We are continuing our series on the 2023 Ranking Factors for Local Search, and we're going to talk about the fourth most important factor in getting higher rankings and that is website links. Links are what some people call backlinks, and it comes in fourth at 11%. It is a little deeper than just backlinks as you can have inbound anchor text as a link. You can also have what is called linking domain authority, which are backlinks from other sites to your site. Linking domain quantity is priority, meaning, you need a fair number of links to your site and out to other sites and within your site.
Putting all the cards on the table, this factor has been declining in importance over the past five reports. It came in at a high of 20% importance in 2015, but that does not mean we should ignore it. It's still fourth at 11%!
An internal link is a link that points to another page on your website. You set up a link going from your product or services page back to your home page or from a blog to a service page or from one blog to another blog. These links are important signals that Google picks up on. You can use descriptive keywords as anchor text to raise the importance of certain keywords that you want to highlight such as the name of a product. You could put an anchor text in a blog, and that will point back to the product service page for that same product. That will raise the profile in Google's eyes of that keyword.
They also help you navigate the website as it can get people from one page to another page of importance. It also helps prioritize and show Google the importance through the structure of content. It also spreads ranking power throughout the website.
We also have what are called external links. You can have external links from your website to another business's website. If you are quoting a study or mentioning a product of another company, you should link back to their site with the hope that they do the same to you. It is also important for ranking influence to have other sites "link back", backlink, to your site. which is what we call a third party endorsement. It is driving home the concept that what other people say about your business, is more important than what you say about your own business, as it is a validating factor within your field. We have discussed previously about becoming an expert in your field, a subject matter expert or an authority. This will help build your authority.
Links come in at number four 11%. They're very important to your digital success.
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