Outreach Monks

8 Crucial Link Building KPIs: Are You Tracking Them All?

Link Building KPIs

Have you ever wondered how to tell if your website is really making a splash on the internet? Imagine your website is like a soccer team. 

Just like you keep score in a game, you need to keep track of specific numbers, or “KPIs,” to see if you’re winning online. KPI stands for Key Performance Indicator.

These are like the goals, assists, and saves that show how well your website is doing. Today, we’re diving into 8 crucial Link Building KPIs that you absolutely must be paying attention to. 

Are you tracking them all? Stick around to find out if you’re missing any and how to up your game!

What is KPI?

KPI stands for “Key Performance Indicator”. It is a type of performance measurement that businesses and organizations use to track the effectiveness of various functions and processes. 

The primary purpose of KPIs is to provide a clear and measurable target against which actual performance can be compared.

Why Link Building KPIs Matter?

Building a robust online presence is like constructing a house, with each link as a foundational brick. However, not all bricks – or links – are created equal. 

Some strengthen your online ‘house’, while others weaken it. Link Building KPIs are the essential tools that ensure your structure is solid and standout.

By tracking these KPIs, you can:

  • Understand which links are the most valuable. 
  • Spot any weak links that might not be helping, or could even be causing harm. 
  • Measure your growth over time. You’d want to see more and better links pointing to your website.

8 Essential Link Building KPIs You Need to Track

Link building is a pivotal component of SEO strategies. To measure its success, it’s essential to track specific link building KPIs. These indicators provide insights into the success of your outreach efforts, the quality of acquired links, and the impact on organic traffic. Dive deeper to understand these metrics.

8 Essential Link Building KPIs

1. Number of Referring Domains

When websites link to you, think of it as a nod of approval. But it’s not just about how many nods you get. It’s about how many different websites (or domains) give you that nod.

  • Diverse Approval: If many different websites link to you, it’s a sign that your content is valuable.
  • Trust Factor: Search engines like Google see this diversity as a sign of trustworthiness.

2. Anchor Text Distribution

In a library, labels help guide readers to the topics they’re interested in. Likewise, on the internet, anchor text acts as these labels, guiding users to relevant content. Anchor text is the clickable text in a link. It’s like a label telling what’s on the other side.

  • Natural Variety: Too many identical or very similar labels can look suspicious. It’s good to have a mix.
  • Relevance: The anchor text should relate to the content it links to.

3. Domain and Page Authority

Domain and Page Authority

Think of your favorite teacher grading your project. You’d want the best grade, right? Similarly, websites too have a grading system. The higher the grade, the more trusted the site is.

  • Authority Check: This KPI lets you know your website’s grade or authority.
  • Impactful Links: Getting links from high-authority sites can boost your own grade.

4. Link Acquisition Rate

Imagine you’re planting a garden. You’d want to see flowers blooming at a steady rate, showing the garden’s health. In the same way, the rate at which your site gets new links reflects its digital health. This tells you the speed at which you’re gaining or losing links.

  • Steady Growth: A consistent gain is a positive sign, showing your content remains relevant.
  • Red Flags: A sudden drop can signal problems needing attention.

5. Link Type (Dofollow vs. Nofollow)

Links come with ‘dofollow’ or ‘nofollow’ tags. While ‘dofollow’ links pass on ranking power and are highly valuable for SEO. ‘Nofollow’ links tell search engines not to consider the link for rankings. However, ‘nofollow’ links can still drive traffic and add natural variety to your link profile.

  • Balance is Key: A mix of both link types can be healthy for your site’s profile.
  • Quality Over Quantity: It’s not always about how many, but the type.

6. Geographical Link Distribution

Geographical Link Distribution

Where are your links coming from? Different parts of the world or just one place? Links from diverse geographical locations can broaden your website’s appeal and reach.

  • Global Recognition: Links from diverse locations show global appreciation of your content.
  • Localized Popularity: Concentrated links might indicate strong regional influence.

7. Percentage of Links From Relevant Sites

It’s great to get links, but are they from sites related to your content? So, if you’re in the health industry, links from fitness, wellness, or medical sites are more valuable than those from unrelated niches.

  • Relevance Matters: Links from related sites show that experts in your field value your content.
  • Contextual Fit: Such links can be more beneficial than random ones.

8. Lost and Broken Backlinks

The digital world is dynamic. Websites get updated, or pages get deleted, leading to broken links. Regularly monitoring and fixing these ensures your website remains accessible and user-friendly.

  • Stay Alert: Monitoring these helps in maintaining the health of your site’s backlink profile.
  • Mend and Move: Fixing broken links or reaching out for replacements can keep your website sturdy.

Remember, understanding these KPIs is just the start. What’s even more crucial is how you act on this knowledge. Keep reading, and we’ll dive into how to master each one and truly make your website shine!

5 Advanced Tools to Track These KPIs

5 Advanced Tools to Track KPIs

In the digital landscape, having the right tools is as crucial as having the right skills. While understanding KPIs is essential, tracking them requires specialized tools. Here are five advanced tools that every link builder should consider:

1. SEMrush

When it comes to a one-stop-shop for SEO tools, SEMrush often tops the list. It’s like a Swiss Army knife for digital marketers, giving a wealth of insights and functionalities. A comprehensive SEO tool that offers a plethora of features beyond just link tracking.



  • Backlink Analysis: Get a detailed view of your website’s backlink profile.
  • Anchor Text Insights: Understand how your site is being linked by other websites.
  • Lost Backlink Tracking: Identify which links you’ve lost over time to optimize your strategy.

2. Ahrefs

Imagine having a telescope that lets you explore the vast universe of backlinks. Ahrefs is just that telescope for SEO enthusiasts. Renowned for its vast index of live backlinks, Ahrefs provides an in-depth analysis of your site’s link profile.



  • Referring Domains Analysis: See which unique domains are linking to you.
  • Domain and Page Authority Metrics: Gain insights into the quality of websites linking to you.
  • Link Growth or Decline Over Time: Monitor the rate at which you acquire or lose backlinks.

3. Moz Pro

In the SEO world, Moz is often hailed as a reliable teacher, constantly offering updated insights and tools. A trusted name in the SEO community, Moz Pro offers an array of tools to optimize your link-building efforts.



  • Link Explorer: Dive deep into your backlink research.
  • Domain Authority & Page Authority Scoring: Understand the “strength” of any website or page.
  • Spam Score: Identify potentially harmful backlinks that might penalize your site.

 4. Majestic SEO

Navigating the ocean of backlinks requires a precise compass, and Majestic SEO offers just that. Known for its specialized focus on link-building metrics, Majestic provides unique data sets for SEO professionals.



  • Trust Flow and Citation Flow Metrics: Gauge the trustworthiness and influence of linking sites.
  • Historical Backlink Data: Understand how your backlink profile has evolved over time.
  • Topical Trust Flow: See which topics or niches are predominantly linking to you.

5. BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo is like the radar system for content marketers, constantly scanning the horizon for potential opportunities. While primarily known for content analysis, BuzzSumo also offers valuable link data.



  • Backlink Analysis for Any Domain or URL: Identify who’s linking to your competitors or any site of interest.
  • Most Shared Content: Discover popular content in your niche, which can guide your link-building strategy.
  • Influencer Identification: Find top voices in your industry for potential outreach and collaboration.

Remember, while these tools offer valuable insights, it’s how you interpret and act on this data that determines your link-building success.

How to Improve on Link Building KPI?

Boosting your link-building KPIs requires strategic focus:

  • Quality First: Aim for backlinks from authoritative sites rather than accumulating numerous low-quality links.
  • Diverse Anchor Text: Mix up your anchor texts for a natural link profile.
  • Stay Updated: Keep abreast of the latest SEO trends.
  • Network: Forge genuine relationships in your industry for quality backlink opportunities.

Consistency and patience are key to seeing improvement.


Navigating the vast world of link-building can feel like a maze. But with the right markers, like the KPIs we’ve explored, the path becomes clearer. Remember, it’s not just about collecting links, but about forging connections that count. 

Use the advanced tools suggested to keep an eagle eye on your progress. And as you refine your strategies, you’re not just boosting numbers, but enhancing your digital presence. Stay persistent, stay updated, and watch your website rise to its full potential. Every link is a step forward. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What are link building KPIs?

Link building KPIs are metrics used to assess the quality, quantity, and impact of backlinks pointing to a website, helping marketers refine their link-building strategies for better search engine performance.

Why are link building KPIs important for SEO?

Link building KPIs provide insights into a site's backlink health, ensuring links are valuable and trustworthy. Monitoring these KPIs ensures a balanced backlink profile, which significantly influences search engine rankings.

What's the difference between Domain Authority and Page Authority as KPIs?

Domain Authority gauges the overall trustworthiness and importance of an entire website, while Page Authority assesses the credibility of a specific page. Both influence a site's ability to rank in search results.

Is a higher Link Acquisition Rate always better?

Not necessarily. While a steady growth indicates increasing popularity, a sudden spike may look unnatural to search engines and could result in penalties. It's crucial to gain links at a natural pace.

What are dofollow and nofollow links in Link Type KPI?

Dofollow links pass SEO authority from one site to another, influencing rankings. Nofollow links, while not passing authority, can still drive traffic and provide context to search engines about content relevance.

Ekta Chauhan

Ekta Chauhan

Ekta is a seasoned link builder at Outreach Monks with six years in the digital marketing trenches, specializing in the SaaS niche. Professionally, she’s a wizard at navigating multiple niches with finesse. On the personal side, despite her calm and quiet nature, don't be fooled—Ekta's creativity means she’s probably plotting to take over the world.


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