8 Ways to Detect Bad Backlinks for SEO

Summit Ghimire December 7, 2021 - 4 minutes to read

When it comes to SEO, one of the most important things you can do is keep an eye on your backlinks. You need to ensure that they are high quality and relevant to get the most out of them. That being said, there are several ways to detect bad backlinks for SEO, and here are some of them.

  1. Is the website relevant? The first thing you should check when evaluating backlinks is to see if the website is offering a backlink relevant to your industry. After its most recent updates, Google has started assessing sites offering the backlink as well as the website it is linking it to. If there is no correlation between the two websites, the backlink will amount to nothing. Make sure you know that the website offering the backlink is highly relevant to your business and industry.
  2. Does the site link to unrelated content? It’s not just the website that Google checks when evaluating backlinks. The second thing you need to consider is if the website is linking to completely unrelated content. For example, how would you react if this blog had a backlink for a coffee machine or a coffee blog? Completely unnecessary? That’s also how Google sees it. And if the website has a large number of backlinks to entirely unrelated content, it is treated as a link farm and blacklisted.
  3. Is the site full of uncurated content? The primary purpose of any piece of content is to either solve a problem or deliver a certain value. Such content is considered to be high-quality curated content. It is essential that any website offering backlinks doesn’t accept any type of content just because it is relevant. Backlinks offered by highly curated content written by relevant industry experts are considered high quality by Google. This is the primary reason why editorial backlinks are in high demand in the SEO space.
  4. Is the Directory Stuffed With Links That Don’t Add Value? When evaluating an online directory, it is essential to see what information is present in the directory other than backlinks. The primary purpose of an online directory is to give information about relevant businesses. This includes name, location, address, phone numbers, working hours, and website links. But if an online directory offers no other information other than backlinks to a website, it is better not to list your business in the directory at all. These directories are seen as link farms, and backlinks from these directories have little to no effect on your push for the number one spot on search rankings.
  5. Is the site trying to sell links? As far as Google is concerned, buying and selling links is malpractice. And while some SEO professionals have a different opinion on that, you should avoid buying links. The goal here is to avoid falling into the trap of low-quality websites that sell you backlinks to entirely irrelevant websites. If a website has a clear advertisement or indication that you can buy links from them, it is better to avoid those websites and disavow any backlinks you have from them.
  6. Are there signs of life? A well-curated blog that offers value to its customers is always at the center of attention. People are always searching for new ways to solve a problem, and content that delivers it will always be in the talk. Look for comments and user interactions with the blog. Usually, it is safe to obtain backlinks from blogs that have a high degree of user interaction. This includes comments, guest posts, reviews, and share posts. Any indication that there is an active community supporting and engaging with the website is a good sign.
  7. Does the site look well-maintained? Any business that is serious about increasing its organic rankings will have an excellent-looking website that is aesthetically pleasing and easy to use. Since website design is an integral part of SEO, any business that invests in SEO is bound to have well-structured websites that are easy to navigate. Obtaining backlinks from such websites is usually a good idea. On the other hand, getting backlinks from websites that have not been updated for years and are created solely to give backlinks is far from ideal. In the long run, Google does not scan websites that have not been updated for several years.
  8. Have I seen this before? Websites that copy or republish content are not doing much to add value to the industry. And it is in your best interest to stay away from such websites. As far as Google is concerned, content has to add value to the industry, and copied content doesn’t do that. If you feel that you have seen the content somewhere else, it might be best to stay away from that website.

It’s not just about finding high-quality websites or directories offering relevant links but also making sure they add value to the industry and are well-maintained by their owners. You need to stay away from low-quality content farms, outdated websites with no original content, and any other signs that indicate a lack of commitment toward SEO. If you want Google to rank your site higher than others, make sure all the links coming into your website have a clear purpose behind them and add real value to the users while maintaining relevance among various topics covered.