In the SEO world, backlinks are a great thing. Increasing the amount of backlinks pointing toward your site will help improve your site’s visibility in common search engines, such as: Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Even though increasing your backlink count is a good practice to undertake, sometimes where the backlinks come from can be an issue, especially if the backlinks are inorganic. For some time Google’s Penguin update has added considerable weight to backlink origin, so it’s important to check the backlink origins of your website if you want to improve your existing optimisation.
If this is overlooked, the algorithm may decide your website has used unfair techniques to get ranked, and as a result you might suffer the opposite effect – a penalty from Google. Originally Google confirmed these penalties did not exist, but that was now several years ago andits stance has long since changed. Search engines want to ensure nobody is cheating the system, and every major update brings them closer to picking up on any illicit tactics that are being employed by websites.
To check if your site is overly optimised to the point of penalty, there are a few free tools you can turn to. Some of these tools will e-mail you a report of the amount of bad/inorganic links that are pointing to your website. All that you have to do is to specify the URL of your website, along with the e-mail address where you would like the report e-mailed to you, and the software will automatically review your website for you.
Following these steps, a comprehensive list of the inorganic backlinks will be displayed. This will help you determine how to organise your current backlink situation, along with displaying the anchor text that the backlinks to your website come from. It might be that you find your website is classed as over-optimised, and this is an indication that Google is likely to penalise you for this tactic. Cleaning up any grey or black hat SEO techniques that might have been acceptable a few years ago is always an important priority for websites looking to maintain good positions in the long term.