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The Different Types Of Backlinks You Need To Know For SEO

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Backlinks are when another website links to your website. When a website receives good quality backlinks, so-called ‘link juice’ is passed to that website, acting as a seal of approval in the eyes of search engines.

Overall, backlinks are important because backlinks are a key ranking factor, and can determine where your pages sit within search engine queries. By using SEO software (i.e. Ahrefs or Semrush), you can monitor the backlinks your website has. 

However, an important thing to know is that not all backlinks are created equal. While having a high quantity of backlinks is desirable, it is the quality of the backlinks (i.e. links from websites that have a high domain authority) that really counts.

At Imaginaire, our SEO specialists would be more than happy to help you with all things backlinks, which are an off-page SEO specialism. 

In the meantime, here are some of the top backlink types you need to know about.

Dofollow Backlinks Vs Nofollow Backlinks

Backlinks of all kinds can be considered as dofollow or nofollow. 

Dofollow backlinks pass link juice from the linking page to the linked page, making them highly beneficial for SEO. 

However, nofollow backlinks which have the rel=”nofollow” attribute do not pass link juice to the linked page. These links often signal to search engines that the linking website does not endorse the content it is linking to. 

There can be advantages and disadvantages to using either dofollow or nofollow backlinks. The correct type must be used to avoid spammy practices and encourage high quality backlinks. 

Natural Backlinks

If you write a really great piece of content that users find genuinely helpful, then one of the rewards can include free and organic backlinks to your content. Overall, when a backlink hasn’t been paid for, and hasn’t been strategically distributed, it is considered a natural backlink. There are many advantages to natural backlinks, especially if many websites point to your website citing the quality of your content. 

Editorial Backlinks

Creating high quality infographics, online tools, online calculators, studies, research, guides or tutorials can result in editorial backlinks. Simply put, users will link to the editorial content either because it is useful or as a condition of sharing the content on their website. 

Guest Blogging Backlinks

One of the classic ways to acquire a backlink is to write a piece for a website with the agreement that a backlink to your website (along with strategic anchor text) will be included. Caution should be applied with guest blogging, as it is essential to avoid spammy websites such as private blog networks (PBN). 

Forum Backlinks

It might surprise you to learn that backlinks from the likes of Reddit, Quora and TripAdvisor can be extremely advantageous for SEO. Many forum websites have high domain authority, meaning questions or answers may also appear in search engine listings. If a link to your website is included in any popular forums or reviews, then the backlink can offer a lot of value. 

Footer Backlinks

It is common for website designers, marketers or widget makers to include a backlink to their website. Sometimes the backlink appears as a condition of the subscription level, and other times developers include it as standard. As a product maker, including a backlink in a website footer can soon accumulate lots of backlinks for your website, making this a very handy hint to know. 

Press Release Backlinks

As a business, you may have exciting news or research that press outlets would deem newsworthy, especially if the content aligns with the audience or interests of the publication. When drafting a press release, you can include a link to your website. If the publication runs the story, they will likely include the link to your website. Depending on the domain authority of the publication, press release backlinks can be extremely valuable. 

Edu And Gov Backlinks

Backlinks from educational or government institutions are the gold dust of all backlinks. While very difficult to acquire, they do offer the highest value in terms of domain authority and link juice. 

Mend Broken Backlinks

This is a special type of technique whereby content marketers email website owners that have broken backlinks on their website and provide a relevant alternative. While there is no guarantee that the website owner will accept your backlink, it can sometimes result in additional backlinks being created. 

What Makes A Good Backlink?

  • Originates from a reputable source
  • Ideally has a high domain authority (DA)
  • Is a dofollow link
  • Uses relevant anchor text
  • Diverse backlinks from different websites
  • Has topical relevance to your website
  • The linking website has high traffic 

Some Top Tips For Avoiding Bad Backlinks

You’ve probably had spam emails from companies offering you backlinks. Or seen websites where you can pay to get backlinks. Best of all, random people offering to get you backlinks for a nominal amount on freelancer websites.

Simply put, spammy backlinks won’t help your website — they will harm it.

The only way to avoid low-quality, spammy backlinks is to focus on producing quality content to encourage as many organic backlinks as possible. For strategic or paid backlinks, should be arranged through a professional and reputable SEO company. 

Imaginaire – Discover Our SEO Services In Dubai 

Are you struggling to attract high-quality backlinks to your website?

Let the SEO experts at Imaginaire help. 

Based in Dubai, we provide SEO services to businesses from the UK. Take a look at our SEO case studies to learn more. 

You can also tell us more about your website by filling out our contact form or by giving us a call on 0115 697 1158.


Rachael is a content executive with Imaginaire. With hands-on experience with all things marketing, she has the knowledge and know-how to explain and advise almost any topic you can think of!

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