If you’ve been involved in trying to optimize your website for search engines, I’m sure that you will have discovered by now that obtaining numerous, quality back-links to your page is one of the key factors which dictates how your website will rank in the results provided by internet search engines. The top search engines on the internet — the ones that provide the most, and the highest quality, traffic — assess the number of links that point to your website from both authoritative and relevant internet sites, and uses that data to then rank your website accordingly and determine just how high-up in their results pages your site will generally appear.
The reasoning behind doing this is fairly simple: The top search engines have a strong interest in providing their visitors with high-quality search results that lead to high-quality, relevant pages. That’s what the vast majority of their users a searching for. And, if Search-Engine-A doesn’t provide it to them, they’ll abandon it and start using Search-Engine-B instead. So, how does a search engine figure out exactly which sites in its index are high-quality, and which aren’t? One of the primary methods they use, of course, is to look at the number of other sites that are linking to a particular page, and to take into account the quality of those sites themselves. The rationale being that, the higher the quality of the particular page being linked to, the more other website operators are likely to link to it, and the higher the quality of the site linking, the greater the odds that that high-quality site will only link to another site that is also of high quality. People, of course, tend not to link to pointless, useless, garbage websites. They tend to link to websites that are interesting and/or informative, or that carry some other sort of real and perceived value to visitors. If any website is linking to a pointless, garbage website, the odds are good that that website isn’t very good itself. So, getting many, and quality, back-links from relevant and authoritative websites to your website, is absolutely critical — monumentally critical.
If you’re setting out to begin trying to build such links back to your site, or if you have already been doing so, you’re probably very interested in who may already be linking to your site. But, how do you go about discovering exactly who is? If you’re using Google’s Webmaster Tools, there is a space in your admin panel that will provide a list of sites linking to you — but, the information Google provide through this method is sparse, to say the least. It provides you with only a very few — in most cases, very far from all — of the sites that are currently providing links to your site. And, with the ones it does provide, the information is extremely limited. The results give only the top level domain on which your link appears.
If you want to find out who is linking to your site, and you want to discover all of the backlinks that your site currently has that Google may not be telling you about, there are a couple of methods you could employ.
For starters, one of the more powerful Google tricks you could execute is to go to Google’s regular search page, and ask it to return any website that contains the text of your URL, while discarding any page from your own site. To do this, visit Google and type in: “yoursite.com” -site:yoursite.com For more accurate results, leave the quotation marks in place, but also try a search without them if you’d like. Remember to replace the ‘yoursite.com’ with the domain name of your actual site. So, if your actual website were located at: fuzzypinkslippers.com, you’d type in: “fuzzypinkslippers.com” -site:fuzzypinkslippers.com
This will return a listing of all pages in Google’s index which contain your url in the text which appears on that page. It’s not an entirely accurate listing of who, exactly, is backlinking to your site, but the results can often be highly interesting, and certainly much more exhaustive than what is available through Google’s webmaster tools. Browsing through the results this method provides is sure to alert you to a fair number of actual backlinks to your site (if you have them) that Google’s webmaster tools isn’t telling you about.
For a much more comprehensive, specific and detailed option on how to find out who is linking to your site, you could make use of the free Open Site Explorer service offered by MOZ. Limited usage is free — and will still provide you with a lot of good information regarding who is linking to you — but for full, detailed reports you’ll be required to create a subscriber account with them. And, it’s not cheap! Their lowest membership rate, after a 30-day free trial evaluation has run its course, comes at a cost of $99 per month! That being said, however, the information they provide is incredibly exhaustive, detailed and would carry great value for many people actively engaged in extensive SEO practices.
However, if you’d really like to absolutely, and easily, explode the amount of quality backlinks to your website by as much as gaining more than 700 new, high-quality, do-follow links every month — each of them on entirely unique, C-Class domains — then I highly recommend looking into a remarkably powerful and valuable service like Social Monkee. Click here to find out more. There is no easier, nor more powerful way to quickly and effortlessly build huge numbers of high quality backlinks to your site.