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How to Get Backlinks

Posted By Darren Rowse 25th of March 2007 Search Engine Optimization 0 Comments

Reader QuestionsGuruMonetizer asks – can you describe how did you get backlinks for problogger over the time?

Thanks for the question GuruMonetizer. There’s no real secret to this one – I simply went about my business of blogging in a way that I felt would provide the most useful information and community for those exploring my topic – making money online via blogging.

Some of the things I’ve not done (or at least not done for quite a few years) include:

  • link exchanges
  • buying links (I’ve run a couple of small AdWords and BlogAds campaigns but no text links)
  • begging for blogroll links

I think if someone did some analysis on the type of links that are pointing at ProBlogger that they’d find that the majority of them are the result of someone commenting upon, disagreeing with or recommending something that I’ve written.

What type of posts have brought in the most incoming links?

I’d be guessing here – but I think there’d be a few:

  • Scoops – breaking big news is probably the best way to get incoming links because the majority of bloggers who report on the news will also include a link to you as it’s source. Some blogs have perfected the scoop post to the point that they’ve really launched themselves into the A-list as a result of them.
  • How To Posts – I always find that these posts generate a lot of incoming links. Once you help one person work out how to do something – they often like to keep a record of it for themselves but also to pass it on.
  • Opinion Pieces – arguing a point strongly is great for getting people to comment and link up to your posts as you generally find that two camps rise up as a result – firstly those who agree with you and want to write about why – and secondly those who disagree with you and want to state their case.
  • Group Projects – while I don’t force participants to link back to my blog I do ask them to consider it. Even if only 50% do this can result in a hundred or more backlinks per project.
  • Humor Posts – one of the frustrating things of having a serious blog is that quite often the heavier and serious posts (that you put hours and hours into writing) get ignored and it can be the lighter and humorous ones that you post off the cuff without thinking about them that get all the attention.

These are the type of posts that seem to generate links here on ProBlogger. On other blogs that I own there are similarities but I’ve found that each blog seems to have it’s own type of post that works best.

Lastly – Keep in mind that links are not everything. While they definitely help, concentrate on producing great content and keeping a holistic perspective and you’ll find the links will come in time.

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  1. I agree on this. I think people who want to achieve success with minimal harwork looks for shortcuts and looking for superficial backlinks is one of this.

  2. I have a humor blog. I add those blogs to my blogroll which I like.These are mostly related to fun and humor.
    Is it wrong to request somebody to add your blog to his blogroll if you are adding up his blog in your blogroll?

  3. Having an original idea to publish on internet in my view is the most important part of getting noticed, The content that you put into your website or blog account for success, originality especially in todays internet world is a must!

  4. I’m finding that backlinks aren’t everything. They’re important, sure! Content, keywords, valid source code and then a few quality organic links from similar sites seems to be the required combination to acheive decent rankings on the major search engines.. Great article, short & to the point.

  5. This is the kind of post and article that will always get you pleny of response. The whole key to backlinks are relevancy. It really does not help as much to have a lot of links from irrelevant sites. Thanks a ton for this article.

  6. You’ll only get backlinks if the content is “useful”

  7. Very nice post. The last time I used to push a website link exchanges were the way to go. It seems like now you have to just have good content and exposure to get back links. I find it hard because I’m trying to get back links for exposure. The one thing that reading problogger has shown me is that I need to have more content that is longer and more useful. My site is full of a few authors who post about what ever. I think this is why it’s taking so long to get off the ground. Thanks to this post I think I’ll have a better shot at getting it off the ground. Thanks Darren.

  8. Great advice. I have been trying to gather backlinks for my site for months now and still don’t have many. I have posted in forums adding the site to my signature. I have commented on Blogs and have paid for adwords links. Still not really moving up the SERPS though.

  9. I doubt whether commenting on the sites will improve the PR . I was doing this for some 2 months, I didnt find any improvement in that.

  10. I’ve been trying to get back links for a while, but very few people want to link to my kind of website. It is hard to look at and hard to think about. But those that do link to me generally have a good reason.

  11. I’m so tired of people suggesting that if you build great content, people will somehow find it and link to it. This is ridiculous and you would have to be an idiot to believe this.

    First of all, how would people even find your “great content” if you’re on page 50. Because no matter how great your content is, and no matter how much on page SEO you do, you’ll never get closer than page 50 without back links (unless you’re aiming for number one for a keyword or phrase that gets searched less than 100 times a month).

    Now even if a few people do find your site, what makes you think that these people have their own websites? Most Internet users do not have their own websites, and even if they do, they probably do not know enough html to properly add a link in their own code. They especially wouldn’t know that they are supposed to use your “keywords” in the anchor text (many webmasters don’t even know to do this).

    Now, lets pretend that a few knowledgeable webmasters do find your site and really enjoy the content. This does not mean they are going to go through the trouble of creating a link on their site to yours. This takes time, effort and energy. Why would they do this unless they have some incentive (but if you give them incentive, doesn’t that undermine its organic nature)?

    Nevertheless, if you do everything right, eventually people will link to your site. This is true. However, it will likely take you about 2 years to acquire enough relevant, high PR back links with proper keyword anchor text to move you up just one point in the PR scale. That will possibly move you to page 49 in the search results. Congratulations, only a few dozen more years to go.

    Come on people: get real. If you want high quality, relevant back links that will significantly improve your SERPS for the keywords and phrases your trying to rank for, then you’re going to have to work for it. These are the plain facts.

  12. Good post but to the above most recent comment, great content is the key. By producing good content that gets index reasonably often you make it into the search engines naturally. And the are always tweaking to find original content. Yes you still have to do search engine submissions, sitemaps and by SEO aware. But it is the content that rises up.

    I have a project at http://www.newyorkit.com that finally got started after being parked for some time. In just a few days a couple of articles have seen traffic in the hundreds. It is not tens of thousands, but it is a start. If I can get one article a week to bring in several hundred viewers who actually read the content, I will get better returns from their viewing multiple pages, time on page, and returning again on their own.

    If I have to pay for every person that shows up, it would not be worth it to me.

  13. I agree on this. This is the kind of post and article that will always get you pleny of response. The whole key to backlinks are relevancy. It really does not help as much to have a lot of links from irrelevant sites. Thanks a ton for this article.

  14. Is there some truth that links are related to PR from Google???

  15. I read this post after 11/2 year after you posted this . But this looks fresh for me , lol .

  16. is it true though you need thousands of back links to make your page ranking even relevant? thats what my SEO consultant is telling….

  17. Excellent post. I spend a considerable amount of time to build backlinks for my sites.

  18. I see nothing wrong with buying text links. I do it. However, I make sure that the website that I am purchasing a link on does not say “sponsored links,” “advertisers,” or “sponsers.” They must say “sites we recommend” or “related links” or just nothing at all (i.e. just list the links).

  19. This is a very good suggestions. I was actually thinking of exploring link exchange programs. But, it may affect page ranks probably.

    What you have done is neat, thanks for sharing.


  20. Very exellent guide but still its not the full guide to the BACKLINKS which i have thought and yeah you made this thing very clear that Links are not everything..Thats good for those who just concentrate on them for their site value.

    anyways nice post.!!!

  21. Good article. Deserves to be top of google results for “How to get backlinks” and I’m glad Google showed it too me rather than some blackhat “SEO-guru guide for only $59.97 per month” (read: linkfarm-scam).

    Now if only I was adding content to my target page it might be worthy of backlinks. :)

  22. Get backlinks is a hard work but if you get 50 or 100 a day you soon reach a big numbers.

  23. that’s rite links are not every thing you also need to optimize the website

  24. I’m just starting SEO for my sites and I will take on board these points.

  25. Great post about links. We all are trying to get new links each and every day. It is sometime hard to find a good place to post for links.

  26. Great information. I have spent a few days trying to get backlinks. Think i am going to concentrate on my posts now

  27. Thank you for the infomation and everyone that as commented. i will be trying to get some back links by tonight!


  28. Really good info I’ll be using it to try and get some backlinks

  29. I agree. I am having trouble getting backlinks for my new industrial search directory website. Any additional pointers would be great. Thanks for all of your help!


  30. I’ve been struggling with how to get back links for a while. I’m not blogging yet (although I plan to). It’s very competitive in my industry – for good reason. Right now, good ol’ fashioned word of mouth is driving my business.

  31. my believe is that if you write good article the rest will come with time

  32. Building back links can be quite frustrating. As many posts have suggested, it really is a great idea to focus on content rather than links – visitors will come!

  33. I think you should concentrate on quality content for the few 2 to 3 months. Then slowly start working on the back links.
    Some blogs are lucky and get loads of back links anyway without doing any work expect of course writing excellent content.
    Fantastic and very informative post!

  34. Great tips, another best way to get back links to submit your site to social bookmarking sites like http://www.digg.com, http://www.v0v.com and reddit.com These will drive great amounts of traffic along with providing back links

  35. Great article. I’ve found that the short, not so serious articles always get the most comments on my blogs. I think it’s important to keep articles easy to read and not too long or else readers will just leavve. Everyone on the net wants to learn quickly, or else they would read a book.

  36. Thanks for the ideas, I really need a lot of backlinks because my keywords are quite competitive!

  37. Another good way to get a link is to make a good, informative video and post it on you tube, then have your link in the description. Not sure if the link is a dofollow, but you can get a substantial amount of visitors from youtube, works for me! thats a tip! now go use it!

  38. I agree on this. This is the kind of post and article that will always get you pleny of response. The whole key to backlinks are relevancy. It really does not help as much to have a lot of links from irrelevant sites. Thanks a ton for this article.

  39. good info.Focussing on content is the key.Getting links from relevant sites is what makes google happy.Getting backlinks is like getting more votes and more word of mouth marketing,it is better in online world.

  40. I agree, Content has to be the major key to getting people interested. I’m new to all this back link stuff so I’m trying to learn more as I go and I like what people are saying about backlinks and ways to get better PR.

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