Arguably the most important thing that you do, as a SEO method, for any website is to build backlinks. Backlinks will help to move your website up in search engine rankings, which is the best way to gain good, organic, and targeted traffic. Backlinks are also the only way to increase your web site’s Google PR, or PageRank. They key, to any SEO method, is to able to track your progress. This is vital to being able to know what works best and what to invest the most time in. Because of this it is important that you know this SEO method for checking backlinks to your web site.
The first, and easiest, method to check backlinks is through a search engine. It should be noted that Google takes a long time to update their backlinks that it will display, even though it counts them. Because of this Yahoo! is probably the best search engine to check your backlinks in. Just go to Yahoo!’s website and type in the simple search query: where yoursite, obviously, is your web site’s URL. Some additional features to use is to narrow this down to links from other sites, as you are not concerned with links coming your website. To do this select Except from this domain from the drop down menu at the top of the page. You now have a complete list of back links, to your site, in just a few moments. This is, however, not the best way to check back links for you site. It has minimal features and often is slow in updating.

One of the best methods for checking backlinks is through third party tools. There are a wide number of freely available tools on the internet, the one I use most often is Backlinkwatch. There are quite a few benefits of using a site like this to check your backlinks. First of all, unlike using search engines, these tools take their data from a large number of sources giving you a much more accurate picture of what your current backlink situation really looks like. Next up they provide extra features, such the PageRank, or measure of authority, that each page holding your backlink has. Also another feature that many have is the ability to display which backlinks come from nofollow sites. And finally you can see the number of other out bound links on the page that your backlink comes from. All of these are measures of how strong a backlink will be.

It is important to be able to get these kinds of stats on backlinks to know which ones are best. This especially helpful if you have multiple websites, you can now see where your backlinks come from, and which ones are the most powerful, and use the same sources to more quickly build backlinks to your other websites. You can also use them for deep linking, or building backlinks to additional pages within your same website. Deep linking is a great strategy for allowing your entire web site to gain more authority, and PR, rather than just your index page.

Now that you know the best methods for checking back links to your web site you can incorporate this into your routine of search engine optimization techniques. This is a great SEO, and every web master should know how to check backlinks to their websites.