How Can a Page Have a Top Ranking Without Any Backlinks?

how can a page have a URL rating but not have any backlinks?
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Ammon Johns πŸŽ“
Are you forgetting that links from any other page are backlinks that can pass value – including navigational links in the menu from your own other pages?
Many, many, many sites have the majority of all their links to their domain homepage, and it is their own navigational links and internal links that provide the backlinks for the internal pages.

Steven πŸ‘‘ Β» Ammon Johns
Ammon Johns πŸŽ“ Β» Steven
I swear, every time I see some muppet raving about how they made a page rank with NO BACKLINKS …
Steven πŸ‘‘ Β» Ammon Johns
No one hires muppets for Search Engine Optimization (SEO) anymore. The ones who hired muppets are out of business.
Ammon Johns πŸŽ“ Β» Steven
It was all a terrible misunderstanding that started when they misheard that algorithms sometimes use 'fuzzy logic' and hired..
Steven πŸ‘‘ Β» Ammon Johns
It started when YT channels like Income School said you don't need backlinks to rank. What amateurs didn't realize is that what they meant was you don't need to actively buy links or artificially build one as they are strong on content Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Their newer videos clarify what they meant. They devilishly didn't before.
Ammon Johns πŸŽ“ Β» Steven
I have genuinely never bought a link. I have had clients who did (some of whom did so against my advice and regretted it), and I have sold a fair few (sponsored links), but I consider them a desperation move. You can always get better links and cheaper by trading up – cash to effort to content to links.
I've also never had to pay to guest post. Instead I have a large number of places that are willing to pay me for any article I'd write for them, and would gladly accept any link in them knowing I'll have vetted it, it will be relevant, and that they'll almost certainly get more links in by publishing my article and so gain overall in whatever link value metrics they care to use.
Quality and reputation are priceless.
Steven πŸ‘‘ Β» Ammon Johns
I have mixed feelings toward simply relying on natural links. I understand the value of developing content to earn links. But as someone who works with logistics and clients looking for predictable results, I use a hybrid method. At some point, you need to embrace pragmatic approaches to compete in the market. I am a solutions provider, not just do consult.
I have a team of outreach link builders. Without them, I can't provide results that I promise to deliver in an environment where your top competitors actively buy links, including Fortune 500 and well-known brands.
Ammon Johns πŸŽ“ Β» Steven
Fully understand, and sometimes it isn't about what works, but about what a client will buy. Some clients value the certainty of paid links over the uncertainty of investing in content with no guarantees.
(Obviously, to me, I see that both have the exact same uncertainty over the long term in terms of whether or not actual link equity was gained.)
Not all link-attracting content ideas pan out. Sometimes that killer article, case study, or whatever just doesn't get traction. But not all links you buy actually pass value either, or will still pass value in 2-3 months time. You take your flavour of risk and uncertainty.
The difference for me then is that the paid link has almost no chance to ever be more valuable than expected, while the chance for content to outperform expectation, to go viral, is always there.
Likewise, often the content based link-attraction takes time to gather the links, while a paid link is almost instant. But that's the same trade-off we see every day in Pay Per Click (PPC) vs Organic.
Brandon ✍️ » Ammon Johns
Would you redirect those pages that show up as 404 but not indexed by google?
Charles Β» Brandon
Send all 404s to the homepage with a 301 redirect.
Ammon Johns πŸŽ“ Β» Charles
I always have custom 404 pages where possible, and ideally they'll be contextual, knowing from the URL structure of what was requested what might be some good alternate links to provide in that custom 404 page right after the apology for not being able to find the requested URL.
Charles Β» Ammon Johns
That's an interesting approach. What platforms make that easy to do?
Ammon Johns πŸŽ“ Β» Charles
Any site that is database driven, such as WordPress, and someone comfortable with handling dynamic sites and RegEx.
Brandon ✍️ » Ammon Johns
So you keep the 404s and write custom messages along with a relevant link in the messaging? Why?
Ammon Johns πŸŽ“ Β» Brandon
Because the ONLY reason we ever worry about search engines is because they deliver real people to buy stuff. So the real people and the 'buy stuff' is always the primary focus. If a person lands on that page, I want to highest possible chance of impressing them, and converting them.
The 404 is natural. Search engines *expect* to get a fair few 404s and even generate their own. You see, one thing built into most spiders is an ability to 'experiment' with URLs – essentially to look at the directory structure in a URL it has, and attempt to find if there is content it is missing in any of the parent directories. This generates a fair few 404s when done across the whole web.
Far from being a bad sign, a 404 is reassuring to a search engine. It tells them that this isn't an endless, bottomless spider trap. Thos bottomless spider-traps were a genuine spam thing done in the past, with content spinning software that created endless nonsense on demand, and created links that would create even more spun content, endlessly. The fastest way to spot those is that they cannot generate a 404, since they are instead built to create a random page for any request.
I saw an entire site tanked in the past when they accidentally served a 200 response on their custom 404 page. When you think about it, you see why. It says the URL is valid (200 response) but serves the exact same page (custom 404 page) and again, becomes a spider trap.
301 in the http specification does not mean "I want to redirect you" or "Here's something else you may like". It means "Found". It says that the precise and exact resource they requested has been found at this other URL.
Now, you can get away with very close direct equivalents and still be going by what the http status means. If, for example they requested the old, discontinued model and you redirect them to the new, updated version of that old one, that's fine.
But when someone asks for that specific make and model of product and you send them to the category page, where you may no longer have anything by that manufacturer, or no equivalent model, that's actually wrong.
I can say for sure that when I'm searching for a hard to find product, especially one most places are out of stock on and have discontinued, if I click on a link that promises to take me to that product, but when I arrive I've been redirected to a category page, where that product isn't even available, it feels like a bait and switch. It makes me think negatively of that site and its brand. In future, seeing that site in results where it may have been great, I'm less likely to click on its listing, and more likely to prefer other (rivals) companies.
If you are in for the long-haul, rather than it being a quick affiliate site that likely won't last any longer than the current payout program is the best, that stuff adds up. It can take a dozen interactions to make a customer feel loyal, but only one bad experience to make them distrust you, tell all their friends about the bad experience, recommend against your brand, etc.


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