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5 Main Factors to Look At When Doing A Backlink Analysis

There are a lot of questions regarding how Google tracks backlinks. When a website has a number of links coming from the same IP address even with different referring domains, it does not look natural. In fact, it looks very spammy and fabricated. Google figured that out a long time ago. What else is Google looking at?  
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1. Total Number of Inbound Links

Looking at all of the competitors in this matrix, we can see that some of them have massive amounts of links. This information is completely useless. I’ve seen spammy blog networks hit websites with 100k backlinks and take their traffic down by 30%. What is more important is the referring domains.  

2. Referring Domains

When comparing the amount of referring domains to total links, I typically look at the ratio. For instance, dizzyheights.com has 116,714 links coming from 63 referring domains. This means absolutely nothing to Google! If anything, it’s most likely hurting their rankings. It appears spammy and completely fabricated. Going deeper, we step into the referring IPs.  

3. Referring IPs

Many websites share IP addresses. When your hosting multiple websites on the same server, in many cases you’re sharing an IP address with the same IP address. You can use a reverse IP domain check to see other websites you’re sharing an IP with. You not only want your links to be coming from different domains, but different IPs as well, otherwise anyone could manually build backlinks which wouldn’t be good for Google.  

4. Referring Subnets

To take it a step further, Google checks to see if your backlinks are all on the same subnet. Even with different IP Addresses, they can still be on the same subnet.  

5. Deep Link Ratio

When people naturally link to a website, they usually link to a relevant page. If all of your backlinks are pointed to the root domain, chances are that it’s either a bunch of directories or backlinks are being manually fabricated. The higher the deep link ratio, the better.
By |2017-07-10T22:10:03+00:00November 12th, 2013|Categories: , , , |Tags: , |2 Comments

About the Author:

Joshua Belland is the CEO & Founder of Joshua Belland SEO Consulting. He specializes in developing SEO driven content strategies, while using his web development skills for technical SEO. Josh's career in SEO started in 2009 and uses his blog/writing as a means to give back to the SEO community while educating other's in the industry. Linkedin | Google+ | Twitter


  1. Dustin DeTorres November 22, 2013 at 4:36 pm - Reply

    I’m analyzing a domain for one of my friends. On ahrefs, it’s showing that there is a HUGE drop of in referring pages but a small consistent growth in referring domains. What’s going on you think?

    • jbelland November 22, 2013 at 6:50 pm - Reply

      Have you cross referenced it with another backlink analysis tool like Majestic SEO? There are some significant differences in the amount of data that each tool provides. Here is a study to reference: http://www.analyticsseo.com/us/blog/comparing-link-data-providers-numbers-dont-lie

      It could be that the referring domains could be deleting pages that were sending links to the target page. If this is happening, it may be a good thing. In my opinion, it’s better to have less overall links coming from a higher number of referring domains than the other way around. Now, are these referring domains also on separate IP’s and subnets?

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