• Digital Marketer

Types of Backlinks

After having discussed backlinks and why they are important in building your website authority, it's time to know the different types of backlinks available.

Backlinks are an integral part of SEO and the right type of backlink can help boost your page ranking.


On a high-level backlinks are classified into :

  • Internal and External

  • Inbound and Outbound

  • Do-Follow and No-Follow

  • Natural and Unnatural

Internal and External Backlinks

Internal backlinks are the links that point to another page of the same website while external backlinks are the links that point to another website.


Inbound and Outbound Backlinks

While External links are links to another website they can be further classified depending on the page flow. If your website is pointing to another website page then these links are outbound links. If another website is pointing to your website then these are called inbound links. Inbound links are generally called backlinks that we refer to in SEO.


Do-Follow and No-Follow Backlinks

External links can further be classified based on search engine reachability as Do-Follow and No-Follow.

Do-Follow links can be reached by both users and search engines, while No-Follow links can only be reached by users while these links will be partially ignored by search engines. When we say partially, this means search engines do recognize these links as worthy while determining the page authority but to save your website from being penalized due to unrelated or paid content, it is advisable to use no-follow links.


Sponsored and UGC Backlinks

While No-Follow links are an indication to search engines that they can be ignored, search engines can still crawl the pages if the no-index tag is not used. In practice, No-Follow links are unrelated content or paid content. If the content is related but is not organic and has the ability to increase the traffic count to your website, then it is advisable to specify the attributes like "sponsored "or "ugc". In both these scenarios, you are telling the search engine that though this content is not organic and goes against Google Webmaster Guidelines, don't penalize the website. Sponsored tag indicates the content is paid in nature and "ugc" indicates it is user-generated content like unrelated links in comments when approved needs to indicate "ugc" for google to not penalize such content.


Natural and Unnatural Backlinks

As the name suggests these links are classified based on their natural find. For instance, if the links are found through related content from other websites or social media and these links direct the reader to relevant content, then the search engine considers these links as natural links. While there may be instances where users may have placed links in forums or groups just to attract traffic and are mostly unrelated content and also the region where the links are placed does not enrich the reader experience, then these links are termed as unnatural links. Website owners generally tag these links as no-follow to avoid penalty, but if these links are tagged do-follow and are unnatural then this may impact the domain authority of the site and hence the page ranking.


Now you understand the different types of backlinks the search engines and users detect and how they have an impact on your page ranking. It is always advisable to have natural links with relevant content for growing your website traffic.

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