One of the best ways for boosting SEO on your site is to focus on internal links – which very simply means connecting related content or pages on the same website.
By optimizing your website, you can significantly improve your chances of being ranked higher on search engines like Google and Bing.
What are Internal Links?
According to Moz, “Internal Links are hyperlinks that point at (target) the same domain as the domain that the link exists on (source). In layman’s terms, an internal link is one that points to another page on the same website.”
Here’s an example: AndiSites offers a WordPress monthly maintenance package. See those underlined words that go to another page on this site? That’s an internal link.
Why Are They Important?
- These links help users navigate your website. Users can visit related content without having to rely on the main website navigation.
- Internal links help define the hierarchy of your website content. The more internal links there are to a page or post, the more important those pages and posts are in the hierarchy.
- Internal links are crucial to good search engine optimization (SEO). It makes it easier for search engines to crawl your site. These links also keep users on your site, increase their visits to other pages, and improve their overall engagement.
Boosting SEO with Internal Linking
Here are some key tips for adding and formatting these internal links, and the benefits of doing it properly:
1. Share the linking love
Internal links help to spread the value or importance of a link across several pages.
2. Create more quality content
The more content you have, the more opportunities you have for linking within the site. When you publish new content, find a couple of relevant existing posts or pages, and add a link to that new content. Boosting SEO is actually easier than you might think!
3. Emphasize the connections
Internal links help put focus on how your content connects. Web crawlers LOVE when there is a relationship between content. Conversely, crawlers struggle to find “orphaned content” on your site. These are pages or posts that are not linked to from anywhere else on your website.
4. Guide your users
Internal linking helps lead visitors through your pages. This keeps them on your site for longer, too, which helps build trust, can increase ad revenue, and improves the validity of your site with Google and other search engines.
In addition, place links obviously and intuitively. Imagine you’re a user with a short attention span (as most are). When you quickly scan the page, you should immediately see highlighted text that links to internal pages.
5. Don’t Include the Actual URL
Here are some examples of “good” and “bad” linking practices:
GOOD: See what our clients say about AndiSites! (link in relevant text)
BAD: Click here for the plan options. (does not use relevant keywords)
BAD: For options, visit: https://andisites.com. (includes actual URL)
6. Link Email Addresses
Use the text “Email” or “Contact Us” rather than spell out the email address on the page.
In code, this looks like <a href=”mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org”>Email</a>
- Feel free to contact me at email@example.com for further information.
- Changed to: Feel free to contact me via email for further information. (link in bold text).
You’ll also want to make the link open in a new tab so that it opens the user’s email client but saves where they were on your site.
Summary of Boosting SEO with Internal Links
Proper internal linking will help users find what they need faster, prevent them from leaving your site, and improve your search engine rankings.
Additionally, while linking within your own site is just one important strategy for boosting SEO, it’s an easy initial strategy to adopt as a best practice moving forward.