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2 Backlink Tools You Can Use to Check Link Quality

In my previous post, I shared tips on how to maintain a good PageRank score, and the first tip was to do a backlink audit. But how do we go about that?

Well, you’re in luck because I am now about to discuss a list of backlink tools that you can use to check the quality of links your website is receiving. Before I start, I will leave a disclaimer that I am not any way affiliated to the brands mentioned. I am merely informing you that these backlink tools exist on the internet. At the end of the day, it’s up to you if you choose to use them on your website.

Connected Puzzle pieces

Connecting related piece together.

With the 2 tools mentioned below, you can easily monitor particular links and discover new ways on how to improve link quality. So, here they are:

1. SE Ranking

  • SE Ranking can help you monitor up to 75000 backlinks per account. First, you need to choose how often you would like to check the ranking. Then, you will choose a plan that fits your needs. For a daily ranking check, the cheapest option would be $39 per month.
  • Other than backlinks, SE Ranking offers a wide variety of tools to help you strengthen your SEO strategy. There are tools that will help in performing a full website audit or web page audit, generating reports, doing keyword research, categorizing keywords, and exploring backlinks.
  • However, let’s focus on the Backlink Checker tool. With this, you will be able to see all incoming links to a website. So, whether the website is yours or it’s a rival site, you will be able to view the backlinks.
  • Meanwhile, the “monitoring” part is where things get tight. You can only monitor a limited to a specific number links, and do the following:
    • Check the backlink’s status.
    • See the anchor text, and the date when the link added.
    • Know the destination URL.
    • Get the exact Domain Trust score.
  • The Backlink Monitoring tool allows you to have a more in-depth idea with the backlinks you have, and you get daily or weekly reports depending on your current subscription plan.
  • Overall, SE Ranking provides an array of extensive data that is easy to understand. Plus, the clean interface makes it simpler to find and look at the number you need to know. Aside from that, the automatic reporting feature allows to generate comprehensible reports for your clients to read.

2. LinkMiner

  • If you need help in finding specific backlinks and you wish to look for new opportunities to backlink, then, LinkMiner is the perfect tool.
  • LinkMiner currently has 3 subscription plans: Baisc, Premium, and Agency. With Basic, you are allowed to retrieve 2,000 backlinks in LinkMiner per day. The maximum number is 15,000 backlinks, and you need an Agency subscription for that.
  • For the backlink analysis, the LinkMiner Basic plan allows you to evaluate 500 backlinks per day. When you start analyzing backlinks, you can immediately see the website and its URL along with the anchor text used.
  • Moreover, the analyzer tool categories the links as either part of a Q&A section, blog post, or a forum, making it convenient to know what backlinks are effective and what are not. Also, LinkMiner has other metrics you can use like Citation Flow, Trust Flow, and Do/NoFollow tags.

How NOT to Endanger Your PageRank Scores?

We all know that Google stopped making PageRank scores to the public. However, just because it is not available to the public, it does not mean that PageRank ain’t relevant anymore. I busted some myths when I posted:  Clearing the Misconceptions About PageRank (Part 1) and Clearing the Misconceptions About PageRank (Part 2)!

Clearly, no one has a clue what the PageRank score a particular web page is. If someone claims to know the exact score, then, you better not believe those lies! Now, the question is… Can we do something to improve PageRank scores? Obviously, we can’t know to boost these scores because we dont’t even know what the exact PR score is.

stop road sign

What are things to avoid?

However, we can discuss the things to avoid. In order to not bring your PageRank scores down, here are some tips you can apply:

Perform a backlink test.

  • As what I’ve said multiple times, links play an important role in having better rankings. By doing a backlink analysis, you will be able to know the backlinks you are getting. If you feel like the links are unnecessary and spammy, then, choose to disavow these links using Google’s disavow tool.

The fewer clicks, the better.

  • When you want better ranks, you should make your content closer to your homepage. Wait, what does this mean? A user should not make more than 3 page clicks. So, from point A to B, the number clicks should be 3 (or less) ideally.
  • Of course, not all pages can be shortened and can be accessed within a snap. At least, keep the important web pages closer. For the other web pages, you can provide breadcrumbs for a faster navigation.

Use relevant anchor texts.

  • When you link 2 related posts, you would obviously provide a link to this post. Remember, when you link, you should use relevant keywords. Use an appropriate anchor text with the basing on the post.
    • Why do this? Because…
    • The users can easily know what the content is about.
    • This would mean easier navigation and effective website optimization on your part.
  • Choosing the right anchor texts just won’t help the users, but also the search engines.

Consider the right placement of the links.

  • Aside from using the appropriate anchor texts, it is best to find the right placement of these links as well. Don’t just randomly add this link because you want more views.
  • Relevancy should be a factor when you are adding a link. So, you are adding a link because you found a connection between the two published content.
  • Remember, just because they are related, it does mean you just keep on linking. Overdoing links will also taint your PageRank scores. Ultimately, you need to find the right balance on where to put and how many links to put.

Do a link audit.

  • By doing an SEO audit, you will know what strategy works and what does not.
  • You are going to scan for broken links, and fix the internal linking system so that the users can flawlessly browse from one point to another.
  • Make sure also you have customized your 404 pages to aid users in case they clicked a dead link.

Related: 5 Things to Do After an SEO Audit

Clearing the Misconceptions About PageRank (Part 1)

According to an abstract on Stanford’s Computer Science department posted years ago, PageRank was even mentioned in this paper. Sergey Brin and Lawrence Page, the researchers, shared that PageRank “brought order to the web”. Named after Larry Page, PageRank is Google Search’s algorithm that is used to rank web pages accordingly.

an arrow indicating an upward trend

Is PageRank still heading an upward trend?

However, does PageRank have any value in this day and age? In 2019, can we still consider PageRank important in the entire Google hierarchy? For this blog post, I will tackle all the prevalent questions, and bust some myths still lurking about PageRank.

  1. PageRank is an outdated metric, right?

  • To be honest, PageRank is already mentioned in a research paper made during the late 90s. Seriously, most of its citations were works during the 90s and yet PageRank is already a prominent during that time.
  • In 2016, PageRank said goodbye to the public eye. The last known update before that was still in 2013. For something introduced in 1999, PageRank is something outdated. There’s no better way to say it, but it’s really old.
  • However, PageRank is one of the pillars of Google. It was made to help users get relevant information and to avoid useless content during their web search. Up to this day, Google has doing a great job in giving us search results that are useful and functional.
  • Aside from that, PageRank has obviously changed, and it is not the same metric as we all grew up. They were changes in its algorithm and Google released major updates as posted on this article right here. An obvious move made to cope up with the changing digital landscape.
  • Most of all, there was document on USpto.gov that stated Google wanted to extent the patent given to PageRank. The date reflected was April 24, 2018. So, this would mean that PageRank is still here to stay. Obviously, it may not be visible to the public, but it is definitely still connected on how we search things online.
  1. Google is not posting updates about PageRank. So, it’s not probably implemented, right?

  • Just because something is not publicly updated, it does not mean it is gone FOREVER. Remember, there was no official word regarding the discontinuation or cancellation of PageRank.
  • Well, we just know that it bid goodbye to the public eye. For sure, something is brewing behind the scenes. Google just might surprise us with a major public update soon.
  • In case you forgot, Google’s Gary Illyes tweeted, “…we’re still using PageRank (and 100s of other signals) in ranking.”
  • Because Google does not disclose PageRank scores to the public, misconception about its discontinuation easily spread like wildfire.
  • Before, users have convenient access to the PageRank metric. You could see the scores of any web page you are visiting with the help of the Google Toolbar. However, this lead to the rampant use of spammy links. Thus, Google had to stop publicizing these scores because unpopular websites are milking reputable and top-rated sites.
  • Because of this unfortunate incident, Google gave the public an option to “nofollow”. With this tag, website admins can stop PageRank from taking these links into consideration when ranking pages in the future.

Google Is Heading a New Direction

Late last year, Google celebrated its 20th anniversary. On this important milestone, Google announced that it aims to improve Google Search in the next 2 decades. They are closing a chapter, and start a new chapter.

Google homepage reflected on the laptop screen.

What does the future holds for Google?

If you haven’t heard about it, I published a post called The New Google Search Is Here!

What Google reiterated?

They shared that there would be old principles that would remain relevant:

  • The FOCUS on the user. The user should come first despite the shift. Whether they are looking for songs, they are downloading content, or merely exploring the web, they should always be the priority.
  • Information is given as fast as possible. The Page Rank algorithm of Google continues to value the speed of sharing information. Of course, the information should also be relevant and useful to the user.
  • Applying an algorithmic approach. Billions of searches are inputted on Google’s search bar every single day. 15% of these searches are new. So, it means Google is also learning from these searches entered by the user. One way to handle the enormous scale of queries and searches is through an algorithmic approach. Consider the searches of yesterday, and anticipating related searches in the future.
  • Test before adding new changes. Lastly, it is always important to test the changes. Google provided a set of rater guidelines for the public to read. In 2017 alone, Google was able to run over 200,000 tests that produced more than 2,400 changes in search patterns.

What does this mean for YOU?

Continue to:

These changes would also mean a shift of direction for Google Search:

  • Remembering the user’s journey.
    • Google is not only concerned with giving answers. They want to part of the user’s journey, and allow the users to “continue where they left off.”
    • This is evident in their services like Google Chrome. Now, people can restore their recently closed tab. Also, users have the option to restore their last session. Additionally, Google can provide related searches and recommend content basing from the search history.
  • Giving answers even if users don’t make a query.
    • Now, Google focuses on the “future.” It anticipates what the user might want. Google aims to help without needing to search.
    • How? Through Google Discover! This new venture intends to provide evergreen content. Basing from the user’s preferences, Google Discover will suggest content that the users might like.
  • Moving towards multimedia content.
    • Google is becoming more visual. Instead of focusing on texts, they are making it a point to add more visual capabilities.
    • They are making algorithmic changes to accommodate more videos and provide them with closed captions (CC). Newly released videos are given a general overview on several topics.
    • Also, image searches have changed. Google now gives better rankings to the content with captions. This is why you should always provide alt text to your images.
    • Lastly, Google Lens helps you to search what you see. It allows users to do a visual search based on objects detected by the camera. Google’s AI can recognize images, scan and translate texts.

The New Google Search Is Here!

With so many things happening at Google, it’s hard to keep up. These enormous or trivial changes may be happening right before our very eyes and yet we fail to notice it. From algorithm changes to the ways online marketing evolves, there are surely developments that are happening behind the scenes.

a screenshot of Google search

Clearly, Google tends to lean on lessening the actual search process. This would mean that search engines might be of less use. There would be more recommendations depending on the user’s preference. Now, I will explain to you these changes and how it affects SEO.

Google Discover

Google Discover started out as Google Feed. Back in 2016, it was introduced to the public. However, Google applied a major update in October 2018. Now, Google Discover’s goal is to recommend content basing from the user’s search history and behavior. So, all the suggestions will be personalized and will totally depend on the specific user’s choices.

These features were added to the newly updated Google Discover:

  • More image and video suggestions were added.
  • There are headers to indicate the results.
  • It now features more evergreen content.
  • Users can send their feedback if they want more (or less) of the recommendation given to them.
  • Google reiterates that the recommendations are personalized.

Google Discover is not something new. In fact, Facebook uses the same strategy. You don’t have to “like” a fan page to get updates. Related pages will automatically show up on your news feed.

It is all around to be honest, and it’s not just Facebook, social media platforms such as Twitter, YouTube and Instagram, are also doing the same. According to a report by CNET, 70% of the time spent on YouTube are because of a series of video recommendations.

What does this mean?

Obviously, the future is heading towards content recommendation and less of content searching. This totally alters the game of SEO. Will Google Discover surpass the 70% of YouTube? More importantly, will people rely on recommendations or will they continue to choose to search for what they want? Only time will tell.

Google Assistant

Google Assistant was first introduced in February 2017. The Android users would be familiar with this tool. As time passes, it has become more prominent. Google Assistant is now geared towards the user interaction. Thus, decreasing the dependence on search tools in terms of web browsing.

The Google Assistant is capable of doing the following:

  • Help the user search the web.
  • Schedule appointments, and events.
  • Display the user’s Google account information.
  • Change the device settings.

The major upgrade would probably be the ability to have two-way conversations. Now, interaction won’t be unilateral as the users will get real-time answers from Google Assistant. There is no need to look for the best possible answer because Google Assistant will do it for you.

What is in store for us?

  • In addition to Google Assistant, there is also a new development called Google Express. Users can now quickly add products to their shopping cart and purchase the said items through the help of Google Assistant.
  • There is also Google Duplex.  This upcoming tool will make scheduling appointments easier. Through Google Assistant, users can call different businesses and schedule an appointment.

In the future, if there are more users dependent on Google Assistant, there would be an obvious change on how we view web browsing. People won’t rely on Google search anymore. Thus, businesses should find ways to adapt to these changes in algorithms.

 

The Different Social Media Platforms

social media appsThere are so many social media websites out there that you can choose from. The question is, what social media websites are best suited for your brand?

If you are ready for the experience on social media, here are social media sites you can choose from.

  • FACEBOOK has 1.65 billion very active users and it is one of the most well-known platforms for personal and business use. This is a good venue to post updates, photos, news with the users who follow or “like” you. Your business fans visit the site to know what the latest in your company is and see photos or explore your events. Facebook is now using activities to qualify the market that needs your brand. It uses social graph and their ads are effective too.
  • TWITTER is a concise and easy way to communicate with your audience. It has 310 million users and still growing in number. This micro-blogging service, permit short messages that can be sent and received from consumers and potential clients.

    Use hashtags (#) as your key tool. These will surely reach a broad audience than just followers. This is when users involve themselves in a conversation. You can read more about it in this Twitter guide.

  • GOOGLE + is Google’s version of a social networking site. It is like Facebook but it has an additional feature of being able to create “circles”. This separates your followers in many different groups. This is a good system to know which group you would want your announcement to be shared. No other social media can do this.
  • YOUTUBE is another social media that can also widen your outreach. This can be done through Google search results. A grand total of 6 billion hours of video are being watched every month. You must make a good video, otherwise, you will get many negative comments. YouTube also offers marketers the chance to promote their products or clients through its target group. You can also post videos speaking on a topic or webinars where you can educate your audience.
  • PINTEREST is a distinctive platform for marketing. You will post clickable pictures with just a short caption. Every image must be good in quality and should pop-out in your feeds. Link back your images to your page or a related blog. Your caption should be keyword optimized as your caption is exactly how your pin will show when visitors browse.
  • Linkedln shows job experience and professional thoughts that is why it is an important site to those in B2B. Linkedln is not just a tool to drive traffic but establishing though leadership, recruiting, and prospecting. There are less conversation in this site, but you can meet people from the same industry. Ask and others will answer. This can lead to a conversation. It will show that you are an expert in your field.

These websites were in list the list because these sites are where the people are. The more people using it, the more you can convince to give your products a chance. There are other sites you can utilize like blog sites, online photo-sharing services, coupon sites, customer review sites, location-based marketing sites, and the list goes on. Choose the website that fits your brand.