What is UGC Link Attribute?

UGC stands for user-generated content. It signals search engines that the link on the page is user-generated.

But how does it help you in SEO? This article will discuss all about UGC links, including the following:

  • Importance of links in SEO
  • Definition of UGC attribute
  • What is the difference between nofollow, sponsored, and UGC attributes?

What is the UGC link attribute?

The UGC attribute informs Google that the link has been embedded in user-generated content. This link attribute works quite similarly to the nofollow attribute.

As Google altered how the nofollow attribute functioned in 2019, they introduced UGC and sponsored link attribute.

These attributes were created to aid Google in better understanding how users link to various websites. They refer to comments, forum posts, or any other areas on a website where users can add content, and they inform Google that users contributed the content.

Importance of Links in SEO

Link building is essential in the SEO world. If your pages don't have links, Google might not find them or might not consider them important.

Search engines consider links to other websites as "votes" for the page you are linking to.

Sites that receive numerous such "votes" from reputable and authoritative websites may rank better in the search results. In turn, these links become more authoritative and trustworthy.

Thus, it would help to always consider the kinds of content, marketing, and PR in your SEO strategy to persuade other websites to link to you.

Yet many dishonest marketers soon discovered that they could quickly gain hundreds of connections to their pages by doing one of the following:

  • posting spam comments on other blogs,
  • purchasing links from web admins,
  • using advertising links, and
  • inserting links on any website that permitted user-submitted content.

To prevent this, Google created the nofollow attribute in 2005. By applying this attribute to your links, they will have nofollow tags and not count as votes.

Using the nofollow tag also indicates that paid links, such as advertisements, and paid or sponsored links shouldn't affect search engine rankings.

SEOLeverage™️ has link services that offer high-quality backlinks to further improve your rankings and site domain authority.

The Difference Between Nofollow, Sponsored, and UGC attributes

To better understand the difference between these link attributes, here is what a regular link looks like:

<a href= "https://example.com">Link text</a> 

Search engines will crawl and index regular or default links. These can also impact your rankings.

The comparison of the three link attributes is illustrated below.

UGC<a href="http://www.example.com/" rel="UGC">Link text</a>
NoFollow<a href="http://www.example.com/" rel="nofollow">Link text</a>
Sponsored<a href="http://www.example.com/" rel="sponsored">Link text</a>

UGC Link Attribute

UGC was helpful for web admins who were having trouble indicating that certain hyperlinks were not authorized.

Any links placed in designated user-generated content parts of websites should be marked with the UGC rel attribute. However, Google guidelines have an exemption for links contributed by trustworthy contributors.

This attribute may be removed from links uploaded by members or users who consistently provide high-quality contributions.

Additionally, the UGC tag is frequently automatically added to blog comments by modern CMS systems.

NoFollow Link Attribute

When you don't want Google to crawl, index, or analyze a link that points to your website, you can use the nofollow attribute to stop Google from doing so.

Nofollow links are perfect for marking up any pages on your website that you don't want to be crawled and any contributor content with unauthorized links.

According to Google's 2020 update, nofollow links would be utilized as a "hint" for crawling and indexing. Links include valuable data that can be used to enhance search.

Also, looking closely at all the links may help Google recognize inappropriate linking patterns. Switching to a hint approach keeps this crucial information and permits site owners to specify which links shouldn't be seen as first-party endorsements.

Using a nofollow attribute to internal links is also beneficial.

Sponsored Link Attribute

The sponsored attribute should be used to distinguish links that are particularly paid placements, such as sponsored placements, paid links, and advertorials.

The initiation of the sponsored link attribute now allows sponsored links to be categorically identified as such. This attribute helps Google to differentiate advertising from untrustworthy.

It can be challenging for your website to rank without the help of links and link attributes. SEOLeverage™️ can plan your SEO strategy, including keyword research, link building, and content writing.

Is UGC Significant for SEO?

UGC links do not significantly impact the SEO ranking of a website. Nonetheless, it is advised to apply this attribute to all user-generated links on your website like the following:

  • reviews,
  • comments,
  • forums posts, and other similar content

Google understands the purpose of such links if the UGC attribute is present on the linked page. They can use it to determine whether they should be considered when ranking pages.

Links in comments are frequently spammy links connected to black hat SEO. Using the UGC tag is an excellent idea to prevent your site from being penalized for having unnatural external comment links. It is also okay to use the nofollow tag on these links.

Can You Combine Attributes?

Although each rel attribute describes a different kind of link, mixing multiple values in a single link is possible.

One link may have both the sponsored and nofollow attributes, for example:

<a href="https://www.example.com" rel="nofollow sponsored">example link</a>

It is excellent practice to use the nofollow attribute in addition to the sponsored and UGC attributes because not all search engines support the two more recent attributes.

Tips on Using UGC, Sponsored, and NoFollow Links

The following tips will help site owners manage the new attributes.

  • Use a mix of the new attributes as appropriate.
  • Use nofollow or a combination of nofollow and sponsored attributes for paid links.
  • No markup adjustments are necessary if ads or sponsored links currently use the nofollow tags, although Google advises switching future link components when practical.

Link Building Optimize SEO Results

Link building is one of the easiest and most efficient approaches to increasing rankings.

To rank websites in SERPs, Google actually considers both the quantity and quality of backlinks. Your brand identity will be strengthened, and conversions will grow due to improved rankings.

Knowing how to use nofollow, sponsored and UGC links, and sponsored links to your advantage can help increase website traffic.

Use link building to optimize your search engine ranking. SEOLeverage™️ can help you boost your rankings by creating a personalized SEO plan.