Although I’m fairly proficient with Google Analytics, I find myself neglecting some of the more important aspects of what Google has to offer in terms of site maintenance, such as keeping tabs on my backlinks. Backlinks, or sites that link to your own site, are extremely important for SEO because the more you have, the more trustworthy search engines find you and, of course, the more traffic you get. This article outlines why you need to know who is liking to you and how to find them (click here to learn how to build your backlinks).
Why You Need to Find Your Backlinks
I recently learned how to find, download, and sort my backlinks, which was great because I found some interesting items. For example, I learned that a few sites are aggregating my reviews by truncating them and linking back to me, which, after I did a bit of digging, I found were driving traffic to my site. Now that I know that, I can send them a thank you email and forge a new connection.
Unfortunately, I also found out that AskerCafe.com is aggregating my content but changing some of the keywords to avoid detection and – and this is a biggie – not linking to the original content. In other words, they are stealing my content and passing it off as their own. I found content from others sites, too, such as The Millions and Guardian Books, so you may want to head over and browse around to see if your own content has been aggregated without attribution or permission (I recommend Googling “Asker.Cafe YourBlogName”). If it weren’t for downloading my backlinks, I never would have known this and you should check your own, too.
How to Find Your Backlinks
Google Analytics is a go-to for most bloggers and site owners but the Google Search Console offers a ton of great information. Below are instructions for how to find, download, and sort your own backlinks.
- Sign into Google Webmaster Tools.
- Select the site you want to view.
- Click the dropdown for Search Traffic.
- Click Links to Your Site.
- Under “Who Links the Most” click More.
- At the top, above the links, click Download this Table and select CSV.
- Open the file and now you can see all of your backlinks!
- Sort your backlinks by Excel column based on what you want to see. I recommend sorting Linked Pages from largest to smallest.
What do Do With Your Backlinks
Most of the backlinks require no action but you will likely find that certain sites link to you a lot. If you’re not sure who that person is then they probably have you listed in their directory of sites they like and display the most recent post. If so, pop over and say hello, comment on a few posts, and build a relationship because they obviously enjoy your content. Also keep an eye out for (and make a list of) sites you’ve never heard of – they may be aggregators and are worth checking out to ensure they are doing it properly. If not, ask them to remove your content because no one should be taking your content without proper attribution and permission!