In search engine optimization (SEO), the importance of links pointing to your web pages cannot be underplayed. In fact, most SEO efforts are directed at acquiring links from quality websites that are themselves well ranked. Search engines presume that the links have been acquired naturally and honestly. However, truth is otherwise.
Getting Links by Unnatural Means is Dangerous
It is nowadays customary to acquire links by making deals with blogs and websites that are well ranked and respected. Acquiring links this way is fraught with dangers, but there is little else that can be done for back links. The most fearful of dangers is the links disappearing after a few months of its inception.
Getting links, first of all, is an expensive affair. You will have to hire writers and content creators, and then contact blog owners to carry your articles and content. And you will have to make a deal with them. If the content is good enough you will be granted privileges, and the little solace is the link you can provide at the end of the article to your website.
The more back links your web pages have, the better it is for your website. In practice, the chances of links getting removed are very real. Couple links lost this way may not make much of a difference to your website’s search engine ranking, but, when too many links snap at the same time, search engines will look at the whole episode suspiciously.
Search engines might even presume that you have all along acquired back links through nefarious means. It can be very devastating to your website, and the first casualty is your rank in the search engine results. It is neigh impossible to resurrect and put everything back on rails.
The Importance of Monitoring Back Links
It is therefore important to be on the guard at all times and mend broken links before search engines figure it out. If you have a deal with the blog owners, you will have to contact them immediately and ask for an explanation and set matters right. When your website is small and has fewer links this procedure may work, but often, you will have to deal with a different scenario in which you might be back linked from too many blogs or websites.
It is also important to analyze how the back links were lost – it could have happened accidentally in which case only the link will be missing, or it is possible that the blog owner removed your article or content entirely. Still other possibilities are that the blog owner has included a no-follow or affiliate tracking, both of which too can break back links.
Why Use Back Link Monitoring Tools?
Monitoring back links is a monotonous, expensive and a time consuming job. The usual way to do it is by visiting each web page that has a back links to your pages and verifying that they are in working order. However, there is a limit to what you can accomplish manually. A better way to accomplish this task is by automating the whole process by using software designed exclusively for this, or by subscribing to a web based service with this ability.
Some Commonly Used Monitoring Tools
Monitoring tools will be able to keep track of your website’s back links on a regular basis – daily, weekly or monthly, and send you an alert, and do more for you. Here are some tools you can try.
Majestic SEO reputedly has one of the largest link intelligence databases in the internet. It is a web based service and therefore you don’t have to download or install anything in your computer. Majestic SEO’s Bulk Backlink Checker can check up to 400 URL through the paste URL feature, and up to 100,000 URLs in file upload check mode. There are different subscription levels to choose. It is ideal for making a quick check.
LinkAssistant is software and runs on your computer, and this gives you both freedom and flexibility in how you use it. In fact the software goes far beyond your expectations of a link reporter by helping you to find link partners, generate an in-house directory, design a link directory to your specific needs, help you upload your directory to your website, and even help you in establishing 1, 3 and 4-way links. It also helps you to monitor your website’s link popularity.
Linkody is ideal for those who want their websites backlinks monitored around the clock, and is web based. To use Linkody you need to subscribe to their services. Reports are emailed and you can see who is linking in or has linked out. When your website gets a new link you will be notified instantly. Linkody can help you identify dishonest link partners who snap links that you traded with them. Linkody also has other SEO features.