One of the most important matters in your search engine optimization journey is your internal linking strategy. Some ignore this very crucial step in building an SEO campaign simply because it tends to be a complex strategy. However, it’s not as complicated as many people make it out to be. It could all be so simple…
What Is Internal Linking?
Internal links are hyperlinks that point to another page on the same website. In other words, the link leads to a page on the same domain. These links help organize your site and provide a lot of value to your SEO.
- Help users navigate your site and easily find more information
- Create a hierarchy of pages on your website
- Give more ranking power to pages around your website
How this strategy helps your SEO efforts
How does an internal linking strategy help your SEO? Well, to put it simply, search engines need to see how the content on your site is organized in order to reach and “read” your content. Internal links tell them where to go and how to index the pages on your site.
If there aren’t links to your subpages, Google will not know that they exist, and thus they can’t be indexed for users’ searches. A good internal linking strategy provides those routes for the Bots to crawl and navigate your site.
Improve the Internal Linking on Your Website
There are many ways to improve the internal linking on your site. This strategy, in particular, is debated heavily by SEOs. The number of links you add to your content and how you build your strategy will all depend on your site, its content, and the needs of your target audience.
Use good anchor texts
Your anchor text is the words and phrase you attach a link to. When creating internal links and anchor text on your site, you want to use descriptive and relevant keywords and phrases. It needs to make sense when the reader clicks on the link.
Internal links should be natural inside the content—there’s no need to over-optimize here. Your reader should just be able to click a few words and not be surprised at what’s on the other side of the link.
When deciding on which internal links to include, ask yourself, Does this add value to the topic I’m currently writing about? Could this link be helpful to the reader? If you answered “Yes,” add that link!
Grow your content marketing
A good internal linking strategy starts with a strong content marketing strategy. In order to grow the links going to and from your pages, you need more content on your site that provides value. Strategize on more internal pages you should create. Be thoughtful in this content creation. Your job is to create content that adds more value to the reader—not just creating for the sake of creating.
Link to a variety of pages
Of course, it’s good to have calls to action that lead people to your Home and Contact Us pages, but those shouldn’t be the only pages you link to. Get strategic with your link building, and plan those link paths to go deep through your site’s internal and subpages. Allow people to read more about your industry and services instead of forcing them to call before they’re ready.
Some SEOs argue about how many internal links are too many. It’s difficult to come up with one standard answer for all websites. Some say it’s great for a page to have about 100 links on it (including the head navigation bar, footer menu, ads, and other types of links.) However, it’s just important that you consider your reader before making hard decisions like the number of links to create. Just think about the value you’re adding; include whatever’s necessary. (As long as you’re not adding a new link to every word.)
Use tools to build your strategy
Tools like the Yoast SEO Link Counter are great to help in building your strategy. This tool counts the number of outgoing links in your post (that lead to another page), as well as the number of internal links (that have come from another page).
This can help you determine which posts and pages are “orphans,” meaning there are no links leading to those pages. Consider these numbers when you plan which links to add to your content.
We’ve Got Your Back
Post Launch knows a thing or two about search engine optimization. Take a look at how we help grow your strategy online. Then give us a call to learn more.