Link building is an important skill in SEO. When reputable websites send links back to your website, it signals to Google that your brand or company is a respected source. While there is a lot of focus on the importance of having a link building campaign, there is not enough focus on the type of link. Always ask for do follow links. Otherwise, even links from reputable websites may have a negligible impact on your SEO.
What Are No Follow and Do Follow Links?
When websites link back to your social media page, Amazon eBook or website, there are two main types of links they can use. No follow links include a rel=“nofollow” tag in the URL, which removes SEO value, for better or worse. These types of links help reduce the effectiveness and the likelihood of people creating accounts for no better purpose than to post spam in the comments sections of blogs.
In contrast, a do follow link has nothing added to the URL related to this function. This signals to search engines that the link may help — or hurt — the website it links back to. When provided by reputable sites, they act as votes of confidence for your website. If the websites earned a reputation for blackhat practices and Google blacklisted them, this may negatively impact your website as well.
How Do I Spot Do Follow Links?
Content creators and website admins rarely use full URLs within the body of the content anymore. Hyperlinked text is virtually every link you come across on a modern website. Here are a few ways to get around this:
- Copy the URL: Use the right-click function or the equivalent and choose “Copy URL address” or something of similar meaning. Paste it into a new document or an empty search bar and see if there is a no follow tag included.
- Inspect the URL: If you are using the Chrome browser, you can right-click on the link and select “Inspect.” This opens a window that highlights the HTML information. You can then take a good look at the information provided to see if there is a no-follow tag.
- View Page Source: Right-click on the actual page and choose “View Page Source.” Copy and paste the URL into the CTRL+F function’s box and locate it. When you do, look to see if there is a no follow tag. You could also just look for “nofollow.”
It’s important to note that most social media pages and public forums rarely send do follow links back to websites. So, people who lose the ability to comment spam can’t use social media platforms to successfully replicate or replace this.
Do No Follow Links Have Any Benefits?
Because of the importance of links with SEO juice, many content creators become discouraged when publications insist on only offering no follow links. This often results in content creators turning down the opportunity to write for some of the best websites in their niche. They then focus solely on the direct SEO aspect of their link building campaign.
Consider that SEO is just one aspect of marketing. There are other benefits to gain from writing for a larger publication, even without do follow links. The potential for greater traffic via this link can also help to boost other SEO indicators for your websites, such as social sharing and engagement.
- Exposure: If you’re new to blogging or haven’t yet established your brand, blogging on more established platforms can help you reach your target audience. Even if no one clicks on the links in the beginning, they begin to get used to seeing your name or that of your company.
- Connections: Every business has specific parties it wishes to reach beyond the customer base. You may also want to attract investors, top-performing employees, business partners, advertisers or influencers. Writing for other platforms can make this possible — do follow links or not.
- Social Shares: Growing from the social media platform requires putting out great content and engaging with other users. You can also rely on social shares from other established publishers that share your content, especially if it includes a social media tag to your page.
- Feedback: Sometimes the most priceless perk companies get in response to blog posts is feedback. If the product or service they provide is new, customers may pose questions or point out flaws that companies can address before a full launch or in time for the revised version.
- Authority: Do follow links signal to search engines that you’re a subject matter expert. Writing for established platforms signals to readers that you are an authority in the subject area. After all, not everyone gets their articles published on a website belonging to a university, government agency or news channel.
How Do I Get Do Follow Links?
The benefits shared above are as true of no follow links as do follow ones. So, if you can achieve a two-birds-one-stone situation, this should always be the preferred course of action.
Write Well-Researched Content
The more research goes into your work, the more trustworthy it becomes. When journalists and other bloggers are looking for other sources to link to, your blog becomes a useful resource with no additional work from you.
Use Guest Blogging Opportunities
There is no guarantee that you’ll get do follow links when you guest blog, but it never hurts to ask. While you may file the “nos” into a box, remember not to set them aside completely as they do bring benefits beyond direct SEO value.
Are specific competitors beating you out for certain search results? The reason may come down to more than just the links they receive, but it’s worth looking into. Use tools to find out who is linking to their website and then offer your own website as an alternative option via email outreach.
Securing do follow links from reputable websites is just one small part of a holistic SEO and marketing campaign. To fill in the rest of the blanks, you may need to partner with a professional SEO company.
While making a decision on who to work with or partner with, consider Boostability. We are an award-winning and leading white label SEO company serving clients and partners all across the globe. Contact us today for more information on how to get started or learn what you can expect in a white label SEO program like ours here!