Why Backlinks are Important

Why Backlinks are Important

Backlinks 101

As a website owner, you may have heard the term “backlinks” thrown around when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO). Backlinks, also known as inbound links, are links from other websites that direct users to your website. While the idea of backlinks may seem simple enough, the strategy behind building them is complex and essential to increasing your Google rank. In this article, we’ll explore the importance of a strong backlink strategy and the reputable resources you can turn to for guidance.


The Importance of Backlinks

Backlinks play a critical role in determining your website’s search engine ranking. In fact, Google has confirmed that backlinks are one of the top three ranking factors. Here’s why:

  1. Trust and Authority: Google views websites with more backlinks as more trustworthy and authoritative, since other websites are essentially vouching for the content on your site.
  2. Traffic: Backlinks can drive referral traffic to your website. When a user clicks on a link from another website to yours, you have the opportunity to convert that user into a customer or loyal reader.
  3. Indexation: Backlinks help Google’s crawlers discover new pages on your website. The more high-quality backlinks your site has, the more likely Google is to crawl your pages and index them in their search results.

Now that we understand the importance of backlinks, let’s dive into some reputable resources to help guide your backlink strategy.

1. Moz

Moz is a well-known name in the SEO industry, and for good reason. They offer a range of SEO tools and resources, including a backlink research tool. With this tool, you can see which websites are linking to your competitors and explore potential opportunities to build backlinks for your own website.


2. Ahrefs

Similar to Moz, Ahrefs offers a range of SEO tools, including a backlink analysis tool. Ahrefs’ backlink analysis tool provides data on the number of backlinks, referring domains, and top pages for any website. This information can help you identify high-quality websites to target for backlink building.


3. Neil Patel

Neil Patel is a well-known SEO expert and digital marketer. He has a blog where he regularly posts articles about SEO, including backlink strategies. His articles are easy to read and offer actionable tips that you can implement on your own website.


4. Backlinko

Backlinko is another popular blog that focuses on SEO and backlink strategies. Brian Dean, the founder of Backlinko, has a reputation for offering valuable insights into how to build high-quality backlinks that will improve your search engine ranking.


5. Google Search Console

Google Search Console is a free tool offered by Google that helps website owners monitor and maintain their site’s presence in Google search results. Within Search Console, you can see the number of backlinks your site has and which sites are linking to you. You can also use Search Console to submit new pages for indexing and identify any technical issues that may be impacting your site’s search engine ranking.

6. SEMRush

SEMRush is a popular SEO tool that offers a variety of features, including a backlink analysis tool. With this tool, you can view your website’s backlink profile, including the number of backlinks, referring domains, and the authority of the websites linking to your site. SEMRush also provides insights into your competitors’ backlink profiles, which can help you identify opportunities for building backlinks to your own website.


Editorial Links vs. Other Links

When it comes to building backlinks, it’s important to understand the difference between editorial links and other types of links. Editorial links are natural links that are earned based on the quality and relevance of your content. These links are given by websites that genuinely want to link to your content because they believe it will provide value to their readers. Editorial links are considered the most valuable type of backlink because they are difficult to acquire and are seen as the most trustworthy by search engines.

On the other hand, non-editorial links are those that are acquired through tactics like link exchanges, paid links, and other forms of link manipulation. These types of links can be seen as spammy and can harm your website’s reputation and search engine ranking. It’s important to avoid these types of links and focus on building high-quality editorial links instead.


Good Links vs. Bad Links

A good link is a backlink that comes from a high-quality, authoritative website in your industry. These links are earned naturally and are given because the linking website finds your content to be valuable and informative. Good links can help improve your website’s search engine ranking and can drive referral traffic to your website.

A bad link, on the other hand, is a backlink that comes from a low-quality website or a website that has no relevance to your industry. These links are often acquired through link schemes, paid links, or other forms of link manipulation. Bad links can harm your website’s search engine ranking and can even lead to penalties from search engines like Google. It’s important to regularly monitor your backlink profile and disavow any bad links that you discover.

In summary, building a strong backlink profile is crucial to improving your website’s search engine ranking. Focus on earning high-quality editorial links from authoritative websites in your industry, and avoid non-editorial links and bad links that can harm your website’s reputation. By following best practices and utilizing reputable resources for backlink strategy, you can build a strong backlink profile that will help drive traffic to your website and improve your search engine ranking.


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Top 5 Tools to Help Your Website Convert More Customers

Top 5 Tools to Help Your Website Convert More Customers


Lead generation has always been one of the core driving forces of great website design. But it’s not enough that your website generates a healthy stream of leads for your business. You also need to commit to increasing your website conversion rate.

Don’t stop at converting skeptical prospects into piping hot leads. 

You have to ensure these hot leads translate to more business calls and sales. While a lot of factors may impact this, incorporating the five tools and tips below will go a long way to help you hit the website conversion rate bullseye.


1. OptinMonster – Grow your email list

There’s a reason why they say the money is in the list. 

According to OptinMonster, 92% of online adults use email, with about 61% using it almost every day. Studies have also shown just how important marketing emails can be in turning window shoppers into purchasing customers, boosting engagement as well as improving customer loyalty and retention. 

43% of Americans subscribe to email lists, with at least a third of the entire US retail email list having purchased at least once from the brands sending them emails. 

The case for email marketing is a strong one.

And while it can be challenging to build a list, website conversion rate optimization tools like OptinMonster can make a whole lot of difference even if you’re building a list from the ground up. This will come in handy when you’re looking to turn a sizable chunk of your website traffic to email subscribers and paying customers.


2. MailChimp – Manage and automate email marketing

Email marketing accounts for the greatest portion of revenue for 59% of marketers. If you’re not actively doing this, you sure are leaving too much on the table for your competitors. 

Ecommerce businesses, for instance, can leverage the ‘abandoned cart strategy’ to turn even the coldest of leads to buyers. Statistics have it that this strategy can result in sales in up to 60% of cases and plans for future purchases in about 70% of cases. But with email marketing, personalization and automation are two very important factors. 

conversion rate for different strategies

Perceived level of ROI generated by selected digital marketing channels according to marketers worldwide as of June 2017 – Statista.

Personalized abandoned cart emails may cause up to 60% of shoppers to return and complete their purchase. Also, automated emails generate 320% more revenue, compared to non-automated emails. 

Personalization ensures your subscribers can receive emails that are much more relevant to them rather than being too broad or generic. This is a tough call when you’re dealing with subscribers in their hundreds or thousands. Fortunately, with tools like MailChimp and Constant Contact, among others, personalization and automation of your emails will always be a breeze.


3. Hootsuite – Connect with your customers on social media

More than half of the world’s 7.6 billion people are now on social media.

Chances are your customers regularly frequent one or more of the most popular platforms such as FaceBook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, LinkedIn, etc. 

90% of people on Instagram follow at least one business. 

83% of the 1 billion people on Instagram report using the platform to discover new products and services with a greater 87% saying they took specific actions such as making a purchase after seeing product information on Instagram.  (Facebook for Business)

Instagram is just one of these many opportunities.

Once you identify where your audience is more likely to hang out, you’ll need to establish your brand presence on these platforms to better connect and engage with your audience. 

Tools like Hootsuite, Social Sprout, and Buffer Publish make it easy to monitor multiple social media platforms from a single channel. They can help you schedule and automate posts in advance, gain insights into your analytics, engage your audience better and even deliver better customer service experience via your social platforms. 


4. CrazyEgg – Track what works and what doesn’t

Success often requires a lot of trials and errors and marketing also involves A/B testing to figure out strategies that guarantee better performance. 

If this idea excites you, and it should, the one-of-a-kind Crazy Egg website conversion rate optimization tool can help you track and analyze how website visitors interact with your website. This gives you deeper insight into the buyer’s journey, enabling you to identify glitches such as slow website loading speed and other issues capable of impacting user experience, and ultimately, leads conversion. Crazy Egg also helps website administrators with A/B testing to set up specific pages to determine what works best.


5. Mention – Monitor, analyze, and respond to brand mentions

Social media has made the world more connected than it’s ever been.

While many brands and businesses continue to invest in paid digital advertisements, and rightly so, some tend to lose sight of the importance of guarding and strengthening their brand reputation by taking control of the conversations around their brand. Tools like Mention as well as Cyfe and TweetDeck are great for this. 

These tools help you monitor brand mentions from your user base so you can craft ideal responses to this. There are many reasons why this is a big deal.

According to Forbes;

  • 81% of consumers prioritize customer experience as a competitive differentiator that can impact their purchasing decision. God help you if the conversations around your brand aren’t favorable enough. 
  • 77% of consumers prefer brands that seek out and apply customer feedback. And;
  • Consumers can pay up to 17% more patronizing a brand with a great reputation for service.


Gaining enough leads is one thing. 

But leads don’t automatically convert to sales on many occasions. 

Regardless of wherever your prospects are in their buyer’s journey, incorporating some of the tools and tips we discussed above can help make a world of difference as far as boosting your website’s conversion rate is concerned. From building your email list with tools like OptinMonster to personalizing automated emails with MailChimp and Constant Contact, using the right tools alongside great product and service offerings and an overall positive customer experience will not only help you generate more leads but also ensure these leads convert to sales to further boost your business’s bottom line. 


Want more leads and sales? Who doesn’t!

Whether you’re in the process of building a business website or looking to significantly boost conversion rate across your website, we’ll be more than happy to help. 

If you’re all set for this next phase of growth, do click here to book a consultation session with the digital marketing and conversion rate experts at Black Tusk Web.


2021 Online Shopping Trends: Navigating the Shift to Online Shopping

2021 Online Shopping Trends: Navigating the Shift to Online Shopping

2020 will go down as a tough year, and for obvious reasons.

But at the same time, the year has brought more progress in ecommerce and digital retail than any year in recent times. And you don’t have to look too far to see the evidence for this. In October 2020, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development conducted a survey on COVID-19 and ecommerce. That survey showed two key things;

  • First, the pandemic accelerated major shifts towards online shopping for most of 2020, and;
  • Secondly, these COVID-driven changes in online shopping and consumer behaviors are more than likely to last forever!


Almost everyone will agree that COVID was the defining event of 2020.

However, it’s safe to say it was also the year that online shopping got a major push. Looking back at the past twelve months, here are five of the trends that defined ecommerce and online retail in 2020;


1. Online shopping will keep growing

Global retail sales stood at ‘just’ $1.4 trillion in 2014.

According to Statista, the sector recorded sales of $3.5 trillion in sales in 2019 and $4.2 trillion in 2020.

Ecommerce sales total is projected to hit almost $5 billion in 2021. And according to data from the US Commerce Department, online sales grew by as much as 40.3% in 2020.

To put that stat above in perspective, the US ecommerce sector saw its highest growth in about two decades. This sector is growing at an incredible pace and is certain to keep the momentum into2021 and beyond.

Ecommerce sales from 2014 through 2023 (Actual data and projections).

Image Credit: Statista


2. COVID will permanently change ecommerce retail

COVID-19 drove major changes in ecommerce retail in 2020.

More data from Statista shows the Canadian ecommerce sector will record about $32.4 billion in sales in 2021. This estimate represents about 8% year-over-year growth compared to 2020 figures. In the US, the sector saw $153 billion more sales driven by COVID and recorded growth that would have taken two years to achieve without the pandemic.

Before now, ecommerce has always been touted as the future of retail.

But that future seems to be coming faster than experts initially predicted, thanks to COVID-19 related buying shifts. These changes and trends will likely be prominent even after COVID is gone.

US ecommerce sales

US ecommerce growth in 2020.

Image Credit: Digital Commerce 360, US Department of Commerce


3. The rise of mobile shopping

M-commerce, the portion of ecommerce transactions conducted on mobile devices, has grown 15% since 2016. According to Oberlo, 53% of online shoppers use their smartphones to access ecommerce stores and make purchases online.

But even more critical, Statista projects that this will account for up to 73% of total ecommerce sales in 2021. This sector of the ecommerce market is just too much to leave on the table untapped. To start with, you want to focus on creating ecommerce stores and websites that are responsive and easily accessible on mobile and other channels.


4. More young people are shopping online than ever

52% of online shoppers doubled their spending online after the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. While this trend was observed among shoppers of different age ranges, the most significant shift was seen among young millennials and Gen Z shoppers.

Reliable data from Shopify shows that 67% of shoppers between the ages of 18 and 34 spend more money ordering products online now than they did before COVID-19.

Ecommerce businesses that want to tap into this market will consider improving their social media marketing efforts and maintaining responsive websites and stores to get started.


5. Augmented reality is transforming how we shop

Finally, there’s also the rise of AR in online retail.

Augmented reality is helping to bridge a gap that has always been a constraint for many people considering shopping online. This has to do with the inability to see the products first-hand. AR is helping potential buyers to better visualize the products they’re considering. This grew significantly in 2020, and PR Newswire predicts that up to 122,000 stores will adopt this technology in 2021.



2020 has been very busy for ecommerce. 2021 promises even more opportunities.

Ecommerce sellers across different sectors saw a massive boom in sales and patronage triggered in part by the pandemic. Niches like health and safety, digital streaming, food and beverage, among others, are cashing out on the shift in online shopping.

While the competition has always been fierce in this sector, creating a happy and positive experience for shoppers will be critical to the success of both new and established ecommerce businesses. Up to 57% of shoppers are willing to shop with a new brand for the first time. However, the purchasing experience you deliver will prove crucial to customer retention, loyalty, and subsequent growth.


What we do at Black Tusk Web

We help new and established businesses, including ecommerce, create and deliver rich experiences on the web with our cutting-edge web design and digital marketing services.

If you care about user experience and responsiveness, and you should as these things impact sales and conversion, we can help build your website from scratch or finetune what you have already to help you maximize your business’s growth potential.

Contact us at Black Tusk Web today to learn more or get started!