Wish you had a crystal ball to see the future?
While horoscopes, palm readers and psychics can all promise to tell you what your fate holds, sometimes a little strategic thinking is all you need.
When it comes to predicting the future of your website, you don’t need tarot cards to see where you’re headed.
All you need is a backlink checking tool.
A backlink checking tool can help you decipher the direction your search engine rankings will move, allowing you to determine your website’s fate.
You can see when things are going well, and when your rankings may improve.
You can see clearly when your site will need a real backlink boost to take off.
You can also predict when things might go sour, and prevent that undesirable future from happening.
When you know how to appropriately apply the information from a backlink checking tool to your SEO strategy, you can move your website in the direction you want.
How to Use a Backlink Checking Tool to Control Your Fate
Let’s take a look at four ways you can use a backlink checker tool to predict your website’s fate. To demonstrate, we’ll be using the Monitor Backlinks backlink checker tool, naturally.
If you already have a Monitor Backlinks account, all you need to do it log in and click the Your Links tab. To check competitor backlinks, click the Competitor Links tab.
If you don’t have a Monitor Backlinks account yet, you can take advantage of the 30-day free trial and follow along with the rest of this post.
Monitor Backlinks also has a Free Backlink Checker tool which you can use for limited searches, just to get a taste of what checking backlinks can do for you.
With the tactics below, you’ll be able take matters into your own hands to get the SEO results you want.
1. Predict if Your Competitors Will Outrank You
When appearing on a search engine results list, you want your content to be displayed above your competitors’ content.
In order to ensure your strategy is stronger than theirs, you need to know exactly what your competitors are doing to boost their own pieces—including how they’re securing backlinks and where they’re being placed.
Yes, there are other SEO factors aside from backlinks that might boost them higher than you. But backlinks definitely make a big difference.
If your competitors are landing more or stronger backlinks, they have a better chance of reaching the top of the SERP.
By successfully checking out where their links are coming from, you can find new pages that may be interested in linking to your content. You can also know the quantity and quality of backlinks you’ll need to secure to make your SEO strategy more competitive.
The Monitor Backlinks tool gives you access to a number of features related to SEO and backlinks—perfect for spying and seeing where competitors have an SEO advantage.
First, you can check SEO metrics like Trust Flow, Citation Flow and more.
Within the full Monitor Backlinks tool, you can view all the most recent competitor backlinks added or updated.
Keeping an eye on new backlinks as they come in can ensure you’re maintaining a competitive strategy.
When you see an increase in activity with your competitors’ links, you’ll also know that you need to up your game if you don’t want them to outrank you.
Pay close attention to which websites are linking to your competitors. If they’re high-quality sources, you may want to try to steal your competitors’ links or secure a unique link of your own.
The Competitor Links section of Monitor Backlinks can tell you the date the backlink was added, the URL source of the backlink and the anchor text of the backlink.
It will also tell you important information about how strong that backlink is, such as the Trust Flow and the Citation Flow. These metrics can help you determine which of your competitors’ backlinks are worth going after.
2. Manage Your Digital Relationships
Building strong online relationships is an important part of running a business.
Not only can the right relationships help you land more backlinks, strong digital partners can help boost your SEO strategy by giving you more attention, reviews and support. A backlink tool, such as Monitor Backlinks, can help you manage those relations.
Every time you get a new link to your page, you want to maximize the benefits. Through reaching out to the individual who included your link or left a review, you can thank them for mentioning your brand and encourage them to link to your page more.
Additionally, you can get to know what these journalists, bloggers or writers are looking for with the backlinks they feature, increasing your chances of getting more backlinks in the future.
To start, on the Overview screen of Monitor Backlinks, you’ll always be able to see the newest changes to your backlinks profile.
That’s a nice, quick overview for you to keep tabs on what’s going on. From there, you can click See All to get to the Your Links dashboard within Monitor Backlinks.
On this page, you’ll be able to see what new links have been added and where each link is coming from. Sorting by the Date column is the way to go here.
Of course, when working with the Monitor Backlinks tool, you’ll also get regular email reports with information about newly-added and newly-updated backlinks to your site, so you won’t need to be on the dashboard all the time.
To manage your digital relationships, you can follow the new links, discover who wrote the articles with the backlinks and then send them an email or message thanking them for their backlink.
Once you’ve made this initial contact, you can work with the writer to see what kinds of backlinks they may want in the future, or see if they’re interested in any other collaborations.
3. Stay on Top of Your Link Losses
It’s natural to lose a link here and there. When content is updated, a website closes down, or a page is removed, a backlink can slip away in the process. While it’s normal to anticipate a link disappearing every now and then, you need to stay on top of your link losses to ensure you’re effectively replacing them as they go.
Through keeping an eye on the new links coming in, something that is always shown on the main dashboard, you can analyze how many new backlinks you’re getting compared to your total number of backlinks.
You always want your net backlink number to grow. You want to keep your eye on the number of new links coming in, but if you’re only counting new links without considering lost links, you’ll end up with an inaccurate count. So, keep an eye on that total number in the Your Links dashboard, too.
A good backlink checking tool will keep you abreast of all changes to backlinks.
For this purpose, when you’re using the Monitor Backlinks tool, you’ll want to keep an eye on the Link Status Changes section of the Overview screen.
When you’re losing links—regardless of the reason—you need to work overtime to ensure your number of backlinks is still growing. Click See All to see a more complete overview of backlink profile changes.
You can also reach this page by clicking the Link Changes tab of the main dashboard.
This changelog will show you the status of your various backlinks, as well as give you updates on how your backlinks are changing.
This allows you to stay on top of these status shifts, putting the control back in your hands.
Within this log, you’ll notice that a red link typically indicates some kind of error or problem finding the link. If your link has changed from Followed (status shown in gray) to a red error link, it typically means you’ll want to reach out to the owner of the website to see what you can do to change the link status back.
On the other hand, this page can also help you monitor when a backlink error is solved. If the old status changes from an error to Followed, you’ll know that backlink problem has been resolved.
If you notice that your total number of backlinks is dropping even though you’re bringing in new links, you’ll want to adjust your strategy.
4. Prevent Bad Backlinks from Hurting Your Growth
When it comes to growing your backlinks, certain websites can actually hurt your SEO strategy.
Sometimes they hurt you on purpose (which is known as negative SEO or black hat SEO). Other times, they’re oblivious to the negative impact of their site—they might think they’re helping you out with their backlink.
Either way, Google and other search engines may actually penalize your website for these poor backlinks.
In order to improve your SEO strategy, you’ll want to eliminate these backlinks.
The first step in removing bad backlinks is to determine which links are actually hurting your SERP rankings. Bad backlinks can come from untrusted sources, sites with terrible SEO metrics, new sites, spam sites, poorly-made directories with millions of links everywhere, “adult” sites, sites that aren’t relevant to your industry and sites not indexed by Google.
You can sniff out all of these problems in the Your Links section of the Monitor Backlinks dashboard.
For one, you’ll quickly see the Google Index status of each backlink. If a site isn’t indexed by Google, this may be a sign that the site could hurt your SEO strategy. You’ll want to keep an eye on the Trust Flow and Citation Flow of the pages linking to your content, too. These numbers can tell you how trustworthy a website is and what kind of influence that website has on their readers.
Look for warning signs provided within Monitor Backlinks—the tool will point out all the backlinks that could cause you problems.
You might notice that you have tons and tons of negative links with warning flags, coming from nasty websites with thousands of suspicious links and no real content. This could seriously bring you down in the SERP.
And if it hasn’t happened to you yet, it could someday. The more you succeed, the more competitors will want to outrank you, and the more likely it is that someone uses a shady tactic like spamming you with terrible backlinks. You’ll want to be watching out for any sudden spike in bad backlinks.
Of course, when you have a lot of bad backlinks, you’ll need to take action to disavow them.
Now this isn’t typical of every backlink checking tool, but there is a Disavow Tool built into Monitor Backlinks.
You can build a one-off disavow file to submit to Google here, or you can set Disavow Rules for your domains, letting Monitor Backlinks know exactly when you’d like to flag a bad link for disavowal.
This can keep your SEO strategy strong and ensure you’re not dragged down with bad links.
Get Started with a Backlink Checking Tool
When it comes to your search engine listings, you shouldn’t let fate control where you fall.
When you take the reins and begin to nudge your SEO strategy in the direction you want, you can increase your rankings and start seeing better results.
With a backlink checking tool like Monitor Backlinks, you can manage your entire link building strategy from one place.
By keeping your eye on your lost links, your competitors’ strategies, and the bad backlinks that may be hurting your ranking, you can make strategic decisions to keep your SEO strategy moving in the right direction.