Back-Links and Website Content. Which is more important?

It is a longstanding Google guideline for websites that, “Content is king”, as I had written in a 3/17/17 post a few days ago. I had an objector who claimed that “no matter how good your content may be, your site will not rank well without good quality backlinks”. So which is the real King? Content or Back-links?

I believe content is still #1 because you will have great difficulty getting other websites to link to yours without very good to excellent content. This means content which is, in Google’s words, “Rich and relevant”.  “Rich” in terms of content that is useful, well organized, engaging, easy to navigate, and read, etc.,  as well as being highly “Relevant” to the keyword or key phrase being searched. 

But how does Google rank this kind of excellence when it uses largely algorithms or mathematical formulas?  That would seem to make it difficult (or impossible) to judge quality pages. They can see “keyword density” and total number of words, see charts and tables, and videos, and still direct searchers to unhelpful websites. How does Google judge quality websites for so many millions of websites? Alone they cannot. 

So, Google lets others “vote” for websites, count those votes, and use them to rank web pages accordingly. These “votes” are “recognized” by the number of other related and quality websites that “link back” to that site. So a backlinks campaign is actually a political campaign to convince other good websites to link back to your site because of its quality and usefulness, relative to a particular search term.

(See also that includes a list of sources for back-links

SEO where “Content is King”

SEO is not just a matter of getting all the technical issues correct; but, much more importantly, building a website with "rich, relevant, content" relative to the topics and keywords being promoted.

I think it was someone at Google who first advised SEO web-developers about SEO where “Content is King”. What he meant was that SEO was not just a matter of getting all the technical issues correct, but, much more importantly, building a website with “Rich, relevant, content” relative to the topics and keywords being promoted.

There may have been a day, even as recent as the late nineties, when getting the Meta tags right could get you on Google’s coveted first page, but those days a long gone. The Search Engines algorithms have greatly advanced in determining the best results (websites) for the search term being used. This has had the profound effects in, not only, increasing the number of actual searchers (by making “search” easy) but also in increasing the competition for “organic positioning” on the SERP’s. (See our SEO Glossary)

And, it’s not only the algorithms that have gotten much more sophisticated but Google has also hired technicians to physically review thousands of their own algorithmic results pages (SERPs) and recommend changes in the rankings. These are then compared not only with their own algorithmic results, but by comparing the results of three or more technicians (for consensus), they are much better able to determine the best results (websites) for the keywords being used.

A question often asked is what makes “Rich, Relevant, Content”? It’s not just using a page with the recommended number of keywords and having the correct “keyword density”. Rich Relevant content is easy to read (font size etc), layout, text Positioning, pictures with captions and alt tags, charts, graphs, videos, live chat. It is also competitive; so look at what your competitors are doing and how they are placing.

It’s a lot like the old adage about “building a better mouse trap”. SEO is never a guarantee for first page organic positioning but everything you do to make your site better will always pay off in making your website a better selling tool and a better online presentation of your business.


Welcome to our Blog!

Welcome to Our Blog

Welcome to our blog which will cover the more technical aspects of SEO, Web Development, Social Media, and On-Line Advertising issues, with an emphasis on supporting the commercial success of our clients using the web to sell and promote their products and services.

Since some of our terminology may be new to some of our users, our website maintains an SEO Glossary (SEO Glossary) and a PPC (Pay Per Click) Glossary.

In the near future we will be adding a glossary for overall Website Development that will cover terminology/issues such as, Website Security, Visitor Tracking Tracking, RWD, CMS platforms, etc. Look for a notice here.

In general, we welcome comments, corrections, additional information including links to other sources. If there are topics you would like to see some discussion on, please let us know.

And again, Welcome to Our Blog! 

Denny McMahon and his wonderdog Nanji

Denny McMahon and his wonderdog Nanji