By David Stellato | Vice President, Client Strategy
There are a variety of on- and off-page factors that can affect a website’s search rankings. One of the most important elements from an off-page perspective is the links pointing to your site. It’s crucial to maintain the quality and integrity of your website’s on-page factors. It’s also important to ensure the same standards are applied for your site’s backlink profile.
Here are five reasons why you should perform regular link audits on your website:
- Link values change over time. Yesterday’s great links may not be as prodigious as they once seemed. Frequently review all pages that are linking to your site to ensure they still contain high-quality content that is relevant to your site and your customer or reader. You may also discover quality links that you thought were still linking to you that may not be and can reclaim them.
- Over-optimization of keyword anchor text. Old link-building strategies could be hindering your search rankings. Keyword anchor text methodologies that were best practices years ago are now considered taboo and can impair your progress. If you are not the original site owner or the first person to do work on this site, chances are you will have to make some adjustments.
- Be careful with site-wide links and run-of-site (ROS) links. You may have a golden link pointing to your site, but the webmaster may have placed it in their site’s template, causing the link to show up on all 10,000 of its pages. While you may think this is good from a visibility standpoint, it may come across as spam to the search engines. It’s important to note, however, that not all site-wide/ROS links are bad. Unfortunately, they can also be an indicator to the search engines of a suspicious link neighborhood or reciprocal link program.
- Negative SEO, spammers and scrapers. We live in a competitive world and while you may play by a higher set of moral standards that does not mean your competitors do so as well. Your competitors maybe going out and placing links back to your site on toxic Web properties. There may also be automated scripts out there copying content off your site (which contains your linking structure and navigation) and by doing so inadvertently cause you to have lots of low quality links pointing at you.
- Unnatural link warnings, penalties and filters. If you have a website that is more than six months old chances are you may have received an unnatural link warning (even if you have never built one link to your site). It’s important to do your homework and see if this was sent by accident or if there is merit to the warning and action needs to be taken. Penalties can range from a single page to an entire site level, so it is best to know what you are up against before acting.
The bottom line is if you have never done an audit of your backlink portfolio or conducted one in the last few months, you are long overdue. If you have any questions on how to execute a proper audit of you backlinks or are looking for some guidance on current best practices, our team is available to assist. Contact us today.