Unlike the US Declaration of Independence, when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO), not all links are created equal. In fact, some are virtually useless in building your PageRank (PR) – Google’s way of ranking websites.

PR is a measurement for a website’s influence or priority. The higher the PR, the more powerful it is. The lower the PR, the less powerful it is … or the less “Google Juice.”
Found: SEO Be Discovered By Those Who Matter

The goal is to find relevant inbound links to build your PageRank. There are essentially two types to of relevant links to pay attention to —

  1. topically relevant links
  2. rel=”follow” links

Topically Relevant Links

Topically relevant links are links that pertain to the same content as your website. Remember that Google’s goal is to display websites that are relevant to a search term.

Therefore, if you’re a photographer, try to get links from photography related
websites. It won’t help much if you have links from a bicycle shop.

bike with wine

Rel=”follow” Links

A rel=”follow” link is a link that tells Google or search engines that said website vouches for the destination website. By default, all links are this type, even if not specified.

People add a “nofollow” code for two reasons. First, people might not want to share their PR, so they will put a special code in their links that tell search engines to not follow or share their Google Juice.

Second, people might be unsure of the link’s destination site. A link to a website with negative elements (e.g., porno website) may lead to a banning of your website from search results, so “stranger danger!” Ultimately, a link is considered a vote or vouch, so be wary.

i voted foursquare

An example of a “nofollow” code would look like the following:

<a href=”http://www.yourwebsite.com” rel=”nofollow”>Link</a>

The rel=”nofollow” tag in the link code does not transfer any PR. This is important to consider for yourself when linking to others. If you do not want to share your Google Juice or are unsure of the destination site’s integrity, add that code in your HTML.

To see whether someone put a “nofollow” tag on links, you have to view the source code for the website. To do so, right click in the browser and hit “view source.”

Source code is the raw content of a website. Next, search the link you’re examining and see if there is a “nofollow” tag in the code (like aforementioned).

view page source

It’s critical to consider this when trying to increase backlinks. Gaining nofollow links does not help you with PR. Facebook, for example, has a nofollow tag in all of their outbound links. So, it’s fruitless to get any links from them if you’re trying to increase your PR.

Similarly, Pinterest adds a nofollow tag in their links. It doesn’t mean that they’re not worth investing time into. Traffic is still traffic.

traffic road rage

All in all, do your research and spend your time wisely when building links!

Be found,

Lawrence

Other SEO articles:

Learn how I got into SEO. It starts with a story of how I shot cats and then weddings.
Oh the memories …🙂

Chapter 1: From Cats to Weddings
Chapter 2: Riding High On Referrals
Chapter 3: TheKnot Frenzy
Chapter 4: Searching For Myself

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