In this new InfoBunny article we are talking about the benefits of internal linking and offer you some very easy-to-use internal linking strategies for better SEO.
Let’s get started!
What is an internal link?
An internal link is any link from one page on your website to another page on your website.
Search engines and site visitors use links to find content and for site navigation.
Internal links define the architecture and hierarchy of a website
If pages and posts have no internal links they are classed as orphaned content. They are difficult for search engines and for visitors to find.
Internal links are found in the menu and sidebars of sites.
Categories and tags also provide internal links and modern WordPress themes once set up correctly are very good at distributing internal links.
But they do not distribute contextual links and contextual links are vitally important for SEO.
Any post or page that doesn’t have a contextual link pointing to it is classed as orphaned content.
What are contextual links?
Contextual links are text links within the body of a page or post that links to another page or post.
They point to related content and are linked through anchor text within the content.
As you are reading this you will notice lots of contextual links pointing to related content on InfoBunny.
Why are contextual links important for SEO?
Internal links and more importantly contextual links are vital for SEO because they link related content together playing a major part in the discoverability of a site’s content.
Contextual links also pass juice around the site helping to inform search engines of the importance of a linked page.
The more internal links to a page then the more important that page is to the search engines. It is important to actively link to your best content.
Internal linking strategies for SEO
Create lots of articles
Create lots and lots of content particularly when starting a blog.
Creating lots of keyword-rich pages and posts allows you to add lots of internal links and build a really strong internal linking strategy that will yield results.
The more content you have the more of these beneficial SEO links you can place.
Use anchor text
Your internal links should use anchor text that is natural within the text paragraph.
It is very easy to over-optimize anchor text.
Just use very natural, unoptimized short sections of text as anchor text.
Don’t force in the exact match keywords unless it is natural to do so instead use synonyms of those words, but again it all has to look and feel natural.
Link deep within your site
You want to link as deep as you can into your site and avoid linking to top-level pages.
It is a mistake to link to your homepage from posts and pages and to a contact form for example.
It might seem like a good UX for your visitors to be linked to these pages but it’s a much better idea to say something like
“if you would like to get in touch you can find our contact form linked in the menu above”.
Remember one of the main reasons for internal linking is to pass juice around the site and tell Google about the important pages that you want them to notice.
Setting up lots of links to your contact form just gives you a contact form that ranks well.
Direct your visitors to your content and provide menu/footer links to your contact form, privacy page etc.
Use follow links
Follow links are the best way to build out the internal link architecture of your content marketing.
Using the rel=”nofollow” attribute was created by Google as a way for a link to not influence the link destinations influence. In other words, nofollow doesn’t pass any juice to the link destination and that is not what you are looking to achieve.
With a good internal linking strategy, we are looking to influence the importance of the pages we link to.
Nofollow should be used as a method to not pass on link juice to external sites, though again if you are linking to quality articles then it is advised that these links are followed.
You should really use nofollow when linking to homepages, products or when adding affiliate links.
If the links you add are paid for links then they should be marked ideally as rel=”sponsored” and user-generated content links, such as links found in bios, profiles and comments should be marked as rel=”UGC”.
Keep the number of links on a page to a reasonable number
The average blog post doesn’t really need to worry about the number of links per page.
Google guidelines simply say that you should have a reasonable number of links per page.
But how many are reasonable?
Google has indicated that they can crawl 100s of links per page but just because it would seem that you can add lots of links doesn’t mean that you should.
Remember all the links in the menu, sidebars, tags, categories, and so on count against the links on the page total.
The potential number of links on a page could be high before you start to add your SEO internal links
A visitor confronted with lots and lots of links on a page or post could easily get overwhelmed and that is not really a good UX.
Our best advice is to place as many internal links into a post as feels natural. Don’t overdo it.
Internal links need to be relevant to the page they link to
This should be common sense to site owners.
If you are writing a review about a bike and then link it to a car review then that’s not really the way to go.
Would someone reading your bike review be interested in the car review?
Probably not but if you change the link and point it to a review that you wrote about bike racks for cars then we have some relevance there.
The rule is simple, only link to content that carries information that is useful to the article you are linking from.
Don’t link pages and posts just for the sake of linking them.In this new InfoBunny article we are talking about the benefits of internal linking and offer you some very easy-to-use internal linking strategies for better SEO.Click To Tweet
Internal links need to be natural and add value to the page or post it is linking to.
You need to send visitors to pages that are related and help the visitor with their search intent.
When you are linking you are telling the visitor that this page is important and that they should visit it.
Contextual links are strong indicators to visitors and search engines that the linked content is really good.
Use good anchor text for your links that is natural and beds in well within a sentence.
Never force links into sentences.
Keep your content updated
We know that Google loves fresh new content so it just makes perfect sense to update old content and give it a fresh new look and feel.
The Update SEO Technique is the process of keeping your content up to date and this includes your internal links.
As you add new content new linking opportunities appear.
Update your content to take advantage of these link opportunities and give your SEO results a boost.
Internal linking strategies for SEO – Takeaways
It is very easy to forget about posts and pages when published and to just move onto the next piece of content.
But having an SEO internal linking strategy is vitally important for your site.
Internal links give a good user experience for your visitors. They keep people on your pages for longer and move them around the site. They send strong signals to the search engines that the content linked is high quality and they distribute link juice around the site.
And finally, they help with the discoverability of content by the search crawlers.
That’s all for now.
So do you have an internal linking strategy?
Have you seen improved search results from implementing your internal linking strategies?
Let us know in the comments section below or you can send us a message via our content form that is linked in the menu at the top of the page.