What Is a Good Number of Referring Domains?

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The amount of referring domains that you use to link to your website is crucial to the success of your online marketing strategy. Many people think that the more links you have, the more traffic your site will get, but it is not always true. 

It is not always the best idea to create backlinks on websites that have no relevance to your topic. There are other factors that you should consider, such as contextual placement, which will help your site achieve more search engine results.

Ideal Number of Referring Domains for Your Business

When it comes to determining a good number of referring domains for your business, it’s important to understand that there is no one-size-fits-all answer. The ideal number will depend on the specific goals and objectives of your business.

This graph by Ahrefs will give you a better idea of what number you should aim for your business. Generally speaking, if you have around 40 referring domains, you will have around 5000 visitors a month, which you can then convert to leads for your business.

For instance, if your primary goal is to increase brand awareness, then having a large number of referring domains from reputable sources may be more important. On the other hand, if your main objective is to drive sales and conversions, then a smaller number of referring domains from high-converting sources may be more beneficial. 

The key is to understand your business goals and then measure the effectiveness of your content and SEO efforts in achieving those goals.

It’s worth noting that having a high number of referring domains is not always an indicator of a successful website, as the quality and relevance of these domains also play a crucial role.

Relevance of Your Referring Domains

This will help you drive more traffic to your target web pages. It can also help you improve your marketing strategy.

One of the most important factors that Google considers when determining the relevance of a backlink is the contextual placement of the link. When you do this, you will be able to improve your position in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) and increase your audience’s trust in your brand. 

SERPs stands for Search Engine Results Pages. When a user enters a query into a search engine, the search engine returns a list of web pages that it believes are relevant to the user’s query. These pages are presented in a list format, and are commonly referred to as the search engine results pages or SERPs.

The backlink profile of a site can be a very difficult metric to measure. There are no industry-wide benchmarks for measuring this, which means that it’s extremely hard to determine whether or not your website’s links are relevant. 

You may want to check your link profile on a site like Ahrefs, which will let you see how many referring domains you have and how they are rated. 

Competitor Analysis

Once you have your backlink profile, you can compare it to that of your competitor. Having more referring domains than your competitor is an ideal number to have, and it’s a great way to boost your ranking.

Content Matters

Another way to increase your referring domains is to create content that is valuable and relevant to your audience. To do this, you can make use of SEO techniques such as Rank Math. These strategies will help you create high-quality content that Google loves.

What Is High Quality Content?

In the context of SEO, quality content refers to web pages that provide valuable and informative information that is relevant to the user’s query. Quality content is characterized by several key attributes:


Quality content is directly relevant to the user’s query and provides the information that the user is looking for.


Quality content is informative, useful, and provides value to the user. It is not only focused on keywords but also on providing comprehensive information to the user.


Quality content is original and not duplicated from other sources. It should be written with a distinct voice and perspective that sets it apart from other content on the same topic.


Quality content should be easy to read and understand, and it should be formatted in a way that makes it easy for users to scan and consume.


Quality content should be accurate, well-researched, and properly sourced.

Search engines aim to provide the best possible results to their users, therefore they tend to give higher rankings to web pages that have quality content. 

Pay Attention to Anchor Text

As you build your content, keep in mind that the quality of the links surrounding your articles plays a major role in the relevance of your links. 

In particular, anchor text can be one of the most important cues from a page, especially when you’re trying to optimize your content for search engines.

Anchor text is the visible, clickable text in a hyperlink that is used to link one webpage to another. It is the text that is underlined and appears in a different color than the surrounding text, indicating that it is a link. 

Anchor text is used to help search engines understand the content of the linked page and how it relates to the linking page. This information is used by search engines to determine the relevance and authority of the linked page, which can affect its ranking in search results.

When you are analyzing your competitor’s backlink profile, you can find ways to make your link profile more appealing to the linkers. For example, you can create original content that can be distributed to reach a wider audience.

Aside from writing good content, you can also gain more referring domains by guest posting. Writing a blog post on a blog website with a high authority is one of the best ways to get backlinks.

How to Find Referring Domains

A referring domain is a traffic source that sends signals to search engines and online users. This can be useful for gaining SEO ranking and visibility. However, not all referring domains produce the same results.

You can find the best referring domains by evaluating them against your current backlinks and using prospecting tools to discover sites that are highly relevant to your industry.

One example of a referring domain is a website that aims to provide visitors with a guide to a particular topic. While this may not be a traditional backlink, it is still a valuable link.

Another reputable referring domain is a general directory or press release distribution service. These types of domains are especially useful for law firms.

Here are some more ideas that you can use to find referring domains:

Guest Blogging

Reach out to other websites that cover similar topics and offer to write a guest blog post. In exchange, you can include a link to your website in your author bio or within the body of the post.

Directory Listings

Submit your website to relevant directories and industry-specific directories.

Online Communities and Forums

Participate in online communities and forums relevant to your niche and include a link to your website in your forum signature or in your profile.

Partner with Other Websites

Reach out to other websites in your industry and propose a partnership. You could exchange links, co-create content, or offer a service to each other’s audience.

Press Releases

When you have newsworthy events or products, create press releases and submit them to online press release distribution services and to local media outlets.

Resource Pages

Look for resource pages on other websites that are relevant to your niche and reach out to the website owner to ask if they would be willing to include a link to your website on their resource page.


If you have worked with other companies or organizations, ask them if they would be willing to include a link to your website in a testimonial on their website.


Create infographics that are informative and shareable, then reach out to other websites and ask them to include your infographics on their website with a link back to your website.

Link Building Service

Reaching out to get backlinks by yourself can be a difficult and time-consuming process, as it necessitates searching for potential links, assessing the domain’s authority, and explaining your value proposition. It’s possible to pay for a list of potential backlinks from freelancers rather than doing the work yourself, but this may backfire if the links are not of high value.

A better option is working with a link-building company. These SEO companies will ensure that you receive beneficial links, as they will assess quality on your behalf and develop a content strategy that will add value for all parties involved. This can be a better option for those in niche fields where it may be difficult to find good links.

Quality of Linking Domains

Search engines also look at the quality of the website that links to you. If you are getting lots of links from a reputable source, that is a sign that your website is credible.

The quality of a linking domain refers to the level of authority, trustworthiness, and relevance of the website that is linking to your website. A high-quality linking domain is considered to be a reputable, trustworthy, relevant and authoritative website that has a strong presence on the web. 

For example, websites like Wikipedia, BBC, Harvard, etc. are among the highest ranking websites because relevant and authoritative  websites are those that are widely recognized as reputable sources of information and are frequently cited by other websites and media outlets.

Search engines use the quality of linking domains as a way to determine the relevance and authority of a website. Websites that have a large number of high-quality linking domains are generally considered to be more authoritative and trustworthy than those that have a small number of low-quality linking domains. 

This is why having high-quality linking domains is considered to be important for SEO and can help to improve a website’s visibility in search engine results.

Referring Domains Report

A referring domains report can be extremely helpful in determining what kind of a backlink profile you should be aiming for. 

A referring domain report is a tool or report that shows the number of unique domains that are linking to a website. These reports typically include information about the number of backlinks, the anchor text used in the links, and the total number of referring domains. 

A referring domain report is useful for analyzing the quality and quantity of backlinks to a website, and it can be used to identify patterns and trends in a website’s link profile.

You can get a premium referring domain report using various tools such as Ahrefs, SEMrush, Majestic and Moz, or for free at websites like SearchEngineReports

These tools analyze the backlinks of a website and provide detailed information on the linking domains. The report includes information such as the number of links, the anchor text used, the referring IP addresses, the linking pages and much more.

It will show you a comprehensive list of all the domains that connect back to your page. In addition, it will identify additional opportunities for link building.

Contextual Link Building

Contextual link building is a great way to create backlinks that are relevant to your audience. When you include relevant websites in your linking strategy, you will increase your brand awareness and gain exposure for your business.

Contextual link building is a process of acquiring hyperlinks from other websites to your own website, with the links being placed within the content of the linking page. These links are considered more valuable than links placed in other areas of a web page such as the header, sidebar or footer, because they are surrounded by relevant content.

When a link is placed in the context of the content, it provides more information about the linking page and the linked page, helping search engines to understand the relationship between them. This in turn can help search engines to determine the relevance and authority of the linked page, which can affect its ranking in search results.

Contextual links are considered more valuable than non-contextual links, such as those placed in the sidebar or footer of a website, because they are surrounded by relevant content. 

They tend to be more natural and less likely to be identified as manipulative by search engines. Contextual links can improve the user experience by providing additional information and resources that are relevant to the content they are reading.


There is no one-size-fits all answer to the question of “What is a good number of referring domains?” Every website will have different needs and objectives when it comes to link building and therefore need to consider their individual circumstances when deciding on how many referring domains they should target.

The most important thing to remember is that quality is always more important than quantity and to only focus on acquiring links from relevant and authoritative websites.

The most effective way to increase the number of referring domains your website has is to create great content that other websites are keen to link back to; putting effort into building relationships with those in your industry will provide you with the best chance of acquiring quality backlinks.

I'm Allison Dunn,

Your Business Executive Coach

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