15 August 2013 | Team Tamar

How to measure the effectiveness of a link

15648707-rusty-ships-anchor-chain-on-the-sandIf there’s anything the Tamar SEO team has really fine-tuned over the years, it’s how to assess the quality of an incoming link. Over the past 18 years we have assessed links to our clients’ websites on a wide variety of factors – as Google develop and change their algorithm, what they look for in a link has also changed. Keeping up with this ever-changing process is a tricky one, but here’s a few tips that might help you assess the quality of an incoming link.

Understanding the Niche

Before you judge the effectiveness and potential value of a link, you need to understand the market you are working with. Here at Tamar, the SEO team has found numerous ways to tackle that issue. The best way to do this is to figure out who your client’s customers are; not only who they are, but what they are likely to be interested in.

For instance, if your client is a reputable investment company, a link coming from a website in their customers niche is likely (but not guaranteed) to be deemed as more relevant than a generic one. A link from a website about golf, holidays and personal banking would be relevant for the target audience along with having the potential for a higher CTR – a secondary but “bonus” factor from a good link.

Research

There are numerous ways you can quantify the value of a link. The Tamar SEO team use advanced operators to penetrate Google to compare links and assess their quality.

Another way to assess the potential strength of a link is to take a look at how influential the site owner is on social media. A link from someone with a strong social following, along with a strong DA (domain authority) increases the likelihood in that link being one that will appear healthy in your monthly ranking and link building reports.

Whilst the importance of links in an SEO strategy seems to fluctuate from one year to the next, the value of links in a website’s SEO performance is hard to argue. Having said that, Google has begun to release a series of algorithm updates – link building is no longer just based on a quantity of links using a set number of anchor text, the focus now is very much on the inbound and outbound link ratio and the strength in where those links come from.

Engaging Content 

Gaining links is one way to gain a positive backlink profile and seeking potential clicks to the site you are optimising, but you must also check that the content surrounding the link is relevant to the niche and of course engaging enough for readers to then think; “I really like this article, I want to know more!”, only then will you get a chance someone to click onto the link. Of course, most of the time you’ll have very little say in where your natural link comes from – but that doesn’t mean you can’t review the location to work out how valuable a link it might be – and whether you can replicate it.

Evaluating the Metrics

The Tamar SEO team likes to work with sites that have great backlink profiles. Remember that links are just one part of a site’s SEO profile, so don’t get too hung up on the fine-details.

Team Tamar