Internal Link SEO plays a vital role in website SEO audit where we check how effectively you have used internal links within your website post and page.
These links help in easy navigation of visitor and search crawler within your website.
What is an Internal Link SEO?
Most SEO analyses will alert you to include internal links if you don’t already have them. An internal link is basically any link connecting two pages of your own website. These allow users to navigate your site and search engines to rank it better. If a page is not internally linked, it will not show up when crawler bots search the internet and scan your site for results.
Internal linking guides users to relevant content on your site. This not only makes it better accessible to your readers but also, enables SEO to assess the value of your content. The more links a webpage gets, the more relevant it is to search engines.
Best Internal Link SEO Building Practices
Having a clear and straightforward strategy for internal linking can prove to be a catalyst for your website’s success. We should model our internal link structure around categories to optimize user traffic and indexing. Here are a few things to keep in mind while building an internal link structure:
The ideal distance: Less than 3 clicks away!
Anyone surfs or scanning your website should be able to reach any page within 3 clicks. The idea is to structure your content cohesively using categories and sub-categories. In this way, any webpage that a user wants is never too deep to dig out.
We can base subcategories on time, themes, creators, etc. For example, if a user wants to read an article published in October 2018, they don’t have to scroll all the way down but can instead click on the internal link of the year and month to look for their desired content.
Key metrics: Usefulness and relevance
Streamlining navigation is the key. You cannot have a dozen dormant links on your page because that makes for bad SEO marking. You can prevent this by closely tracking your links and flow to the webpages they land on. The activity and the number of your internal links also alert the crawler bots to the importance you attach to your webpages. Thus, only create links to webpages that will be useful and relevant to your users.
When you use the same anchor text for multiple webpage landings, you are creating competition between your own webpages for traffic. For example, if the anchor text “Books” leads to one webpage listing popular book titles but you have another link “Books” for a different webpage, it will confuse the users and search bots. Use different anchor texts for every link in order to create a clear and hassle-free navigation system.
Avoid linking nonsense to your website. Rel=”nofollow” was the most prevalent way of PageRank sculpting before Google brought in measures to stop it. User-generated data and orphan pages should be avoided at all costs. Gather, organize and re-distribute your content and link structure by keeping the user at the center.
Importance of Internal Link SEO:
While the homepage of any website is more likely to get the most traffic, it does not imply that other pages of the website cannot be utilized as an SEO vantage point. This is where internal links come in. Here are some important aspects it influences:
Your user is your ultimate audience, the one you should aim to please from the get-go. Internal linking ensures a satisfying experience to the user. Concrete internal linking serves as a navigator for the user, guiding them down useful and relevant paths and also giving them directions for whatever they are looking for.
You cannot stow away your most important content on random pages of your website and then leave it up to fate for the reader to make the discovery. SEO rewards user-friendly behavior. You want your website to have a logical structure that can guide the user to webpages you attach importance to.
SERP crawler bots also assess websites based on internal link structure and flow value. When you have a logical and intricate structure of internal links, it generates and guides traffic, ranking your webpages better. Poor Internal Linked page will not show up as results and if they have too many links that are defunct, the bots will grade it adversely.
It’s about small things:
A poor SEO analysis can tank even the best content strategy. The foremost goal is to provide valuable content to the user in easy ways. Internal linking and fool-proof structures can make navigation a hundred times better. Little aspects such as categorization, navigation bars, header, and footer can save the user mindless scrolling and make their experience better.
Internal Links Vs External Links:
External links direct its users to one of your webpages. These links land on your website and serve as certificates of relevance and importance. It acts as word-of-mouth publicity and builds authority. It helps you establish your reputation as a credible and reliable source of information. Thus, these have a much greater impact on rankings than internal links.
Often webmasters resort to manipulative practices in order to rank their page better, using misleading anchor texts to lead users to different pages. These are risky practices as both users and crawler bots are quick to notice such tactics and it reflects badly on the site’s credibility.
Search engine rankings:
Search Engine takes both external and internal links into account by crawler bots for search engines. But while external links can help you build credibility and brand image, lacking internal links can lead to adverse rankings by SEO analysts and by extension hinder reach to the audience.
Quality, not quantity:
It is not advisable to stock up a lot of links on a single page. The SEO analyses link to flow value, meaning that if a link is not being clicked, it makes for bad ranking. It is much more beneficial to keep only links important to the users. Page Rank sculpting may have become obsolete now, but the SEO friendly theories we based it on is still very much functional.
Concluding Remarks Internal Link SEO:
Internal link SEO form an integral part of your website. A cohesive internal link structure accords your website authority, reliability and prestige. The anchor text, location of the link on a webpage, the flow value to the page, all bear the way your site performs in SEO analysis and can affect your rankings. While there are ways to manipulate internal link structures to make them benefit your website but are risky strategies. Search engines have preventive measures and filters in place to spot these tricks and filter such websites from their results. It is thus more efficient and effective to create links to content that both you as a creator and your users find important and relevant.