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How to Reap the Benefits of Internal Linking in SEO?

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Stella Newman
March 01, 2017

Stella Newman

Stella Newman, one of the core members of Austin Search Engine Optimization, has great knowledge of the newer styles of SEO with the best practices of the old SEO. Thus she can create the balance in modern SEO by blending the new and old the best.

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It’s obvious that you would check whether your SEO planning is right or not by tallying your effortsin light of the latest Google updates. Add SEO auditing steps to that, and the evaluation gets complex. These complex evaluations become crucial when planning and measuring the SEO tactics and strategies. While focusing mostly on the popular strategies, businesses often overlook other equally important and fundamental steps of SEO. One such step is the internal linking within a website.

What is Internal Linking?

Internal linking refers to that mesh network formed inside the site, which actually creates thefoundation of the website by making a framework of supporting links, which maintain the flow of traffic in a meaningful, impactful, effective and healthy way inside the webpages of the site. It’squite easy to plan internal linking, and it isreallybeneficial. On the contrary, if you are not focused on linking pages internally, you are actually not helping your content get highlighted by other parts of the site. A lot of marketers spend so much of their time focusing on building backlinks to attract traffic to the site that they forget about internal linking. This essentially costs them a lot of visitors.

A common website also has internal linking between pages. It simply happenswhen the home page directs to another page through a link, and the contacts page again directs to the About Us page, and so on. But these are not done by giving much effort and are generally part of the site design. When the same thing is done consciously by placing links inside the site content so that the reader is benefittedfrom getting connected to other relevant content, itimproves SEO performance.

How has internal linking evolved over the years?

Earlier, the old method of internal linking was focused on bringing most of the site traffic to one page, thus creating a link funnel. This was done in conjunctionwith keyword based ranking efforts. Things have changed now, and much more effective ways and logical planning are being used. In today’s internal linking concept, it’s about creating a strategic network of links, placed through the site to create logical connections between the pages, and to makecontents more helpful.

What is the optimum amount of internal links which should be placed inside a site?

If you believe that you have the scope to connect two contents on the site by using 10 links inside content, you may do so. It’s all about delivering this message to the search engines that you value your own site’s content, and have trust on them. At the same time, through planned internal linking, which does not look spammy and meaningless, and actually is rather beneficial, you engage your readers more and increase the average visitorengagement time inside the site.

Don’t spam your Footer area

Some people make the mistake of spamming their own site’s footer area with keywords and internal linking of those keywords to irrelevant contents, simply to attract attention. This is a strict no no. There's also need to make all internal links unfollow. Keep them natural, and let them do the magic.

The main advantages of Internal Linking

There are a lot of advantages of internal linking. The user experience or UX is highly increased when relevant content can be found within the site through internal linking. Moreover, the credibility of content is highlighted before the search engine, and the site gets indexed sooner, and pages are easy to navigate as a result. Besides, there are some other important benefits which are discussed below.

  • The better you link internally, the easier it gets for the Google bots to crawl and read the links. As a result, the site gets indexed sooner, and all new contents placed inside get quickly indexed.
  • Every internal link contributes to the list of backlinks of the website, thus increasing the changes to rank better in SERP.
  • While internal links connect one part of the site to another, it also does another important job. It brings you the scope to attach an anchor text to it, which can be an important keyword.
  • If a user finds links and pages inside the site easy to navigate, the average UX is enhanced.

The best practices

The best practice for internal linking is to concentrate on quality content. No visitor would stick to the site for long even when guided from one portion to another through internal links if the content is not good enough and engaging. Therefore, the site must have valuable content. Also the use of proper anchor text while linking determines how relevant the link is. You must develop a profound understanding of which scope to use best for linking internally and mastering the art will show you results soon.

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