Exploring the Three Types of Backlinks: A Simple Overview12 min read

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Backlinks are digital pathways to your website. They come in three types, each with unique benefits. Understanding these types can boost your website’s visibility and credibility. Let’s explore the three types to navigate online marketing better:

1.–Natural Backlinks–:

  • Naturally placed by other websites without any involvement from your end.

2.–Manual Backlinks–:

  • Acquired through outreach or self-submissions to online directories.

3.–Self-Created Backlinks–:

  • Placed by you on social media profiles, forums, or comments sections.

By recognizing and utilizing these backlink types, you can enhance your online presence effectively.

Understanding Backlinks

What are backlinks?

Backlinks are links from one website to another.

They are important for SEO because search engines like Google use them to measure a website’s relevance and authority.

There are three main types of backlinks:

  • Natural
  • Manual
  • Pillow links

Natural backlinks are earned through high-quality content and are valued by search engines.

Manual backlinks are obtained through strategies like guest posts and reaching out to webmasters.

However, pillow links are low-quality links that can harm a website’s SEO value.

Focusing on building a strong link profile with authoritative and relevant websites is essential to increase a website’s authority.

Avoiding link schemes and maintaining a natural backlink profile is crucial for SEO success.

Valuable types of backlinks include:

  • Editorial backlinks
  • Authority links
  • Contextual links

These types provide high-quality content and relevant keywords, leading to improved search engine rankings and increased organic search traffic.

Why are backlinks important for SEO?

Backlinks are important for SEO. They help improve a website’s search engine performance.

There are three main types of backlinks:

  • Pillow links
  • Guest posts
  • Authority links

Pillow links support a website’s link profile. Guest posts involve creating content for other sites to earn backlinks. Authority links come from highly reputable websites and have more SEO value.

By focusing on quality backlinks from authoritative sites through methods like guest blogging, websites can increase their authority and visibility in search results.

Backlinks also help drive referral traffic, improve organic search rankings, and enhance a website’s digital footprint for better SEO performance.

What are the Three Types of Backlinks?

Editorial Backlinks

Editorial backlinks are links obtained naturally from high-quality and authoritative websites. These backlinks are important for SEO because they provide valuable link equity and authority, helping websites rank higher in search engine results.

To get editorial backlinks, you need to create high-quality content that other webmasters, bloggers, or journalists find valuable and link to. Unlike other types of backlinks, editorial backlinks are not acquired through direct outreach or link schemes. They are earned by offering quality content that resonates with webmasters and editors.

This organic approach is preferred by search engines because it is more natural. Editorial backlinks, especially from reputable sources, can significantly enhance a website’s authority and improve its backlink profile. This can result in higher search engine rankings and increased organic traffic.

Definition and Importance

Backlinks are links from one website to another. They are important for SEO because they show search engines how relevant and authoritative a website is.

There are different types of backlinks, such as natural backlinks, guest posts, and authority links. Understanding these types is crucial for building a strong link profile that makes a website more credible.

However, link schemes, private blog networks, and low-quality forum backlinks can harm SEO efforts by reducing a website’s authority and credibility in the eyes of search engines.

To improve a website’s SEO value and visibility in organic searches, it’s important to focus on getting high-quality backlinks. Methods like guest blogging, editorial backlinks, and niche edits can help achieve this goal.

By avoiding link schemes and emphasizing quality content and manual outreach, website owners can create a solid backlink profile. This profile can drive referral traffic and improve rankings on search engine results pages (SERPs).

How to Get Editorial Backlinks

When aiming to get editorial backlinks, try these strategies:

  • Guest blog on authority sites in your niche. Share valuable content for readers.
  • Create top-notch content that naturally earns backlinks from other sites.
  • Connect with webmasters, bloggers, and partners for manual outreach.
  • Collaborate with influencers to secure editorial backlinks.
  • Focus on making relevant, informative, and engaging content.
  • Engage with the online community to boost chances of obtaining valuable editorial backlinks.

Guest Blogging Backlinks

Guest blogging backlinks are important for SEO. They help with a diverse backlink profile.

Getting good backlinks from top sites through guest posts can boost link equity and search rankings.

To get these backlinks, focus on creating quality content relevant to the target audience.

Include contextual links with relevant keywords.

Reaching out to webmasters, business profiles, and digital PR efforts can also help.

Avoid link schemes like PBN links and pillow links to keep the link profile strong.

Provide valuable content to attract readers and improve online presence.

Definition and Importance

Backlinks are links from one website to another. They are important for SEO success.

They help search engines understand a website’s relevance and authority. This, in turn, improves its ranking in search engine results.

There are different types of backlinks:

  • Editorial backlinks come from high-quality content on authority sites.
  • Guest blogging involves creating relevant content for other websites in exchange for a link.
  • Relationship-based links are formed through partnerships with other businesses, clients, or partners.

Best practices for anchor text:

  • Use relevant keywords
  • Wisely utilize followed links on niche-relevant pages to strengthen SEO value.

Businesses can improve their backlink profile by focusing on quality content and natural backlinks. This helps attract organic search traffic, increasing website visibility and driving more referral traffic.

How to Acquire Guest Blogging Backlinks

One effective way to acquire guest blogging backlinks is through manual outreach to relevant websites in your niche.

By reaching out to webmasters and offering to write high-quality content for their site in exchange for a backlink, you can build a strong link profile that boosts your website’s authority in the eyes of search engines.

Another strategy is to focus on creating valuable and relevant content that naturally attracts backlinks from other websites.

By publishing informative articles or blog posts on your own site, you increase the likelihood of others linking to your content.

Additionally, collaborating with partners, clients, or industry influencers to create guest posts can also lead to valuable backlinks.

By creating engaging and informative content that adds value to the target website, you can earn quality backlinks that enhance your SEO efforts.

Relationship-Based Backlinks

Building relationship-based backlinks involves forming connections with other websites. These websites can be clients, partners, or industry blogs. These connections help generate valuable links to one’s own website.

By cultivating strong relationships, website owners can secure high-quality backlinks. These backlinks boost their link profile and authority. This authority is recognized by search engines like Google.

Strategies like guest blogging, manual outreach, and creating quality content can earn authoritative links. These links come from relevant sites and offer significant SEO value.

These authoritative links are also known as authority links. They can come from sources like press releases, niche edits, or resource pages. This process increases visibility in the SERPs.

Focusing on quality relationships and valuable content helps businesses get natural backlinks. These backlinks drive referral traffic and enhance their digital footprint. This, in turn, leads to organic search success.

Definition and Importance

Backlinks are links from other websites that direct users back to a specific website.

They signal to search engines the relevance and authority of a website.

Editorial backlinks, like guest posts or content mentions on authoritative sites, help build a strong link profile.

They increase a site’s authority in search engine results.

Guest blogging backlinks allow for exposure to a wider audience.

They can attract more referral traffic.

Relationship-based backlinks, like those from partners, clients, or business profiles, add credibility and trustworthiness to a site.

On the other hand, link schemes and low-quality forum backlinks can harm a website’s reputation.

They can lead to penalties from search engines.

It is important to focus on obtaining natural backlinks from high-quality content and websites.

This helps improve SEO value and organic search rankings.

Building Relationship-Based Backlinks

Building relationship-based backlinks is essential for improving SEO. This can be achieved through strategies like guest blogging, manual outreach, and partnerships. By creating valuable content and engaging with other websites, businesses can obtain quality backlinks organically.

Businesses can benefit long-term from relationship-based backlinks. These links generate referral traffic, boost organic search rankings, and enhance a website’s overall SEO value. Unlike link schemes, relationship-based backlinks are seen as high-quality by search engines. They come from authority sites, offering more value and relevance to the website’s content.

Avoid These Types of Backlinks

Link Schemes

Link schemes are deceitful practices that manipulate search engines by creating fake links to a website. It’s best to avoid them as search engines like Google punish sites that do this.

Some common types of link schemes include:

  • Buying or selling links to boost rankings.
  • Creating “pillow links” between clients and partners.
  • Spamming blog comments with irrelevant links.

These schemes can harm a website’s link profile and authority, making it less relevant in search results. Instead, focusing on natural backlinks from high-quality content like guest posts or press releases can enhance a site’s SEO value.

Building relationships with webmasters for editorial backlinks or resource pages can also drive organic search traffic. Prioritizing value and quality content over shortcuts helps businesses establish a strong online presence and improve their search engine rankings.

Private Blog Networks

A Private Blog Network (PBN) is a network of websites. These sites are all owned by one person or a group working together. The main goal is to create backlinks to a single main website.

Using a PBN is a type of black hat SEO. It involves making low-quality websites. The purpose is to manipulate search engine rankings.

When thinking about using PBN links, webmasters need to be careful. Search engines may penalize websites for having these links. This happens because PBN links lack relevance and authority.

To spot a website involved in a PBN, check for common signs. These include lots of links between sites, similar content on different sites, and using keyword-rich anchor texts.

It’s important to focus on creating good backlinks through legitimate ways. Examples include guest blogging, content marketing, and reaching out to others manually. This helps avoid the risks linked to using PBN links, like harming a website’s SEO value and reputation.

Automated Links

Automated links are backlinks generated without manual intervention. These links can impact SEO by boosting a site’s link profile artificially. This can lead to penalties from search engines.

Using automated links in a backlink strategy can risk being flagged for engaging in a link scheme. This may cause a drop in search engine rankings and organic traffic.

To build a strong backlink profile, focus on high-quality backlinks. Strategies like guest posting, contextual links, and niche edits can help. Prioritize manual outreach to get quality backlinks from authority sites.

By avoiding automated links and opting for manual outreach, businesses can improve their SEO value. This approach helps maintain a solid digital presence for better organic search visibility.

Low-Quality Forum Backlinks

Low-quality forum backlinks are backlinks that lack relevance to a website’s content. They are often obtained through link schemes or spammy practices like blog comments. These links do not add value and are considered “pillow links” with no SEO benefit.

Having many low-quality forum backlinks can harm a website’s SEO. Search engines prefer high-quality content and backlinks from authoritative sources. Too many low-quality backlinks can make a website seem untrustworthy and lower its rankings.

On the other hand, high-quality backlinks from reputable sources like guest posts can greatly benefit SEO. These backlinks offer valuable link equity and can increase referral traffic and organic search visibility. Building quality backlinks is vital for a successful SEO strategy.

Best Practices for Anchor Text and Niche-Relevant Pages

Utilizing Followed Links

Backlinks are crucial in SEO.

Businesses can boost their online presence by using followed links well. This means including high-quality backlinks from authority sites like through guest posts or contextual links.

By doing this, businesses can make their website more relevant to search engines. It’s important to avoid link schemes and focus on natural backlinks for a good backlink profile.

When choosing anchor text for links, use keywords that matter to improve visibility in search results.

Following best practices like manual outreach for quality backlinks helps in gaining SEO value and attracting organic traffic.

Creating great content is key.

It will attract clients and partners, benefiting the business’s digital presence.

Over to you

Backlinks come in three types: natural, manual, and self-created.

  • Natural backlinks are earned effortlessly.
  • Manual backlinks come from outreach or networking.
  • Self-created backlinks are made by the website owner.

All these backlinks help improve a website’s search engine optimization.


What are the three types of backlinks?

The three types of backlinks are natural backlinks, manual backlinks, and self-created backlinks. Natural backlinks come from other websites organically, manual backlinks are obtained through outreach efforts, and self-created backlinks are placed by the website owner themselves.

What is a natural backlink?

A natural backlink is a link to your website that is voluntarily placed by another website owner without any payment or prompting. Examples include links from reputable industry blogs, news articles, or educational websites.

How do you acquire editorial backlinks?

You can acquire editorial backlinks by creating high-quality content that is useful and relevant to your industry. Reach out to influencers, bloggers, and journalists to share your content and ask for backlinks. Building relationships with industry experts can also help you secure editorial backlinks.

Can you explain the concept of self-created backlinks?

Self-created backlinks refer to links that you generate by submitting your website to directories, forums, or social media platforms. For example, submitting your website to online directories like Yellow Pages or creating a post on a relevant forum with a link back to your site.

Why is it important to understand the different types of backlinks?

Understanding the different types of backlinks is important for building a diverse and high-quality backlink profile, which can improve website rankings and establish credibility with search engines. For example, knowing the difference between dofollow and nofollow backlinks helps in prioritizing link-building strategies.