A new report from SEMrush has confirmed what we already knew – backlinks are still the most important ranking factor for SEO. The report, available from their website, shows that sites that have a large backlink profile from a wide range of sites and (importantly) IP addresses have higher keyword rankings.
The report, entitled ‘Ranking Factors 2,0,’ covered a wide rank of potential inputs, including anchor text, SSL relevance and the always hotly debated, content length. The scientific study demonstrated a direct correlation between the size of a backlink portfolio and the perception of quality.
There were also some fascinating findings that presented a potential word of warning for practitioners and the initiated. Including –
“18% of domains ranking for high-volume keywords don’t have the keyword in the body.” source: SEMrush
This tells us that not only are the days of keyword stacking over but also that Google’s interpretation of content has reached bizarre new levels. In fact, it’s our official opinion that the rise of the machines is upon us. Also, stop using keywords as a tool.
“3% of backlinks contain a keyword in the anchor text.” source: SEMrush
External anchor text seems to be a dinosaur that doesn’t want to become extinct. Old school SEO hackers are still trying to yell and scream at Google in an attempt to achieve higher rankings. Google is paying as much attention to your website as it possibly can, screaming at her (yes, her) isn’t going to make a difference.
You can visit SEMrush for more details and the rest of the findings, including the importance of content that people hang around to read, bounce rates and visitors to the site. Used in its entirety as a tool to determine which ranking factors should be focused on, any SEO professional or website owner will find this report useful, if not confronting.
This site has no affiliation with SEMrush