We're all looking for better ways to get backlinks.
And we often see advice telling us to drop backlinks in comments on blogs, forums and Q&A sites like Quora.
Back in the old days, even the spammiest backlinks on forums were recognized by Google and could give you a quick boost in the SERP rankings.
However, times have changed. Most sites like Quora only offer nofollow backlinks now, and these don't technically pass any "link juice."
So, where do Quora backlinks fit into a digital marketing plan?
Well, here's a quick summary: Quora backlinks can be incredibly useful for your website, but probably not in the way that you'd expect.
Today we'll talk about what Quora backlinks can (and can't) do for you in terms of SEO and referral traffic.
And as a bonus, later on in this rundown I'm going to give you six easy steps to make Quora backlinks as valuable as possible!
What Quora Backlinks Can't Do: Provide Link Juice
If your only goal in getting backlinks is to improve your SEO metrics (Domain Authority, Trust Flow, Citation Flow) and rank higher in Google results, the knowledge that Quora only gives nofollow backlinks probably turned you off.
You might be starting to lose interest in Quora backlinks at this point, but don't give up on them just yet.
It's true: all backlinks from Quora are nofollow.
This means that the sheer presence of the links themselves won't help your SERP ranking.
However, dofollow backlinks are not the only kind of backlinks that your website needs.
Nofollow backlinks have loads of benefits for your website, especially when coming from such a well-traveled website as Quora.
So, let's talk about four of the ways that Quora backlinks can provide value to your website.
What Quora Backlinks Can Do
Create Awareness for Your Website
Creating awareness is one of the best goals that you can have while using Quora.
Quora itself tells us that the website has over 200 million unique visitors every month.
Top Quora writers such as Jimmy Wales, Robert Scoble or Stephen Fry are getting thousands of views on their answers per month (Jimmy Wales actually has an average of over 100k views on his answers per month).
Just think of the possibilities!
When you answer the right questions (ones that garner attention and discussion) and give the right answers, the upvotes could propel to the top of the answers section and you could be seeing hundreds, if not thousands, of Quora views.
You could even see your answer (and your profile name) as the snippet in their emails which go out regularly to subscribers—these include a series of recent questions that the subscribers have indicated interest in, and a little taste of the best answer is always given.
Now, include links within your answers, and your links could be viewed hundreds (if not thousands) of times per month.
But that's not all.
You can discover traffic on Quora that's highly targeted to your niche, no matter what it is. Whether your site is about fishing or computer hardware, you can find people asking about it here.
By answering questions related to your niche topic, you're getting your name, website and knowledge in front of people who are already interested in that topic. Thus, they're more likely to follow the links you provide, especially if those lead links to more valuable information that answers their questions.
This is targeted referral traffic that could turn into conversions for your business!
Lead Directly to Conversions
Remember, people on Quora are searching for answers.
You can give answers all day long and see no traffic to your site. The trick is that you need to find the right questions.
Let's imagine that you sell a product related to dog training.
There are tons of questions about dog training on Quora, so it'll be easy to find one that hasn't been answered yet. You can quickly search topics and even find niche subtopics (so if your website is 100% focused on positive dog training, you're can search for that specific topic).
Pick the right question in the right niche—it should all be highly relevant to your niche.
After giving some advice, you provide a link to your information page or product, and make that link appealing to the reader (we'll talk more about this later).
How many visitors and conversions could that one link give you?
That one answer, if done right, could generate hundreds of clicks to your website. After all, Quora itself gets hundreds of millions of pageviews daily.
While Quora might not be a big traffic-driver in the ranks of Facebook or Twitter, it has the advantage of driving better-quality traffic.
And the better the quality of the traffic, the better your conversion rate will be.
Your target audience is all gathered together on Quora because they want to find solutions to their problems. You can tell what the user intent is very easily—they're telling you directly, with specific questions, begging for your knowledge and product recommendations, like "what is the best leash for small dogs?" That's your chance to swoop in with a well-thought-out, expert leash recommendation (plus a link to an informative blog post or review).
Presenting your information or product to a group of people who already know they need it equals getting in at the very end of the sales funnel.
Generate New Dofollow Links
It only takes one link to a great article for people to get excited about your content.
And that link doesn't have to be dofollow to generate an audience.
If people really like the content that you're referencing in your Quora answers, they may use that link in a blog post or mention it online in some other form.
You could actually generate new dofollow links simply by placing your links on Quora!
If you really want to ensure new, dofollow links from your Quora answers, try this method:
- Write a case study or create an infographic on your website with tons of great statistics
- Include those statistics within your Quora answers whenever appropriate
- Link out to the case study or infographic on your website where the stats are located
- Invite people to use those statistics on their own website
People love quoting good stats to make a point, so this is a sure-fire method to get your case studies and infographics in front of the right people.
Give Your Website Credibility with Search Engines
While it's true that having dofollow links is essential to your backlink profile, this isn't the only kind of backlink that you want to have in order to better optimize your website.
Google analyzes all of your backlinks individually and as a whole profile. So, when they see that you only have dofollow links, this is a warning sign of manipulative SEO practices.
This could in turn lead to penalties for your website.
In short, every natural backlink profile should have a balanced ratio of dofollow to nofollow links.
While it can't provide you with link juice, Quora is still a powerful website. It has a Citation Flow of 61, and its Alexa Rank is 117 globally, 53 in the United States (where it's most popular).
So, backlinks from Quora, although nofollow, will help balance out your backlink profile.
But how can you receive these amazing benefits? Check out these six easy steps to getting better results from Quora backlinks.
1. Change Your View
If you only view Quora as a place to spread backlinks to your website, I'll tell you right now: You're doing it wrong.
Remember, your target audience is on Quora right now, but they're not looking for links.
They're looking for answers.
So, here's the first step to Quora backlink success: View Quora primarily as a place to answer people's questions. The backlinks should only come in when necessary and appropriate.
An "answer" like this, stuffed with keywords and backlinks yet never answering the question ("Will SEO die?") isn't going to instill trust or earn any clicks.
2. Browse Unanswered Questions
We never said that this would be a five-minute job.
The truth is that it will take time to find the right questions to answer, and that will require some browsing.
Using industry keywords, search questions within your niche and see which ones you can answer.
To really hit the jackpot, make sure the questions have these key features:
- More followers on the question than answers (this means people are very interested and awaiting answers)
- Many answers that aren't helpful, or solely focus on self promotion (it's a prime opportunity to swoop in with a real answer)
- An emotional or controversial topic (these may get more viewers)
When you find questions that hit all of these points, click on the three dots in the corner and select "Answer Later."
This gives you the opportunity to collect all the best questions, and then devote time to answering them later on.
Here's another pro tip: Try to find questions that you can answer by borrowing information from blog posts and articles you've already written.
Using information you've already written means you'll spend less time researching, and you'll already have a link to include in your answer that's useful to the reader. Just make sure each answer is unique!
The more time you spend on this search step, the more targeted questions you'll find and the better results you'll receive for your effort.
3. Follow Your Niche Topics
Wouldn't it be great to see new questions right in your Quora feed or even directly delivered to your inbox?
Well, following topics within your niche actually gives you this ability.
To find the right topics, start by reading. Read as much as you can. Research and read the questions and answers that are related to both general and very specific topics within your niche.
(Tip: Don't think of it as time spent on social media work alone—this can give you tons of valuable ideas and insights for keyword research and content creation.)
This research will show you which topics on Quora have more followers, which ones have more activity and which of these high-activity topics house your target audience. You'll also see related topics on the side, giving you even ideas for topics to follow.
You'll probably start to find that many questions are answered by top writers within those niches. Follow these writers, and check out which topics they're following to get more ideas.
Once you've followed a few good topics, they'll appear under your profile under Topics. If you bookmark the topics, you'll also see the top questions and answers pinned to your Home page when you log in.
You can then see top questions (and highly-followed questions that need answers) delivered directly to you at regular intervals.
4. Give Genuine Answers
When you're focused on providing genuinely helpful answers, you're able to better connect with your target audience.
In turn, that audience will be more likely to check out the backlinks that you provide, because they'll already have built up a certain degree of trust in you.
For example, this answer has over 2900 words (as well as a handful of images):
Another great thing that top writers do is to include images. Answers with images are more visually appealing, and are generally more useful to readers (which is the point).
To succeed in the quest for Quora backlinks, focus on making your answers as informative and engaging as possible for your target audience.
5. Provide Value Within Your Answers with Backlinks
After you've crafted a genuinely helpful answer, it's time to place that backlink.
Or is it?
Remember, placing a backlink to your website within your Quora answer is only a good idea if that link is specifically related to the question that was asked.
Check out how Neil Patel does this when answering a question about Google penalties:
While the original question asked what kind of mistakes lead to Google penalties, the link to an article about recovering from a Google penalty is a closely-related resource that provides additional information for the reader who's wondering about this. It's genuinely helpful.
In the same way, when you see that you have an article (or product) that specifically answers the person's question in even more detail than you gave in your answer, go ahead and link to it!
But, how should you introduce it?
6. Choose the Right Anchor Text to Show What Your Link Provides
"Check out this link for more information."
Who really clicks on that link?
Why should they?
The best way to encourage people to actually click on your backlink is to give them a reason for doing so in the anchor text.
- "This article shows 5 more ways that you can..."
- "If you're looking for a way to [insert verb], this article has some easy steps to follow."
- "This product is actually designed to do just that. You can click here to check out 3 ways it helps you..."
- "I've written extensively on my experience with [topic] here..."
Check out how Danielle Russell does this at the end of her answer to the question "Will SEO die?"
When you're specific in your introduction of the link, people will be more likely to click through.
Conclusion: Making Quora Backlinks Work for You
Placing backlinks in your Quora answers is a great way to build awareness of your website or brand, balance out your backlink profile with healthy nofollow links, generate new dofollow backlinks, boost referral traffic and encourage conversions.
However, these benefits will only come if you focus on really answering questions first and placing backlinks second. Crafting truly valuable answers will build trust in your expertise (and your brand), thus leading to a higher CTR.
And the more you post, the better this gets.