How to Build Good Internal Links for Your Website?
Building internal links is a crucial aspect of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) that’s often overlooked. By linking webpages within the same domain, businesses can improve their website’s structure and hierarchy, making it easier for search engines to crawl and index their content.
After the recent spate of Google algorithm updates, it has been discovered that good internal linking can help establish the relevance and authority of a website’s pages, significantly impacting search engine rankings.
In this article, we’ll explore the importance of building good internal links for SEO and provide tips on how businesses can optimize their internal linking strategy to achieve better search engine visibility. Whether you own a small business or are a seasoned SEO professional working with clients, understanding the importance of internal linking can help you create a user-friendly and search engine-friendly website.
What Are Internal Links?
Internal website links, also known as internal links or inbound links, are hyperlinks that connect one webpage to another webpage within the same domain. These links allow users to navigate within a website, accessing relevant content and information on different pages.
Internal links can be used in navigation menus, page content, or footer sections of a website. The links help establish a website’s structure and hierarchy, making it easier for users and search engines to understand the relationship between different pages. Internal website links differ from external links, which connect one website to another.
Internal Links Help Establish Authority
Internal links pass authority within a website by establishing a hierarchy of pages and distributing link equity. This is defined as the value and authority passed from one page to another via a series of hyperlinks. When a webpage links to another page on the same website, it signals to search engines that the linked page is essential and relevant to the content on the linking page. The linked page receives some of the link equity from the linking page, which can help to improve its search engine visibility and rankings.
The link equity distribution within a website is determined by the number and quality of internal links pointing to a particular page. Pages with more internal links pointing to them generally receive more link equity and are considered of higher importance by search engines.
Additionally, the anchor text of internal links plays a massive role in passing authority. Descriptive and relevant anchor text helps search engines understand the context of the linked page and can improve its rankings for relevant search queries.
Below we’ll go into a few tips for building good internal links to help rank the most critical pages on your website.
Identify the Website’s Pillar Pages
The first step is to identify all the pillar pages on your website. If you don’t have pillar pages because your website is new, you’ll need to create them. Depending on how your website is set up, central pages are often about a broad topic which is then linked to more specific pages.
Pillar pages are considered foundational or starter pages for building content clusters, which can be groups of content about specific topics. Generally, pillar pages target broader, high-volume keywords instead of specific long-tail keywords. Coming up with these will help you build the architecture of the website.
You can envision pillar pages at the top of your marketing funnel. This then needs to link out to more niche pages. For instance, a real estate page will link to commercial and domestic real estate sub-pages. Domestic real estate will link out to homes, apartments, etc.
How to Choose Anchor Texts?
Choosing relevant anchor text for internal linking is essential for user experience and search engine optimization. Anchor text is the clickable text of a hyperlink. It helps users and search engines understand the context of the page being linked.
Here are a couple of tips to help you choose the best anchor texts for internal linking:
➩ Use descriptive text: Choose anchor text that accurately describes the linked page’s content. Avoid generic or vague terms like “click here” or “read more,” as they don’t provide any context for the user or search engine. According to Google, the anchor text should be descriptive so people know why they should click the link and go to the page.
➩ Include relevant keywords: Incorporate relevant keywords in the anchor text to help search engines understand the topic and relevance of the linked page. However, avoid over-optimizing anchor text by stuffing it with too many keywords, as this, after the recent string of spam updates by Google, is seen as spammy and may harm your search engine rankings.
➩ Keep it short: Anchor text should be short and to the point. You don’t want multiple-word phrases strung together as your anchor text. If you can describe it in one word, then don’t use two is the rule here.
➩ Use variation: Use a variety of anchor texts throughout your website to avoid repetition and overuse of specific phrases. This helps to maintain a natural linking profile and can improve your website’s search engine visibility. That said, you will want to avoid overusing words or generic words such as “read here,” “learn more,” “click here,” etc.
One of the keys to building good internal links is knowing why you’re creating them. You shouldn’t just build links because they are good for SEO but also to help your online users. Remember that usability is king when it comes to optimizing a website. The more you can make it user-friendly, the better.
The same goes for the content you are creating and linking to. If the content is entirely irrelevant, don’t link to it. Instead, the focus should be on creating relevant content and linking to it, which will help bolster your short- and long-term SEO efforts while aiding conversions.