5 Types of Backlinks & Their Role in SEO


Backlinks are links to your site from another website. These links are very important for SEO because search engines use the number and quality of backlinks as one of the factors to determine a website’s rank.

Backlinks can have several different types depending on where they originate from. Different types of links have different qualities.

A high-quality backlink originates from a website with high authority. On the other hand, low-quality backlinks originate from low-authority sites.

How Are Backlinks Earned?

Types of Backlinks & Their Role in SEO

An important component of an off-site SEO strategy is the acquisition of backlinks. There’s no doubt that backlinks are one of the most important SEO factors off-site right now. Backlinks are primarily gained through three major methods.

1. Natural Way

A natural link occurs when a website is linked to another without any further action from the website owner.

As a result of the high-quality content you consistently produce, you will be able to naturally build natural links to your website.

2. Manual Way

Link earning activities are the means by which manual links are acquired. One of the easiest ways to gain a manual link is to blog for a relevant website and gain a guest post for the site. When you do this, remember to include a link to your website within the content.

3. Self-created Way

Typically, self-created links are links that are manually added to a forum, blog comment, or online directory by a website administrator. Creating your own links may seem easy to gain backlinks, but you should be cautious.

In some cases, however, tactics tend to be associated with “black hat SEO,” a practice that negatively affects the search engine’s reputation. Links with the “no follow” attribute are often associated with this practice.

Let us take a look at some of the types of backlinks that are useful to SEO.

5 Important Types of Backlinks for SEO

1. Editorial Backlinks

Editorial Backlinks

Editorial backlinks are one of the most valued types of backlinks. They are also not easy to obtain.

When a highly authoritative platform links your site or a piece of content on their site, then that is called an Editorial backlink.

Editorial backlinks provide a lot of ‘link juice’. That’s why they are very valuable. To obtain these links you can only do one thing and that is to make very high-quality content.

High-quality content is very much likely to be shared by others. If people feel that your content is something of an authority on a subject then they will share it more.

2. Guest Blogging Backlinks


Guest blogging is a white hat SEO technique in which you reach out to the owner of a blog or a magazine in your niche and ask them to host a blog post or article written by you.

You can add a link to your website in that article and when the article goes live, you will have a backlink to your site from the guest blog site.

Guest blogging is quite easy to do. Many webmasters are open to guest posts on their sites. There are even tools on the net that can tell you about the guest post sites in your niche along with their contact information and domain authority.

3. Press Release Link

Press Release

News outlets have long moved on from just print media and have now secured an online presence and content channels.

They are typically high authority websites because they already have a reputation and their loyal readership base is strong.

Reaching out to these news outlets and inquiring if they could give you some backlinks is a viable option.

Usually, your local outlets will be willing to give you a backlink.  You can write an informative article about some new technology or method that has emerged in your niche and get a backlink in return.

4. Acknowledgment Link

This is the type of backlink you obtain when your brand is involved in some industry event. The involvement could be due to sponsorship or there might some representation of your brand, or your brand might have made a sizeable donation.

The organizers of the event then acknowledge your brand by providing you with a backlink.

Look for good opportunities to get acknowledgment backlinks and increase the authority of your site.

Some tips for getting acknowledgment links are:

  • Choose a brand/website in your niche that has a good presence.
  • Choose a site that has an acknowledgment page set up.

These types of sites will give you a link easier than most.

5. Comment Links

Comment Links

Comment links are backlinks that you get when people share your website or your content in the comments section of another site.

You can make comment links yourself as well, by commenting on other sites and leaving a link to your website in the comment.

This method is supposed to be done in moderation. If you excessively comment and leave links to your site on other websites, people can get annoyed.

Additionally, if you leave comments on low-authority sites, that can backfire on you and cause your website’s authority to worsen.

You can get the most out of comment links if you only leave some good comments on a few high-authority sites. That way, the links will help the SEO of your site.

4 Advantages of Backlinks

1. Improves organic ranking

Your website will rank higher in the SERPs once search engines begin to view it as an authority.

Remember that Google emphasizes sites that users visit frequently and that deal with topics they usually search for. Accordingly, if you have multiple high-quality backlinks, Google will consider your website a credible and useful source of content regarding that particular topic.

2. Promotes brand awareness

Linking to your website indicates that websites believe their readers will benefit from what you have to offer. Backlinks from reputable websites also mean that readers will be able to recommend your site to their readers, which leads to fascinated visitors.

Google takes into account how much time your visitors spend on your website when ranking your website. They will read more content and spend more time on your website this way.

3. Increases referral traffic

Furthermore, backlinks play an important role in increasing referral traffic. Google Analytics tracks a referral visit to your website if a visitor arrives at your website via a backlink. Referral traffic is more targeted and relevant than other types of traffic and results in fewer bounce rates.

4. Ensures your website is positioned as an authoritative source

If you link out to more websites, you position your business as an authority in a particular field, service, or subject. Backlinks are one of the factors Google uses to figure out what your website consists of.

Therefore, Google will have an easier time understanding more about your business the more backlinks you obtain.

Why Quality of Backlinks is Important?

Search engines not only consider the number of backlinks to a site, but they also consider their quality.

There is a black hat SEO technique in which fake websites (that were made only to supply links) are used to generate a lot of backlinks for a legitimate website.

Best Quality Backlinks

Search engines can detect this suspicious behavior and they can penalize the legitimate website for having a lot of low-quality links.

Hence, it is of paramount importance that you check the authority of the sites you want a backlink from. The rule is simple, the higher the authority, the higher the quality of the backlinks.

You can easily check the authority of a website by using a tool commonly called DA checker or ‘domain authority’ checker.


And there you have it: the reason why backlinks are important for SEO. Search engines use the number and quality of backlinks as a ranking factor. With more good quality backlinks your website will rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs).

We also looked at several types of backlinks that you can obtain. We discussed what editorial backlinks are and how they are very valuable. To get them, you have to write original, high-quality content that others would feel the need to share.

We saw that guest posting was an efficient and ethical way of obtaining high-quality backlinks.

Asking your local news outlet to feature your article and give you a link was another way to get a high-quality backlink.

Sponsoring an event and being a representative speaker can also get you “acknowledgment” backlinks as a sign of appreciation.

Comment links require you to tread carefully and only write a few comments on high authority sites to not risk getting low-quality links.

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Author: Lucy Heatherton