The Right Way To Do Internal Linking For Ranking Boost
Internal linking is crucial to SEO success, yet it either receives no attention or done improperly.
According to Google, the number of internal links pointing to a page is a signal to search engines about the relative importance of that page.
In addition, having effectively distributed internal links across your website helps you establish a solid structure, making it easy for search engines to crawl and index your pages.
In this post, you will learn how to properly do internal linking to increase your website’s ranking on Google, Bing and other search engines.
What is An Internal Link?
Internal links are links that point from one page to another page on the same domain (website). Unlike backlinks, you’re completely in control of where your internal links are placed and what pages they are linked to within your website.
Internal links are useful for three reasons:
- They allow users to easily navigate a website
- They help establish information hierarchy for your website
- They help distribute link equity or ranking power around the given website
Why Is Internal Links Important For SEO?
Search engines like Google use internal links to help discover new content on websites. Google bots or spiders crawl websites regularly to find new web content and then index them in their large pool indices. To achieve this, they need access to a crawlable link structure which serves as the pathway for them to understand how your website is structured.
Ensuring that your pages are logically linked and knitted together makes it easy for search engines to access your content and get your pages listed in the search engine’s indices.
Conversely, if you publish a new page or blog post and forget to link to it from elsewhere or link it to another page on your site, then Google may not know it exists.
Also, proper internal links improve the flow of PageRank or ranking power around your site. This is very important. Generally speaking, the more internal links a page has, the higher its ability to rank. However, it’s not about quality; the quality of the links is also extremely important. This also means using the right, keyword-rich anchor text and linking to relevant pages. More discussion on this shortly.
SEO Best Practices For Doing Internal Linking
Link to Important Pages
It’s important to bear in mind that you’re not doing internal linking because it’s part of formality that goes into publishing a new page.
Instead, you’re spreading PageRank, and you have to ensure this link authority is spread to all your important pages. Doing so will help your pages to rank better in Google and other search engines.
To find relevant pages to like from, you can try a “site:” search.
Let’s say you’ve published an article about “local SEO” and you want to give it a boost. You can start by searching in Google with this search operator: site: yourdomain.com “keyword or phrase related to page”
Google will return pages that you can possibly link to that page.
Use Keyword-rich anchor text
Anchor texts are visible texts on a page with clickable hyperlinks attached to them. This is the part that users click on when reading your content. It’s commended to use descriptive and keyword-rich anchor text when doing internal linking. This helps users and Google understand what the page you’re linking to is about.
For example, you just finished writing a blog post about On-page SEO and somewhere in the article you want your audience to understand what “Image SEO” means. To do this, you can link to another page on your site that fully discusses image SEO by ensuring that your anchor text contains relevant keywords.
Unlike backlinks, internal links could have exact match anchor texts. Google has said that using lots of exact match anchor text in internal links will not “typically” affect your website.
Avoid Using The Same Anchor Text For Two Different Pages
Although Google has continued to develop sophisticated algorithms to solve problems arising from semantics, sometimes the search engine can have trouble differentiating two pages with related topics.
Let’s say you have two articles on your site. One is about guest posting. And the other is about how to look for prospects for guest posting.
You observe that “guest posting” is central to both blog posts. To avoid confusion, it’s advisable to use different anchor text for each article when referring to them in your new blog post.
Avoid Orphan Pages On Your Site
An orphan page is a website page that is not linked to or from another page of your website. Google won’t be able to find orphan pages unless you submit your sitemap via Google Search Console or the pages receive backlinks from crawled pages on other websites.
But this is not a chance you want to take.
You can use link building like Ahrefs or Moz Pro to locate linkless pages on your website.
To conduct the search on Ahrefs, for example, head to Site Audit > Links > Issues tab > Orphan page.
Once you locate the pages, you can start linking them to relevant pages to ensure flow of link equity around your website.
Conduct Regular Internal link Audit With Google Search Console
Google Search Console comes with an amazing feature called “Links”. From there, you can see how your site’s internal links are distributed and set up. It shows you the pages with the most internal links and how much each has.
Ideally, your important pages, such as homepage, core service pages, landing pages and “contact us” pages should be your priority pages. In a situation where most of your internal links are going to less important pages, you may need to start focusing on redirecting links to your high-priority pages.
It’s recommended you do an internal link audit once or twice a year.
Automated Internal Linking
Internal linking isn’t difficult. You simply need to set up a logical, hierarchical site structure and guide your internal linking to follow that structure. You should always remember to strategically link from your high authority pages to those that need more SEO boost.
If you’re a WordPress user and need an automated plugin organizing your internal linking, Link Whisper could be a great choice for you. Designed using the most sophisticated technology, Link Whisper helps you speed up the process of internal linking, enhance the relevance score of your important pages, and improve your chances of ranking higher on Google. Visit their official website to learn more.
Brooks Internet Marketing
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