Types of Backlinks in SEO (15 Different Off-Page Backlinks Types)

Backlinks- A highly loved and sought-after work in the digital space. Ask any marketer or business owner, and they will always want backlinks. They are like endorsements that can give your business an edge over your competitors and make your site more credible. 

When you get backlinks from top websites, it means they vouch for your content, product, or service, which improves your site’s trustworthiness and authenticity. With quality backlinks from reputed and authoritative websites, you can climb up in search engine results and drive more organic traffic.

Unfortunately, not all backlinks have a positive impact on a website. Only a few businesses are able to acquire the links that actually work and place them higher in SERPs for competitive keywords. 

Link building is tricky and you need to have a clear understanding of different backlink types to avoid any mistake or penalty.

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What Are Backlinks in SEO?

Backlinks, also known as inbound or incoming links, are hyperlinks from one website to another. They play a significant role in search engine rankings as Google assesses backlinks to determine the authority, credibility, and relevance of a site. 

Quality backlinks can lead to organic traffic. Hence, businesses spare no effort or resources when it comes to investing in link building. The more links from reputed websites, the higher the chances of achieving top ranks in SERPs. To learn how to find quality backlinks and build a strong backlink portfolio, sign up for our SEO course and get trained by marketing experts. 

Backlinks are categorized into two major types:

1. Do-follow Links

These are the most important links in SEO, as they tell search engines that the content on the page is trustworthy. These links signify that the linked page offers valuable information and knowledge that can answer a specific search query. 

These are considered endorsements, adding to your site’s credibility and authority. Search engines trust your pages more, which improves their SEO performance, and you can see a surge in their rankings. This will ultimately drive more traffic and make your site a success. 

2. No-follow Links

These may not be as crucial as do-follow links, but they are still considered vital for an effective backlink strategy. These links tell search engines to ignore the content on the linked pages as it’s not relevant. They play no role in search engine rankings. 

Now, let’s take a look at different types of backlinks you must be aware of to craft a successful link-building strategy. 

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15 Types of Backlinks to Use for SEO

types of backlinks in seo

We have listed 15 backlink types, each with its set of pros and cons. As you start building links, it’s important that you understand each of them clearly. 

  1. Editorial Backlinks
  2. Guest Post Backlinks
  3. Organic Backlinks
  4. Links from Forums and Comments
  5. Press Release Backlinks
  6. Acknowledgment Backlinks
  7. Testimonial Backlinks
  8. Links from Images
  9. Links from Directories
  10. Influencer-generated Backlinks
  11. Footer Links
  12. Paid Links
  13. Badge Backlinks
  14. PBN Backlinks
  15. Free Tool Backlinks

1. Editorial Backlinks

Editorial backlinks are outbound links acquired from news agency websites because they find your content valuable. These links come from bug publications and highly authoritative sites that are picky about the links they mention on their platforms. So, you have to craft rich and relevant content. 

You can gain these links by using services that connect experts and journalists, such as HaB2BW and HARO. Your idea must be unique and backed by data so that it can find a place in leading publications. 

2. Guest Post Backlinks

Guest posts are a source of authority backlinks and a major ranking factor in the SEO community. You acquire these links by creating and publishing useful and high-quality content on third-party sites within your industry.

Guest posts can be paid or unpaid, depending on the agreement between the website publishing the content and the one acquiring a link. These links are a reliable and integral part of any link-building strategy, as they not only influence your search engine rankings but also drive referral traffic. Moreover, they make your site more credible and relevant within your niche. 

Don’t choose random sites to increase the number of guest posts and links. Pick only reputable guest posting sites that accept only well-researched content. 

3. Organic Backlinks

Organic links are placed naturally because somebody finds your content worth linking to. The person may think your content is beneficial for his readers, adding value to their site and offering valuable information to the audience. 

Google considers these types of backlinks in SEO as a vote in favor of your content. So, these links must be organic and unpaid. Develop informative and quality content to increase the chances of gaining these links. 

Search engines prefer organic or natural links, so make sure you read all the guidelines related to them. 

4. Links from Forums and Comments

Forums are platforms where people discuss a certain topic and share knowledge. These channels can help you build links, but you must place your links to educate people and offer information as an industry expert. If you focus on increasing the number of links through forums, you will lack quality, which can adversely affect your SEO

Commenting under blogs and articles is also a popular way to create links. They are easy to acquire but are considered irrelevant and low quality. Also, search engines don’t consider them while assessing the credibility of a site as they know about comment spam and treat these links with caution. 

Also Read: Top SEO Project Ideas & Topics for 2024 (Beginners To Advanced)

5. Press Release Backlinks

If you want to pitch news or make an announcement, a press release is the best option. It helps you tell people about your business and the latest updates, such as a product launch, upcoming event, or exciting deals. 

Along with publishing the news on your site, you also post it on other relevant platforms so it reaches a wider audience faster. If done strategically and wisely, it can help your business gain exceptional brand exposure and support your SEO efforts. 

Companies prefer these links to inform the target audience about current events or activities and get attention for the brand. Press releases on other sites are a sure-shot way to acquire links from reliable sources, especially from content that is all about your business. 

For these links, prefer branded, CTAs, or natural-looking anchor texts. 

6. Acknowledgment Backlinks

A business can build acknowledgment links by sponsoring an event, giving away gifts, making a donation, or addressing the audience through speech. 

These types of link building in SEO are best for companies that need to interact with people directly. To create these links, track your competitors to learn about the events they are participating in, find the source of their links, and craft your strategy to make the best of every opportunity. 

7. Testimonial Backlinks

These links are earned through customer reviews or testimonials about products or services.

Businesses encourage clients to share their experiences and feedback on different platforms and link to their websites or social media profiles. This adds credibility to their brand and boosts sales. 

8. Links from Images

As the name suggests, these links are added within images and redirect users to a website or website. Images can be in the form of graphs, infographics, maps, product pictures, or visual examples. 

Webpages with images are likely to earn 555% more quality backlinks. Find out pages that are using your images without giving credit. Reach out to the webmaster to claim your link. You can make images more discoverable through image optimization, which includes using quality and original images with descriptive file names and alt tags. 

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9. Links from Directories

You can acquire directory backlinks by submitting your website to local directories or business listings. Businesses with brick-and-mortar stores generally use these backlinks types in SEO to improve their local SEO effort and drive people to their physical stores. 

Google often refrains websites and businesses from mass submission to local directories. However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t build these links. Focus on linking from high-quality and reputable directories relevant to your business to make links count. 

Ensure that your business information, including business name, contact details, and address, is consistent across all listings because Google is quite strict about this. 

10. Influencer-generated Backlinks

Influencers are famous personalities with a huge following on their social media profiles. People trust them and their recommendations. They can influence buying decisions and help your brand gain popularity. 

Businesses collaborate with influencers relevant to their industry to get links to their website or social media page. Google considers these links a vote of confidence from a reputed and credible source.

Moreover, influencer-generated links align with E-E-A-T algorithm. You can connect with influencers in your niche and request them to review or recommend your brand. They can post a video or image or run a contest on their page and link the post to your site. 

11. Footer Links

The footer is the section at the bottom of a website. Businesses use this space to place their links, which appear on every web page. 

Companies use the footer section to add partner or client backlinks. These are internal links that are crucial to websites, enabling visitors to navigate and find required information without hassle. They can also be external links, such as adding a link of the company’s site that designed your office or website. 

Google meticulously evaluates footer links, ensuring that websites prioritize users by providing useful or valuable links. So, don’t create these links only for SEO purposes. 

Also Read: What Are Meta Tags in SEO? All Meta Tags Explained

12. Paid Links

Paid links are those for which you pay a third-party website for a do-follow link. According to a survey, around 74% of websites pay to build links, spending an average of $83 for every link. No matter what the numbers say, paid links are considered a black-hat SEO strategy, so Google views them as a violation of search engine policies and can even penalize the site.

They are an old and commonly used types of backlinks in digital marketing that might be against Google algorithm. Despite agreeing that paid links are not good, many businesses and marketers pay for guest posts and editorial links. However, a few quality links from top websites are worth paying. For example, paying for a guest article on a reputable site is acceptable, but you can’t get a link from a private blog. 

Many SEO professionals and marketers ruin their backlink profiles by acquiring numerous paid links from irrelevant sites. So, it’s always better to check the page and domain authority of a site before you build a link.  

13. Badge Backlinks

Badges feature brands and are a sign of appreciation or recognition for industry experts. Getting a badge is a proud moment for any business. Badge backlinks are a unique link-building tactic you earn when another site awards you for your work through a digital emblem or badge, linking it back to your site.

These badges can show certifications, achievements, contributions, or partnerships. Whenever you distribute your badge to a website, it will place it on their page. Since badges are a noticeable element on a site, they drive traffic and clicks, bringing more people to your site. Also, it will help you win the trust of visitors. 

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14. PBN Backlinks

Private Blog Network backlinks come from an unauthentic network of interlinked blogs or websites owned by a single pillar page. 

These links are not used much today as they are completely against Google’s guidelines. However, some sites still use it with the primary goal of increasing their website’s authority. 

PBN backlinks are known to manipulate PageRank. Therefore, it is recommended that these links be avoided. If Google discovers such a link, it can penalize your site or never consider it for search engine results. 

Also Read: Full On-Page SEO Checklist 2024 (With Strategy) 

15. Free Tool Backlinks

When you offer a free tool to anyone in your industry, you can ask them to promote it on their site and add your link. It’s like a recommendation or compliment for your tool. These types of backlinks in off-page SEO can have a great impact on your SEO efforts, spreading the word about your tool and enticing people to try it. 

This free tool must be the basic version of the premium one to bring more prospects. Include a CTA to enable visitors to try it and buy the paid version. 

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Wrapping Up

Backlinks have always been integral to SEO. However, it’s important to prioritize quality backlinks rather than acquiring low-quality and irrelevant links from numerous sites. Craft a meticulous link-building strategy to gain backlinks from top sites without compromising quality. 

Learn link-building skills and other SEO tactics by joining WsCube Tech’s online SEO course designed by industry leaders and experienced marketers. Connect with us now to register for free demo classes. 

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  • Ashima Jain

    Ashima Jain is a Content Editor and Strategist at WsCube Tech and has been in the content marketing industry for 6 years. She is a writer by day and a reader by night. It was actually her love for reading that made her try her hands at writing. She has completed her postgraduation in Economics and Financial Management and has also done diploma courses in Journalism and Digital Marketing. When not working, you can find her in a cafe enjoying a cup of joe and a book.