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To follow or not to follow? That is the question!

Backlinks, Follow & NoFollow Links

It is really important to understand the difference between follow and nofollow links if you are looking to maximize your digital performance.  They should be a major part of your SEO strategy.  So, the big question really is “To follow or not to follow? That is the question!”

What are Follow Links?

Follow links are backlinks (or inbound links) that tell search engine crawlers to follow the hyperlink. Basically, if you have a link to another site that is set as “follow link”, you are telling google and other search engines that the link can be trusted.  The more trusted backlinks you have coming to your website, the higher it will register in search engine indexing and SERP rankings.  In other words, your page will receive positive votes for credibility and the more votes the better.

These types of follow links are the best type of inbound links that you can have.  This is why in all our projects, I always set up a backlink to my business website and set one up on my portfiolio page to your site.  They essentially drive readers to your page and the search engine crawlers to the content on your page.

What are Nofollow Links?

Unlike do follow, these have a “nofollow” attribute in the HTML tag telling crawlers not to follow the link.  Another notable difference from do follows is that nofollow links do not used to earn points for credibility.  In 2019 Google made a big change to its strategy relating to nofollow links.  Now a crawler does not look at a Nofollow link so decisively.  The nofollow atribute is now a indication that the link is not valued as high as a follow link.

Why Use Nofollow Links?

Before 2005 nofollow links were created to fight spam and backlink abuse on blogs, and search results.  Not having nofollow links skewed the results form search engine algorithms and caused spammer sites to rank too high.  This changed in 2005 with the invention of the nofollow link.  These are used commonly on comments, forums, widgets and paid links or sponsored content.

Nofollow links have evolved since their creation. There are now ways to specify outbound links with the HTML attributes rel=”ugc” and rel=”sponsored.

Rel=”ugc” is for user generated content. Comments and forums are both types of user generated content.

Rel=”sponsored” is for sponsored content. Use this for advertisements, affiliate links, or anytime links are exchanged for money or goods.

What is the difference between crawling, indexing and ranking?

Crawling is when Google or Bing sends out robots to explore the internet. These robots are often called “crawlers” or “spiders.” They scan content and HTML codes of every URL or website that they come across.

The reason that backlinks are so important is that crawlers discover website URLs via links. They start by inspecting a few pages and follow backlinks on those pages to find new websites.  Crawlers also find pages that have a sitemap.

Once content is discovered by the crawlers, it is then indexed. This means that the search engine is storing it for reference when a person starts a search.

Not all content on your website, and this when your “noindex” property comes into action.  These pages include your privacy policy or shipping page for example.

Once the search engine has indexed content, it then ranks the content from most relevant to least relevant each time a user submits a search.

A digital marketing agency working on SEO’s aims to rank businesses well on a search engine results page or AKA – SERP. A business wants to reach their potential clients via the web. A search engine’s goal is to show the most relevant and useful content to the user on a results page.  And that is why you need to take very seriously the question “To follow or not to follow? That is the question!”.

Building backlinks is one of your most important jobs for your website.

The best way to organically earn backlinks is to create quality content regularly. If you publish great and interesting content, others will want to link to it.

NeoMam Studio’s complies a list that everyone should review who is working on backlinks.  Why reinvent the wheel so to speak.

“At NeoMam, we spend all our time trying to produce the best link-worthy content we can day in, day out. But throughout the year we are also following the work of other teams, and every so often we feel a slight pang of jealousy.”  NeoMan website text

Also contact business contacts and offer them a reciprocal backlink.  It will help both businesses especially if you are referring business to them anyway.

Choose other forums and websites that you know that readers will benefit from your content.  Write new content to your websites blog regularly…at least twice a week!

Search Engine Optimization is a beast and required a lot of work!  Do not underestimate the amount of work it takes both from a company that you hire and the work you will need to do yourself.  Do think that you are paying an SEO company and that is where your responsibility stops.  They will need content, they will need you to share, post and post and share.  It is hard work, but the results are well worth it!

Alyson Stasek

CEO and Owner – The Little Web Design Shop

www.WebDesignShop.us

Tel 601 667 0009

Cell 601 439 0932

Alyson@WebDesignShop.us

SEO Report

#seo #backlinks #webdesign #nofollowlinks #followlinks #indexing #crawling #tlwds #webdesignshop

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