I’ve been talking to someone recently about internal linking, pagerank, RSS & xml sitemaps – and how they all hang together - and I thought I’d just share how I think about it – especially on sites with lesser domain authority.
Remember Google uses Pagerank, to determine “the importance of a page” so:
- Pinging Google blogsearch (still my favourite way of getting pages into Google results fast ) and XML sitemaps may help Google discover your pages and include them in search results, but they still aren’t the best way at all of helping Google determine which of your pages to KEEP or EMPHASISE or RANK or HELP OTHER PAGES TO RANK (ie the importance of a page), as time goes by.
While XML sitemaps goes some way to address this with the: attribute (The priority of this URL relative to other URLs on your site. Valid values range from 0.0 to 1.0. This value does not affect how your pages are compared to pages on other sitesâ€”it only lets the search engines know which pages you deem most important for the crawlers – www.sitemaps.org) – I certainly wouldn’t ever just rely on xml like that….. the old ways work just as they always have – and often the old advice is still the best especially in SEO.
- Keeping your pages in Google and getting them to rank is controlled by linking (Pagerank) – links from internal pages and from other sites to the page in question.
- Every page need to be linked to other pages for Pagerank (and other ranking benefits) to flow to other pages – that is the traditional, and I think accepted theory, on the question of link equity.
- Some sites can have short circuits – internal PR is prevented from filtering to other pages because Google cannot ‘see’ or ‘crawl’ that fancy menu system you’re using on deep pages. SEE here how Google sees your site.
- If you don’t have a lot of links, have poorly optimised (ORIGINAL) content found on other websites, and if you are starving a page of internal link equity – you will probably always have ranking problems for that page.
- The larger a site becomes, the more these problems become apparent, and you’ll probably need to start siloing content via categories & tags etc – how you interlink your pages on your site my be the first indication which pages are useful to Googlebot.
- You can’t emphasise everything, so ensure you emphasise the pages that are of most importance to you, by linking to them a lot, especially from relevant pages on your site.
In short, rely on the ‘newer’ protocols for discovery purposes, and the old tried and trusted way of building a site to get it ranking properly over time. Let me know how you think about or visualise internal “link equity”.
Related Posts On Internal Linking
Seeing as I am doing internal linking this week, I’ll start off by giving my curent pages on internals some link love…
“I like to structure my site so I don’t need to â€œnofollowâ€ a lot of internal links to target heat – but I have no problem using this method. …”
“I’d long fell out of love with PR sculpting internal pages using nofollow as the results were not worth it for me on the sites I worked on …”
“OK – From this test, and the results on this site anyways, testing links internal to this site, it seems Google only counted the first link …”
“Hmmmmâ€¦ while you can certainly overdo it in terms of spammy internal linking or spammy on-page seo, I don’t think you can ‘overheat’ a page on your site if …”
“After reading all those links in your other internal link scupting post, I decided to take one of my 10 page sites and start it from scratch …”
“I’ll lay down my thoughts on internal link optimisation later in this seo tutorial, but onpage, I link internal to relevant pages in my site …”
“For example (and I am talking internal here – if you took a page and I placed two links on it, both going to the same page? …”
“Make a relevant, well optimised page that is well linked to in your internal site structure, and back it up with a few anchor text rich …”
“Though in a page title, it may rank, throw in an internal link or … You can do a lot of this via internal links on a strong domain. …”
“Should you nofollow unimportant internal pages or nofollow external links in an effort to consolidate the Pagerank you have already accrued? …”
“The first one is a a page where it contains links to your internal pages and the second which is in the format of xml is meant to guide the …”
“If you can’t be bothered tell Google what your most important pages are on your site via your own internal navigation structure, …”
“not one mention of their keywords in their internal link profile – or the secondary link profile, as I think of it. …”
“By now everybody knows internal linking is very important – it gives you a chance to add keywords into your link profile and lets users …”
“page.htmâ€ and â€œsub.domain.com/page.htmâ€) access the same content; mixing www. and non-www. versions of URLs in your internal linking …”
“Your internal links! Get your site in order before you get links. Google loves a good site structure with plenty of text links pointing to …”
“What’s best practice when creating links – internal, or external? What is the optimal length of a HTML link? …”