As a website administrator, it is important to use internal links to help search engines understand the pages, hierarchy, and structure of the site. They also improve user-friendliness and are an important ranking factor in SEO.
Internal links are links between different pages on the same domain, unlike external links (backlinks) that go from one domain to another.
How to use internal links to improve your SEO
An important part of search engine optimization is using internal links to help search engines understand your site’s page structure and hierarchy. It is a way of distributing and displaying the authority of different pages. The earlier a page appears in your page structure, the more important it is considered to be.
Using internal links to a particular page can increase the authority of that particular page and improve its ranking. This is explained by the concept of “link power”. Usually, one’s home page has the most backlinks connected to it and thus also the most link power. It is therefore important to distribute link power to the most relevant pages through the page structure. By using internal links to other pages, you can show which pages you want to prioritize and give more link power.
By using search engine optimization you can increase the chance of generating organic traffic to your site. Organic traffic is free and can be achieved by creating relevant and quality content on your website, or by hiring an SEO-expert for professional help.
Examples of internal links
- Main menu and footer
The links from the main menu and the footer are sitewide, meaning they appear throughout the site. Therefore, it is important to link only to the most important landing pages in order to optimize those pages with high link power for SEO purposes. It is also important to consider the ease of use and not to overdo the number of internal links, as this can dilute the linking power.
- The home page
As mentioned above, it is usually the home page that has the most backlinks directed towards it and thus the highest link power. Therefore, it is often a good idea to use internal links from the homepage to the most important pages of the website to further strengthen the authority of these pages.
- Internal links in the running text
The most common way to use internal links is in the running text. Depending on where in the hierarchy the page is, the link power can vary. An internal link in the running text on the main page, for example, has higher link power than if the link were on a subcategory page.When using internal links in running text, it is important that the page the visitor lands on via the link is relevant, and not just to link internally for the sake of it. For example: “If you want to know more about how to create good SEO content for your website, you can read our previous article on this, important things to consider when creating SEO content“.The most important factor is creating clusters. For example, you can have several service pages that belong together and are in the same segment as news articles or even blog posts. Therefore, it is important to create clusters for it. Take the example of search engine optimization.
At Awave, we have a page that communicates search engine optimization. In addition, there are lots of blog posts and other articles that are within the same segment which then internally link to the page on search engine optimization. In this way a cluster is created.
By using breadcrumbs you improve your website’s internal link structure. This makes it easier for search engines to index and understand the structure faster. It can ultimately help the site rank higher with the search engines as it gets better SEO.
Anchor texts for SEO ranking
When using anchor text, that is, a description of what the page the internal link goes to is about, it’s important to keep a few things in mind. The search engines value a descriptive anchor text because it helps both them and the users to navigate the site and understand its content more easily. A descriptive anchor text also means that your SEO ranking may become higher, which benefits you in the end.
To avoid confusion with search engines and internal competition between pages on the website, it is also important not to use the same anchor text for several different pages. It can be negative for search engine optimization because it becomes difficult to rank the keyword for any of the pages as the search engines find it difficult to determine which page is most relevant for the current anchor text. To increase the chances of ranking high, you should use unique and relevant anchor texts for every internal link you have. This helps the search engines more easily understand the structure and content in a correct way.
Where to find your internal links
If you want to get an overview of your internal links on the website, you can use the free Google Search Console tool and navigate to the “Links” section. There you can quickly see which pages have the most links pointing towards them and which have fewer or no internal links.
With the help of other SEO tools, such as Screaming Frog or the like, you can make more detailed analyzes of all pages. However, note that these tools often cost you to use them.
The team at Awave have experience working with internal links in a correct way. Contact us for help and more information!