Oct 23, 2020 - 09:14 AM
In short, absolutely yes. Links help Google in so many ways and the metrics you're referencing can change on a dime... wouldn't be reliable. In some cases the sample size would be too small. Google is not as advanced as we think. Even if the weight of links changes, you need them to enter the race.
So, is your proposition that Google has a lot of data available to analyse and doesn’t use backlinks in its ranking process?
Because there is an enormous amount of evidence showing that backlinks are an important part of the ranking calculation.
Are you suggesting this is actually incorrect?
[Nick Jordan's Reply]
I'm suggesting optimizing for UX metrics while ignoring link building has helped me create some huge outcomes, even on low DR sites. Backlinks seem pretty easily gamed in 2020 and it just seems like too big of an oversight on Google's behalf.
Links are litmus test for assumptions made with data.
They corroborate the story, and work very similar to trusted (legitimate) reviews.
[Joao R Frietas]
Backlinks are for websites in a way as references are for academic works.
What's written in essays if is reasonable and supported by logic should not be referenced, as it stands by itself. The same with Google, the data they have should be enough to clearly determine the ranking.
The reason why referencing is important is because it's a visible, tangible validation of some premises, statements and lines of thought. The same goes for legit backlinking.
I don't see any interest in eliminating this variable from the ranking algorithm. The weight it has, that's a different story.
For many of the keywords I rank for, I have the least amount of backlinks and DR / DA of any 1st page result.
And I can't explain it unless backlinks are weighted less than commonly thought.
Here are things my pages usually have one or more of than most of the other results:
- More words & structured data
- More reader value
- Higher converting metas
- More internal links
- More referral traffic