Incoming links to your website is still Google’s biggest ranking factor, especially in more competitive industries. This part of Google’s algorithm is almost like a voting system… The more votes you have, the more popular you are portrayed. However, all votes are not considered equal – some have considerably more weight than others. For example, a link from a brand new website would not have the same power or trust as say BBC.com or CNN.com.
When Google assesses the links that are pointing to your site, it will analyse the URL and content of the ‘satellite site’. First hand it is looking for relevance. If this site in the same industry or niche as your own then the link will carry more value. The algorithm will also assess the trust of that site; how long has it been around, is it a popular site, what are the strength of the links going into that site itself. Google has its own metrics for measuring power and trust of sites which it keeps close to its chest. We can only use tools to try to emulate them. Ahreffs.com is a link analysis tool that is fairly comprehensive and one which we use frequently within our agency. This tool will show you the links coming into your site, the metrics of those ‘satellite sites’ and also the anchor text.
Anchor text is simply what is written when you click on a link to another site. E.g. if I write an article and add a link back to my site that reads “Smart Spider SEO”, then that is my anchor text. The goal is to have as many links from as many different sources as possible, large sites, small sites, directories, social media sites and blogs. Obviously the more from higher quality sources the better, but these are not always easy to acquire. The more relevant the websites that link to yours and the more relevant the anchor text, the more chance you have of ranking higher.