Creating internal links within your website is a straightforward strategy offered with most SEO services. Methods for internal linking are simple to implement and essential for your SEO success.
Search engines also use internal linking as a valuable tool. Internal links are used during website crawling by search engines.
Google finds your pages and posts more quickly when linked to another website. Internal links help Google understand the organization of your website by correlating your articles.
In this post, we'll tackle the following:
- Understanding internal links and their importance to search engines
- Benefits of internal linking
- Building an internal linking strategy, including tips and practices
What are Internal Links?
An internal link is any link that directs visitors to a different page on your website.
Users and search engines use links to navigate the content on your website. Links help your users navigate your website and find the content they're looking for.
Types of Internal Links
You could add internal links on your website, such as:
|The most prevalent kind of internal links is navigation links. These links help the reader navigate your website's content and structure it. Every page of your website has links to the navigation.|
|Links placed in your website's body copy are known as editorial links. These links are the most beneficial for your site, focusing on niche keywords.|
|These links point your visitors toward exciting and pertinent content. They also let search engines recognize related content on your website and assess its worth.|
|Taxonomy and categorical links||These connect related topics, like blog categories or related posts, to make it simpler for users to find content. They can also link to pages for parent services.|
Footer or site-wide links
|Site-wide or footer links are used to improve the usability of your website. They are found at the bottom of your page.Contact information, social media widgets, and a site search engine are frequently found in the footer of websites.|
Internal Links vs. External Links
Internal links are clickable links that take website visitors to a specific page. An internal link connects two pages within the same domain.
External links encourage visitors to click on links that lead them away from your website. External links also referred to as outbound links, are crucial for search engine optimization.
Why You Should Focus on Building Internal Linking Strategy
Here are three compelling reasons to create a well-structured internal link strategy for your website.
It enhances the user experience.
Strategically linking your content improves the user experience and extracts more value from what you have to offer.
Without internal links, a blog post or page would be far less helpful to readers because they would have to conduct additional searches until they found the material they need to learn more.
It promotes fresh and strategic content.
Your company's success depends on strategic content.
When it comes to disclosure and ranking, your content requires special consideration, and one of the simplest and most valuable ways to promote content is through internal linking.
Choose a few blog posts or navigation areas, such as the sidebar or the main menu, to place the link, perhaps even with a CTA.
Additionally, new content that has just been published gets indexed by Google more quickly when you link to it, which improves your chances of ranking highly on search engine results pages.
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It transforms potential clients through the buying process.
Your blog's internal link strategy can assist in guiding leads through the purchasing process.
A business that wants to generate inbound leads could write several blog posts on the same general subject directed at the top of the funnel.
Including links in the text with CTAs to contact consultants or request quotes is another choice.
Why are Links Important to Google?
Google uses bots to crawl websites by following internal and external links. When a website's homepage is reached, the bot begins by clicking the first link it sees there.
It can learn about the connections between various web pages within a website by following these links.
The homepage of every website typically has the most internal links with the highest link value. The link's value will be distributed among the other links on the following web pages as it is passed along.
The purpose of incorporating links into your content is to help Google understand the structure of your website. They assist you in creating a site hierarchy that enables you to give essential web pages on your website or blog posts more value than the rest.
Importance of Internal Linking Hierarchy
Internal links aid in the creation of a hierarchy of information on your website, which aids in establishing your website structure and allows users to navigate the site easily.
Users will spend more time on your site because of the ease of navigation.
A solid internal linking strategy can direct visitors to high-converting pages, resulting in increased revenue for your company. Google will receive a positive signal about your site's performance. As users spend more time and view more pages on your site, Google will enhance your site's ranking.
Internal linking is a component of on-page SEO that improves Google rankings while making it easier for users to navigate.
You can also get a clear look at how important each link URL is through the SEOLeverage app. Simply go to Inter Linking > Page Importance to see your URLs sorted in order of importance.
Internal Linking Best Practices and Tips
An internal link strategy must be evaluated and improved regularly for your site's SEO. By including the appropriate internal links, you ensure that Google understands the following:
- the significance of pages;
- the page-to-page relationship;
- and the value of each page.
When creating your strategy, there are some things to consider. The way you go about it depends on your webpage and goals, but the following steps are a good starting point.
Choose the best structure for your site.
Website owners should consider their site to be a pyramid. Your homepage is at the top; below are some segments or categories, and then further down are individual posts and pages. Place subcategories in between if possible.
Create a lot of content.
To create many internal links across your site, you must build many internal pages and write high-quality content.
With a lot of content on your website, you'll have plenty of internal linking opportunities to take advantage of. You won't have to worry about the silo technique to create a good internal linking structure.
Determine your most important content.
Your most important content should be your most valuable and comprehensive content. It should be about the core of your business — this content is called cornerstone content. It is the content you want people to find when they search for topics or products in which you specialize.
Cornerstone articles are frequently lengthy, in-depth pieces that cover all the essential information about a particular subject while combining insights from various blog posts.
A blog post or a page can be the cornerstone content. Make sure they are incredibly well written, that you update them frequently and that you try to get them ranked for your most challenging keywords.
Because you want Google to know that this is your most important content, you should include many links. You should also add more links pointing to your cornerstone content.
Again, SEOLeverage app’s Page Importance feature can help you do this, as it assigns actual numbers to your URLs depending on how important they are.
The higher the number, the more important it’s deemed to be in the SEO standpoint. Thus, you should focus more on those pages.
Include contextual links
The primary goal of an internal linking strategy is to provide a better user experience; all other benefits follow later. Google favors sites that strive to provide a positive user experience.
When you add internal links to a piece of content, you're letting that user know that the linked web pages will be relevant to the context of that specific piece of content.
It will show Google and users that those articles are related. You can add links at the end of your post or link directly from sentences in your copy.
Connect hierarchical pages.
If your website has hierarchical pages, link the main pages to their sub-pages and vice versa. Also, remember to link lateral pages together.
On a well-organized website, these pages should be related, and connecting them in this manner makes perfect sense.
A personalized SEO plan will help you build effective hierarchical pages.
Limit the number of internal links as much as possible.
You don't need an excessive number of internal links on your website just to have them.
There is no recorded limit to how many internal links you can create on your site. You can include two to five links per post, depending on length.
Five internal links would suffice for a 1500-word article. Also, ensure that the links are distributed evenly throughout the content and not clumped together.
Avoid using the exact anchor text on two different pages.
If you use identical anchor text for two different web pages, Google becomes confused and may assume that the web pages hold information on the same topic. To avoid confusion, try to use descriptive anchor texts on web pages.
Replace internal links in old articles.
Internal linking is most effective when combined with another SEO technique—updating old content.
When you update old content, Google's crawler recognizes it, indexes it again, and its ranking in the search engine result pages may improve.
Here's an excellent way to go about updating your old blog posts:
- In the beginning, add a new paragraph explaining your updates.
- Throughout, add several new sections with additional or updated information.
- Remove or replace any obsolete statistics or data.
- Add a few new internal links to recently created content.
- Add links where they are sensible and add value.
Consider including navigational links.
Aside from linking from topically related posts and pages, you can increase the authority of your cornerstone content by linking to it from the homepage or top navigation.
It would be best to do this with your company's most important posts and pages. It will increase the link value of these posts or pages and strengthens them in Google's eyes.
Include hyperlinks in your taxonomies.
Like categories and tags, taxonomies help you organize your website and make it easier for users and search engines to understand your content.
If you have a blog, it may be beneficial to include internal links to the taxonomies to which the post belongs. Adding links to categories and tags helps Google understand the structure of your blog and allows visitors to navigate to related posts more easily.
Consider including links to popular or recently published posts.
Make internal links to your website's most popular or most recent posts. Create these sections in your website's sidebar or footer to have them appear on all pages and posts.
As link value travels to these most popular articles from various pages, they gain traction. Aside from that, the posts will be more accessible to visitors, increasing traffic which is a good sign for Google.
Place links prominently on your page.
High-up internal links lengthen user engagement and lower bounce rates by increasing time spent on the page.
When an internal link is included at the start of an article, readers will have something to look at immediately, prompting them to stay on your website longer. Internal links should be scattered throughout the page's content, but adding one or two at the top is also not bad.
As your site grows, regularly crawl your site and check your internal links. It will allow you to keep your page current and benefit from all the advantages of internal linking.
You can easily enhance your site's internal linking structure by adhering to these efficient internal linking practices.
By consistently adhering to internal linking best practices throughout the entire site, you can eventually increase your website's SEO.
And don’t forget to use the SEOLeverage app to help you choose which links are worth it!