FAQ: Is it Okay to Create Backlinks to Your Amazon Product Listing?
Should You Create Backlinks to Your Product Listing?
A question Amazon sellers often ask is: “Should I create backlinks (external referral links placed on other websites) for my Amazon product listing(s)?
In this post, I will attempt to answer this question, as it is very important to understand how backlinking is important, but can also create problems for you if you're not careful.
The answer, unfortunately, isn’t a clear “yes” or “no.”
Let me elaborate.
In the context of web page search engine optimization (SEO), the number one rank factor Google looks for is the number of links directed to a site.
Logic would dictate that more backlinks to your Amazon product listing would help get it ranked in the search engines.
This is good for you as more traffic to your listing gives you more opportunities to convert those visits to an actual purchase.
But Not So Fast!
As an Amazon seller, you have some unique challenges, in part because you have little control over the amount of content you can produce on a product listing, and the type of content you can display.
This makes on-page SEO challenging outside the context of Amazon’s A9 search engine.
Another challenge is in relevancy and keyword conversions.
Just because you have a link to your listing sitting on someone’s page - doesn’t mean Google will give you credit for it.
In fact, they may just penalize you, if you end up being on a page that it determines to be non-relevant to your link.
Who & What Should You Be Linking To Is the Question…
There are a couple questions you should ask yourself in the context of promoting your Amazon product listing:
- Where should you be creating backlinks and
- What pages should you be linking to?
In 2018 and beyond, Google will be rewarding websites that show:
- Strong content-based relevancy on the topics visitors are searching for.
- Engaging content that keeps visitors on the page for long periods of time (content that people love).
- Are secure (with SSL encryption) and comply with worldwide data collection and privacy standards (like GDPR).
If you were to just give your product listing URL to a “service” that promised to create thousands of backlinks to your listing - think about that for a moment.
What they will probably do is blast out the links to listing agencies an article farms (which Google has become very good at sniffing out and flagging).
And then you have what is called in the SEO industry as a bad link target - a link that exhibits characteristics of poor domain authority, relevancy, and is potentially associated with black-hat SEO practices.
Link-Building Strategies That Work
For backlinks to have a positive impact on bringing more traffic and sales, you need to be focused on building backlinks on websites that are:
1. Relevant to your product and/or brand’s niche
2. Have good content
3. Practice good SEO themselves
What a Good Backlink Looks Like
To create good backlinks, you need to know what a good backlink looks like:
According to SEO expert Brian Dean, good backlinks exhibit five characteristics:
- They come from trusted “authority” websites
- The backlinks include your target keyword in the link’s anchor text (that is the visible text part of the link)
- The site that is linking to you is related topically to your website.
- The link is a “Dofollow” Link. This means that your link tag is signaling to Google that it wants to be indexed. Otherwise, if the link is “no-follow” then the search engine will ignore it. (Most links automatically default to “do-follow” so if you’re using white hat techniques, you shouldn’t worry about this).
- You have links from domains that haven’t linked to you before (freshness counts!)
Backlinking Strategy for Amazon Product Listings
Use the “Next-Door Neighbor” Approach to Backlinking for your Amazon Product Listing Pages
When you’re creating organic and content-relevant backlinks to your website and posts, it helps build credibility to your website and signals to Google that your page is relevant for the keywords being targeted.
Remember that people that search on Google are in a different mindset than people who go directly to Amazon and search.
People searching on Google are usually searching for information and looking for solutions to problems.
If they were to simply stumble upon your product listing link in a post or website, and it wasn’t relevant at all to what they were originally searching for, then they will either:
a) Not click on the link or
b) Click on the link out of curiosity but not buy your product.
Think of your relationship with these potential customers as “next-door neighbors.”
You may want to invite them in for a cup of tea, but before you do, you need to be sure it’s safe to do so!
How you can do this in the context of your product listings is to develop backlinks that point to content on your brand’s blog instead.
That way people are coming to your website, where you can embed remarketing pixels.
Now you can segment your visitors based on their willingness to buy your products.
How This Helps your Ranking on Google and On Amazon
The main benefit of this strategy is that it helps keep your conversion rates high on your product listings.
Because if you were to simply create a backlink farm to your product listing, you would get a lot of junk hits to your listing without any sales.
And each time that happens, it signals to Amazon's algorithms that you are not relevant for the keywords the referring page was linked to, and you just get buried deeper in the pages.
So just think about relevancy here, just like in real life - would you try to sell a steak to a Vegetarian?
Same thing with SEO. Be genuine with what you're selling.
Identify the pain points and problems and develop content around that.
Drive traffic to that resource and establish yourself as the authority figure for your niche.
While driving external traffic to your product listings is important, avoid the temptation of settling for low-quality traffic in the form of backlinks that sit on websites that are not relevant to your product, your brand’s niche, or have questionable SEO practices.
You can improve your conversions and page rank by using a backlink strategy that focuses on quality rather than quantity. One high-quality backlink can legitimately be worth more than 100 lesser quality links.
To help your efforts focus on creating a backlink strategy that incorporates the points mentioned in this post:
1. Associate your link with sites that are relevant to the niche you’re selling in.
2. Ensure your link is being shared within useful and engaging content.
3. Audit the sites that your link will be placed on and audit them regularly. Are these sites practicing good SEO? Are they “Google-friendly”?