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How Best to Check Back Links for Google?

Google doesn't show all it's backlinks.

5:55 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I am researching keywords to use for my next site, and am a little confused by the whole backlinks things...

Ok I have heard that MSN or yahoo or alltheweb are the best places to check for backlinks. This confuses me though.

Say my priority is Google, I don't understand how finding backlinks in MSN or yahoo, etc is similar.

Bascally I am checking the top 3 for my home page and 5 main pages, at google. So I copy into notepad the keyword, and the top 3 results listed in Google for that keyword without quotes. I then go in and check backlinks to see how many.

Anyways, the only thing I can think of in using MSN, Yahoo, or Allthe web is because if a site is ranked well in Google, it is probably going to be ranked somewhere in these other 3 SE's. And since they show more backlinks, we use them. Is this the reasoning?

If not can someone explain this to me in Layman's terms? This is one of the few things I feel that I don't have an ok grasp on in SEO.

All the Best,