In the search engine optimization (SEO) industry, it is widely known that content is critical to a successful campaign. While many strategies, including gimmicks and tricks, have allowed some sites to rank higher in a search engine results page temporarily, the only proven long-term tactic has been to develop content that is worth reading. Google, for example, places a primary emphasis on the value of the content of websites where search results from those with rich and valuable information are ranked higher. Nevertheless, outgoing and incoming links are also critical aspects in how well a website will rank within the results page of a search query. The rationale is that if other websites with highly valuable content like another site enough to link to it, such information is most likely relevant and important.

Domain authority

Moz developed a search engine ranking score called Domain Authority (DA). The score is a predictor for how a website will rank in a search engine results page. The score, a number between 1 and 100, is calculated using a logarithmic scale and is a combination of factors that includes the total number of links, the linking root domain, and more. Google has its proprietary algorithm for calculating ranking and, although it does not necessarily use the same factors, the DA score does seem to correlate with the results, thus it’s a good indicator of a page’s ranking. One of the most effective ways of improving the score is to obtain more links to a site. However, these links should be from web pages with a high domain authority that relates to the content on the destination page.

Inbound versus outbound links

Inbound links are those that link from another domain to your site while outgoing links are those from your site to other domains. Of these, inbound links are of greater value. They’re also more difficult to obtain. The reason that these types of links are valuable is that search engines use this to determine that someone else thought that the content was worthy of sharing. Other factors can also play a role in how these types of links can help rank a site. If the source has a high domain authority, such a link will carry weight. Furthermore, the keywords on both sites and the relevance in the topic may also influence the ranking. Some businesses partner up with other companies that can help them obtain such types of links. For example, one of the best and fastest ways to achieve this is to use link building strategies from companies that specialize in such ideas. Instead of using artificial links that will eventually be caught by Google or other search engines, these types of companies use their relationships to look for other reputable organizations with high-quality and relevant content that can be a complement.

Outbound links, although not as important as in the past, can still be of value to companies looking to increase their organic ranking. These, however, should be natural and should be limited to sites with good domain authority. They should be relevant to the topic and add value for the reader. Keep in mind that websites that are of high-quality will link to others that are high-quality as well. Furthermore, these links should use anchor text that also relates with the site’s keywords. Ultimately, although a website’s content will be the main driver in ranking, links do play an important role. Together, these two strategies will make a difference. So, for the best possible results, always think about the information on the page, the keywords, and the links.