download. So far 65K+ downloads collectively. I am getting quiet a lot link backs. Is this a bad practice?

    Here I don’t have much options to add different anchor text except few variations. Please let me know your view on this.

  61. Whenever I need answers regarding SEO, Neil Patel shows his face!

    Thanks Neil. I am new to blogging and SEO, and I am probably many newbie mistakes because I don’t know better yet. But I listened to your awesome podcast with Pat Flynn about best practices for SEO 2014, and now this article.

    Things are much more clear and now it is time to damage control my blog, hah.

    In your podcast with Pat Flynn, you suggested writing amazing in-depth guides and tutorials, aka awesome content marketing to build backlinks.

    What would your advice be to a novice who has less than 4 months experience with online marketing but who still wants to create that kind of pop!

    • I would just focus on blog posts and guest posting. In your case it is too early for you to write detailed guides and the cost would be too high. But you can consider it a year from now. :)

  62. Thanks Neil, this is really insightful article. i was gonna inquire about free WordPress themes but i found my answer on the previews comment.

  63. It’s very straightforward to find out any topic on web as
    compared to books, as I found this article at this site.

  64. Its really very nice and informative post for someone like me. Thank you Patel for your good stuff.

  65. Hey, link profile has now become a big discussion point especially after the Google Penguin update. I think diversity and anchor text keyword ratio play an important role in improving your link profile.

  66. Thanks for the article. What is your opinion / Google’s opinions on blog comments then? Such as those above me who have put their website in and now have a link from an unrelated site….?

  67. Thank you for giving me new ideas, I’ve stucked myself in difficulties nowadays, since many of my SEO strategies do not work anymore. What do you think of Paul and Angela profile links strategy?

  68. Hi Neil ,

    one question regarding domain authority
    If our content shares on social networking sites like G+, Fb and twitter. does it increase domain authority?

    thanks

  69. Speaking of Anchor Text. Doesn’t it look spammy if I would comment with a different name then my original?

  70. Hey Neil

    I was looking for “how to find good profile backlink sites” throught goole and i ended up with your article! And that’s going to help me to rethink my backlinklink strategy by focusing on content marketing! I’m gonna spend more time here i think.

    Thanks
    Lance Adams

  71. While I do agree with a lot of ideas in this entry, I find the phrase “Content Marketing is SEO” as misleading. There’s a stark difference. Content marketing can be a way of doing SEO but it is not SEO per se.

  72. Nidhi Thappar :

    Hey,

    I was searching about sitewide link topic here in quicksprout but not getting any specific article.

    Please help me out knowing this, recently i found too many links pointing to my site from a same site which i have never visited before. I have found links from /tags /categories, etc.. please let me know what is this should i disavow this site as i really dont know what is it all about, i found 130+ link from different pages of same site.

    Please let me know what can i do for this.

    Waiting for you reply.

    Thanks

    • Hi Nidhi,

      I suggest you to check for the footer link on that website or maybe a blogroll link because if you have a footer link it will appear on every page/tags/category etc because footer is most of the time same for all pages.

      Just a little knowledge I have defiantly Neil can add much more than this.

    • You should try to avoid site wide links coming into your site. I don’t have many articles on this topic, but as long as you go for high quality links, you should be fine.

      • Hi Neil,
        Thanks for reverting back. I checked that site from where i am getting the all the links, there i didn’t find any link in footer or sidebar.

        I want to ask you what should i do in this case as i am getting 130+ link from the same site. Should i disavow this site. or what should i do. please let me know about it.

        Thanks

  73. Hi Neil,

    Since you are replying to all comments so I thought why not to try my luck and ask you 1 question. Well I know the importance of having a good relevant link profile but your website need to appear on the first page of search results in order to get natural links without word of mouth or you need to have ton of targeted traffic on your website otherwise you will have to ask people to publish your high quality article on their website and that is guest posting which is now consider spam and unnatural.

    We are regularly publishing high quality articles on our blog with average length of article 800 words but still we are unable to attract search engine traffic on our blog. We are socializing it as well but still we are not getting enough search engine traffic. We are working in dry niche that is true. hint: We offer software to physicians and medical centers.

    Can you tell me how can we increase our traffic and ranking if article directories, blog commenting, link directories, profiling, link wheels, reciprocal links, guest posting, forums are all grey area in SEO then what should one do? Content Marketing is not working for us :(

    • In your case, I would go out and beg for links the old school way. See who links to your competition and beg them for a link. You can also use broken link building as well…

      I know this will be time intensive, but it works.

  74. Authorship does not however, change your search rankings by
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  75. Hello,

    Your Article is good but I am confuse how to build the links and what links is good or bad for my website and please explain the SEO Strategy working for off page

  76. I was suggested this website by my cousin. I’m not sure whether this post is written by him as nobody else know such detailed about my problem.

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  77. Hi Neil
    I hear what you say about directories but what do you say to Brian Dean who says that directories are still important? As you said yourself, he knows what he is talking about when it comes to backlinks.

  78. Hi Neil,

    Many doubts have been cleared in your casual informative language. You are helping many budding experts with your not very technically heavy sentences.

    Just one thing- as seo is page wise, if I get 20 different bachlinks from 20 pages of a niche website to 20 pages of my pages,
    what will be effect?

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  88. I did a mistake with my link profile and paid the price in the recent google update.

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