When it comes to search engines, all backlinks are not equal. For backlinks to be considered high quality, they must be acquired from trustworthy and relevant websites. For instance, getting countless of backlinks for an attorney websites from plumbing companies or hotels will not be considered relevant. What would be relevant is to acquire backlinks from high-quality websites and blogs that are strictly focused on legal matters. Unfortunately, many SEO companies continue to pursue backlinks from irrelevant websites and blogs, causing a potential penalty from Search Engines. In addition to quality and relevancy, it’s important to understand Do-Follow and No-Follow links. Do-Follow links are those that pass link juice from the link giving domain to the recipient domain or web page while No-Follow Links do not. Ideally, you should acquire do-follow links, however, no-follow backlinks from relevant and quality websites can have a positive impact on organic SEO ranking. Hence, a certain percentage of your backlinks should also be from no-follow links. Now let’s look at the two categories of inbound links.
The links that are most valuable according to Google are the natural ones given by other website owners of their own accord. This is far more effective than requesting webmasters to link to you. However, acquiring natural links is a challenging and time-consuming process, and few people will link to your website just because, which is the reason why these links are so valuable. To gain natural backlinks to your site, you must create super awesome content that can be used as a resource by webmasters. But creating awesome content is not enough, you must also reach out to influencers in your niche market and request them to consider your content for their audience. This is a monumental task and one of the main reasons why legitimate white hat link building is an expensive task. There are SEO companies who specialize in backlink building only – and they charge a fortune for it.
Often considered spammy, the majority of search engines continue to devalue self-created links that appear in private blog networks, ( a collection of privately owned websites and blogs that are created mainly for the purpose of manipulating Search Engine rankings through backlinks) non-moderated blog comments, guestbooks, signatures, low quality article directories and business profile sites, mainly created for the purpose of getting a backlink.
Google has time and again instructed webmasters to stay away from buying links from other websites for the purpose of SEO. In fact, one of the surefire ways for a website to get penalized by Google is to buy a large amount of paid backlinks. Google believes in providing high quality and relevant results to searchers and it wants to reward webmasters who earn their way rather than buying their way to the top of Google Search results. Here is Matt Cutts on the topic of paid links: