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Link :: Search Commands

The link search engine command is one of the most commonly used. Google makes it clear that links are akin to votes and used to help determine search engine rankings. A web site with more links to it is more likely to be listed higher up in Google's search results. The search engines Live Search and Yahoo also use links in this way although the importance of links ebbs and flows as the engines update their algorithms.

Link :: the Google search command

Synposis: List pages which link to a page
Sample search: Backlinks for www.searchcommands.com

The term "backlinks" is used to describe those links from external sites which point to the page in question. These links are also known as "Inbound Links" or "IBLs". "Outbound Links" or "OBLs" are links from your site to other sites. The search engine optimisation world places great emphasis on increasing the number of backlinks a site enjoys because Google's conceptual model uses backlinks as votes. In general terms, a site with more backlinks is more of an authority than a site with fewer backlinks. Not all backlinks are of equal importance. In Google the phrase "B.O." is used for "Backlink Obsession" as a humorous reference for webmasters and optimisers who fixate on gaining links. Google's use of the link command omits the "http" protocol.

Link :: the Yahoo search command

Synposis: List pages which link to a page
Sample search: Backlinks for www.arhg.net

Yahoo includes the http protocol in the link command, link:http://www.searchcommands.com, and this allows users to count and contrast links to page via specific protocols. For example, the difference between links to http://www.searchcommands.com and https://www.searchcommands.com. In addition and unlike Google, Yahoo allows users to use the link: command with the site: command and count the number of purely external links. For example: link:http://www.bbc.co.uk -site:http://www.bbc.co.uk.

Link :: the Live search command

Synposis: List pages which link to a page
Sample search: Backlinks for www.google.com

Live Search does not require the 'http' protocol in the link command (unlike Yahoo), but it can be used if desired. For example, the difference between links to http://www.searchcommands.com and https://www.searchcommands.com. Live Search allows users to use the link: command with the site: command and count the number of purely external links. For example: link:www.searchcommands.com -site:http://www.searchcommands.com.