SEO Trends: Backlinks Might Become Less Important

SEO Trends: Backlinks Might Become Less Important


For years, a major component of good website SEO was getting backlinks for a website. A backlink is a link that goes from another website back to yours. Google viewed it as a signal of your website’s authority; if a website is linking back to you, it must think what you have to say is important and useful to searchers.

Now, though, things are starting to change. Over the years, webmasters have abused backlinks, undertaking a variety of schemes to game the system and get backlinks by the dozens. This has led Google and other search engines to crack down on the practice.

Plus, social media has become more important, and has started to become a major component of good SEO. Does that mean backlinks are being replaced?

In a recent interview, Matt Cutts, the resident guru at Google, talked about backlinks for websites and discussed their future. He said that over time, backlinks will not be as important as they are now, primarily because there are other factors that will steadily replace them in importance.

What does that mean for you? Should you still worry about getting backlinks for your website?

For SEO purposes, you absolutely should. They’re not going away, and good, quality backlinks – backlinks from authoritative websites – are still golden. They are also good sources of traffic that any website needs.

It’s just that there are other factors that are increasing in importance. A robust social media presence will be required, as will an authoritative voice of a brand to act as an expert. That is already happening with Google Authorship, and will only become more important with time.

Make sure your backlinks are solid, that they are relevant and come from authoritative websites with good reputations in your field. Do that, and you’ll continue to help your website’s SEO now and in the future.