Can Backlinks Hurt Your Site?

Backlinks are a key part of SEO. They help spread the word of your service or products, and they effectively work as whole new marketing channels that bring in organic web traffic. 

However, you might have heard some horror stories about backlinks actually damaging websites. 

Unfortunately, that can be true; if you use them improperly. 

Backlinks are necessary SEO tools that can make or break your SEO efforts, but you need to avoid the following mishaps to keep them from completely wrecking your website’s success.

Don’t Allow Low-Quality Backlinks

Have you ever heard of being guilty by association? Well, this is kind of like that.

A backlink is when another website links to your site via an article or some other form of content on their site. This is usually a good thing. When it happens organically, it’s a pretty good sign that you’re appearing as an authority in your niche and you provide good information or services. 

However, it doesn’t help much if the site referencing you is not exactly trustworthy itself. 

If a site is backlinking to you, and it has a ton of poor online practices affecting its rating, or it’s extremely low in the rankings due to horrible design and other major issues, it can have a detrimental effect on your website. 

Imagine you have two neighbours, and a third neighbour is moving across the street. The neighbour on your right has a clean home, smiles, and waves at everyone, and is a pleasure to be around. They tell the new neighbour you're their best friend, and you'll get along with them just fine. 

Your neighbour on the left presents himself horribly, and he’s so drunk he can barely hobble across the street to talk to the neighbours. He tells the new neighbour you’re two peas in a pod before promptly throwing up on their new carpet. That reflects poorly on you. 

You want your backlinks to come from reputable sites, and you want them to be organized in a way that caters to search engine requirements. 

Don’t Overdo it

Believe it or not, Google doesn’t like you paying for things (even tho everyone is doing it) that are supposed to be honest reflections of your site. 

Now, most websites do grease the wheels a bit to get backlinks and establish a presence. It’s necessary in the highly saturated world of the internet. 

However, you do not want to be so painfully obvious about it that Google gets curious about your site’s growing success. You have to keep it realistic. 

If you pay for backlinks, don’t buy 5000 of them in one day. Not only are there bound to be countless bad ones in that group of 5000, but Google isn’t brain dead. It can tell that you’re doing something shady, and it will start taking action against you to create a fair environment for other sites. 

Don’t Worry About it

It can be difficult to avoid these things on your own. However, you don’t have to. I’m here to help. 

I’m Antonie; an SEO specialist and CEO @ AM Marketing SEO. 

I’ve helped companies across the planet, including top-tier US companies, with all of their SEO needs with a tremendous success rate. If you’d like to avoid improper backlinks, or you need to correct past mistakes, book a free 30-minute consultation, and I’ll show you how AM Marketing SEO can help.