Internal links are a key factor in search engine optimization but are also a benefit to your website visitors. These links point to other areas of your website and are a key part of search engine optimization. Your website’s internal links are one thing you can control compared to external links that are other websites that point to your website.
Link Signals is a huge part of ranking in search engines
Internal links are overlooked and ignored. Our goal is to cover why they are important, how to do it, and how you can maintain a good link structure if you are maintaining all or part of your website yourself.
Why Internal links matter in SEO
When Googlebot scans your website, it follows the links that are on the page it is scanning and scans them as well. Linking to other pages and posts is like giving Googlebot a map to tell it where you want it to go.
Did you notice that link went to another post where we talked about Googlebot? That is an internal link from one post to another post.
Why internal links matter to your website visitors
The way people consume information has changed. The marketing funnel is upside-down, and consumers control it all; it is a good thing, however; your website structure should cater to this upside-down funnel.
As consumers are researching the services you offer, your content can guide them down a path to buying from you. As you link to other pages, this is proving your authority with the visitor as they find out what they need to know from your or your company.
We aren’t just giving a map to Google; we are providing it to our website visitors as well.
A link to the common eye doesn’t look like much. Let’s look at the code of a link.
Href– this is the target page
Title – this is what shows when the link is hovered and important to SEO
Anchor Text (visible part) – this is the visible part of the link and is what helps build your rankings.
Target – This is how you want the link to open. Blank if you are linking to a file or another website, so it opens in a new tab and default if you are linking to a page on your website.
Internal linking tips
The pages you are linking to – the core site structure
Your website’s page names should support the goal for the page. Let’s say you are a landscaper and you are linking to the “Yard Maintenance” page of your website. The page should be yard-maintenance or some other main keyword that people search when they are looking for that service.
The title of the link is important, but I am also of the belief to make this part useful to your site visitors. Use your main keywords in a meaningful way. Sticking with our landscaper example, it might say, “Yard Maintenance Services” or “Lawn Maintenance Services.” we are expanding on the service, using our keywords, and making the title a short and user-friendly statement, so they know what to expect if they go to the page.
When determining what your anchor text should be, consider your visitor.
- How can you tell them in a few words what is at that link?
- How can you tell them and still use your keywords and phrases?
Back to our landscaper friend. The link that points to the “Yard Maintenance” page might look something like this.
…when considering the elements of your outside landscape consider what yard maintenance it will take. Will you want to maintain the yard your self or hire a landscaper for maintenance?
The phrase we chose to create the link is “hire a landscaper for maintenance.” You could have also chosen “yard maintenance,” but don’t think you need to keep it all the same.
Control and Maintenance
As you can tell from the above example, you have more control over the title tag and anchor text of your internal links. Keep in mind your goals and use it to build a great site structure.
As you add more articles, blog posts, it is easy to look back at past posts and link to them. What many ignore is linking to the new content from previous articles. A good content strategy in place will make this process easier and more effective. (Did you notice the internal link there?)
A good content strategy will have an inventory of existing content, a good description of each piece, success metrics, as well as other core elements. You can use this document to see how your current and past content connects to match your goals. You can use a successful post to help build up the success of a newer post. It all boils down to your goals.
Building internal links is not as hard as you would think. Keep in mind your goals and be strategic with how you are linking the pages of your website together.
If you have a question about your website rankings, let us know. We will run an SEO audit of your business, which includes the internal link structure on your website. Give us a call (662) 553-4777 or request a quote.
Filed In: Search Engine Optimization