Here we are in the most important step of your site’s SEO strategy, the analysis and implementation of link acquisition strategy (natural and influenced) for the ranking of your site. It is indeed utopian to think that inbound links could be removed from Google’s algorithm as some pseudo experts claim. Even Yandex who took the step backtracked and reintegrated backlinks into its algorithm after disastrous results.

In my analysis of SEO factors (Google ranking) previously published here, it was evident that the great champion of signals is none other than the link profile:

SEO factors

Even if we see it at 22%, let’s not forget that this is my personal interpretation of Moz, Search Metrics and Netmark analyzes and we remember well that we added a weighting factor: my feeling that the experts SEO did not take into account Google updates in their responses.

Anyway, in this post we will see how to compare your backlink profile versus the competitors and even more importantly how to conduct a backlink analysis in order to detect the risk of Penguin or other penalties to come.

Summary of backlink analysis (free and paid tools)

Before you conduct your link analysis, make sure you have chosen the right competitors. There are three ways to do this:

Manual: you identify your competitors via Google search on your main keywords, but be careful to use an extension like Moz’s for Firefox or Chrome in order to see in the results which are the Domain Authority of these. Often brands with a very strong DA will just drown you take those who are close to you in terms of SEO strategy. You can also run rankings reports. The role of the backlinks is really important there. So now you can easily buy backlinks   and come up with the best options for the same.

Semrush: it is a paid tool but in its free version it will give you an overview of the competitors who are eager for you on your main keywords (provided you have some).

Similar sites: You can also use online tools like similar sites or search in Google with the command: Related.

Now that you have at least 3 competitors to compare your metrics, here is the agenda:

  • Volume and type of backlinks
  • Distribution of backlink quality
  • Analysis of text anchors
  • Contextual analysis of links

General Domain Authority Comparison

Volume and Type of backlinks

Here we mainly analyze the quantity of inbound (external) links and see their general impact on competing domains: PageRank, Moz Rank and Moz Trust. Tool used: Moz Open site Explorer . MozRank is a metric that shows the domain’s worldwide popularity, calculated in a manner similar to Google PageRank, and mozTrust is similar to mozRank, but instead of measuring link popularity, it measures link trust index. It will be necessary to make beautiful graphs which are more explicit. Choose the vertical bars preferably.