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  • Writer's pictureKamran

How to Check the Quality of Backlinks

Can I trust this link? What is a good link? How to analyze a site to find out if it is interesting to get a link from it? These questions you have to ask each time you with the possibility of getting a link, as netlinking has become risky. This is also the case when we practice cleaning links.

Moreover, if the linking is "dangerous", it is because the algorithm of Google gives a huge weight to the links and does not want you to handle it. A good proof of the effectiveness of links, provided you go on eggs ...

The basics of linking

I will not extend 107 years on it, but in your global linking here are some basics to remember:

Vary, vary, vary and still vary the anchors of links : It is likely that the cleat is still down at Google and have multiple links on the same anchor (text link) optimized has probably become the main flag at Google. Kevin Richard endorsed by Sylvain Peyronnet spoke recently about 3% maximum.

Put your keywords before and after your link : give a strong semantic context without necessarily bouncing your anchor link. It is necessarily less efficient, but much less risky.

Use the name of the site to make links to the homepage : Unless the site that makes you the link is exceptional authority (1 case on ...) the links to your homepage will be made on the name of the site. Really limit the optimized anchors to the homepage.

Aim for the quality of the sites that link you : And here we are in the heart of the subject. How to determine the quality of a site or a page?

How to determine the quality of a site to get a link?

Rather than great theories, I will rather talk to you about some tools and reflexes to have.

Tool # 1: Your brain

For example, you can get a link from a blog post in the editorial, it's party time. But if the blogger does this for you, he may do it for others. Start by making sure that half of the blog posts do not contain links to various sites on optimized anchors. If so, it smells pretty bad and you'll be quickly identified as someone who "buys" links.

Find another blog for your link or analyze other criteria (below).

Another tip. Look at some Title tags of the site you are interested in and check that it is not too bad on them.

Tool 2: Majestic SEO (I stay at the free version voluntarily).

Type the URL of the site and eventually the page you are interested in and look at the Trust Flow (TF) and Citation Flow (CF).

The Trust Flow is an indicator of "trust". The Flow quote is a volume indicator ("pagerank"). These two notions are specific to Majestic SEO but these simple figures give some good benchmarks.

A site whose TF is higher than the CF receives a priori trust links is very good sign, you will benefit by obtaining a link from him. Overall, Kévin (still him) advises to do the operation TF / CF * 100 (example: 22/26 * 100 = 84.6).

We can say that from 70% it's not too bad, 100 is very good and above 100 it's very cool!

Of course, the higher the numbers (TF and CF) the better it is as a ratio basis (the site has more Trust and more link juice than a site where the numbers are lower).

Tool # 2: The Link Analyzer (because it's free)

If you have the means, I would rather recommend Majestic SEO or Ahref or SEObserver which I consider more reliable.

The idea here is to go to see if the site that makes you a link has made the pig or not on its own linking. This tool will allow you to search the links of the site to see if its link anchors are highly optimized or not . If so, it may be flagged by Google or one of these days.

Anything that gives an impression that the links of the site are not natural or stuffed must prompt you to be cautious. In the case of this tool, you can filter the links nofollow, because we do not care. Another big advantage of this tool, you can click on the site's referencing pages to see precisely where are its own links.

If you want to be content with a quick analysis of a site's anchor links without spending too much time, you can also use Majestic SEO or Ahrefs in their free versions where indicators show percentages of link anchors ( on the home page).

In this example ( if I did not know the site ), I would go deeper, because the 40% of "Other Link Anchor" could be angry anchors. The good signal is still that more than 50% of the anchors are not made on key phrases, but the name of the site, its URL, or my name.

Tool # 3 The MOZ spam score (new) (free, but very limited in queries).

It is our friend Rand Fishkin who brings us this tool that completes the range of tools MOZ.

The principle is to determine a score for the profile of a site. It's probably pretty close to what Google does. Indicators taken into account include elements such as linking signals:

Very big site with very few inbound links (not very logical)

Low diversity of incoming links (type of site)

Low proportion of links on the name or brand

Big proportion of dofollow links next to nofollow


And signals in the site itself (Onpage):

Many low content pages

Lots of text next to code on pages

Many (too many) external links

Not enough internal links

Many internal optimized anchors

Many external links in sidebar

No page of the site contains mail, address or links to social profiles.

Spammy domain extension (ex: .tk)


For those who want a lot more detail on the calculation methods, I invite you to read Rand's article here (English) and its complement of Friday here .

Basically, these signals can calculate a spam score that can distinguish at a glance if the site concerned is likely to be considered spammy (over-optimized internally and / or linking) by Google.

Concretely, the spam score goes from 0 (zero) to 17 (seventeen).

To have a level indicator, Rand Fishkin gives us the table below. I'm a little less tender than him, because I find that with a spamscore of 4, it already starts to fear when I see the sites that "benefit" from this score. For Rand, you are still in the moderate up to 7 and so to speak dead from 8.

I think this index of 3 is linked to the many outgoing links in comment signatures. I'm waiting for Rand's answer on that. By the way, the more it goes the more I think that one of these days I will all go nofollow, but that's another story.

Attention : MOZ remains an American tool whose base is a little more oriented towards this market. Here is the table that MOZ proposes to know if the score is acceptable or critical.

To conclude

Netlinking remains a very powerful lever to position a site. It goes without saying that it is all the more effective when it is done towards a good content .

Nowadays, the quality of links largely prevails over quantity. In this sense, it is better to fine tune the search for its links to avoid sanctions in the short, medium or long term. These tools will give you indications on the quality of the sites .

It is important, however, to keep one thing in mind, your links must have a very natural profile, so your personal judgment will probably be the best decision tool even if the metrics detailed above validate it. For example, a blog that has just been released can be very promising, but the metrics above will not be great because it does not have enough seniority. Again, use your brain above all else.

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