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What are Natural Links and What is a Sign of Natural Link?


Search engines claim that for the rankings are taken into account only natural links, mainly, those that appear without the participation of the optimizer in the content creation process.

Such links are created to complement or prove the material, or not to infringe copyright if any parts of the document or ideas are borrowed from another source. We collected the definitions of natural links from experts and compiled a list of characteristics by which search engines determine the naturalness or unnaturalness of links.

Natural links more often appear on information sites than commercial ones. Commercial sites find it harder to get a natural mention.

Search Engines about Natural Links

There is no definition of a natural link in Google Support, but there is an interesting clarification:
Publishers usually publish links by making a conscious choice in favor of a particular resource.

Another help center article points out:
Natural links to your site develop as part of the dynamic nature of the web when other sites find your content valuable and think it would be helpful for their visitors. Unnatural links to your site are placed there specifically to make your site look more popular to search engines.

John Mueller, Google Search Quality Specialist, said in a Google Webmaster Help thread that creating quality links is a direct violation of the instructions of Google webmaster guidelines.

Yandex appreciates links that are put in order to help visitors to the site. Such links, as a rule, indicate confidence in the source of information, or its significance, and this, in general, improves the quality of the search.
Yandex also defines SEO links as links placed on third-party sites on a commercial basis and intended to manipulate ranking algorithms.

The most important sign of natural links

We all understand that most links are unnatural. Since they appear as a result of the actions of the SEO optimizer or the owner of the promoted site.

Webmasters and SEO specialists have collected all the signs by which search engines in one way or another determine the nature of the link. Fortunately, we can successfully influence all these characteristics: select highly relevant thematic sites, create natural traffic using a fresh link and agree on the location of the link in the text.

But there is one factor that is rarely talked about, and which is rarely taken into account - how much is expected the link to this page here and now in this context, in this situation, on this request.

The times when users "stayed" on sites and read article after article have already passed. The maximum that the site receives is a few additional quick clicks on the recommended content.

In most cases, users go in search, enter a query and select a site from the list proposed by the search engine.

Already at the stage of selecting a source from the search results, the user takes into account how much the site (not a page with text, but the site itself) matches the subject of his request and decides whether this site can give an expert answer or not.

When placing a link, it is important to consider:

  • how authoritative is the donor site in the subject of the promoted site
  • how likely is it that the user selects this site from search results for a thematic query

To summarize, we have compiled a list of characteristics of natural links:

  • relevant to the topic of donor and recipient
  • appear for free, without agreement
  • are put in the interests of users in order to help, supplement the material or confirm the data
  • correctly entered into the main content, do not disappear, do not blink
  • the link is expected on this site and in this content, placed with other thematic links to other resources
  • donor site regularly publishes related content
  • links are advisory
  • users follow the link

We hope these guidelines will help you get even more effective links to your websites. In case you want to get the quality links with the help of professionals, leave us a message about your project.

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