The Power of Internal Linking

internal-linking-illustration

One of the things that helps a page come up in the search results of Google is links that point to it. A link is any text or image on a webpage which, when clicked on takes the user to the “linked” page. A page with a lot of good links pointing to it tells Google that this page is important and therefore should be considered as a good answer to related search queries.

There are two kinds of links that can point to a page on your website:

Internal links and External links.

In this article we are focussing on internal links and why should you add internal links to your blog posts.

What Are Internal Links?

Internal links are the links that connect one page of the website with another page on the same website. In other words, it is the linking of pages with each other on the same domain. These internal links help users to navigate and find related content. Search engines use these links to navigate your site as well.

Here is a simple illustration:

This is a snippet from our blog: https://halodigital.com.au/what-is-local-seo/
The term in the image above “Search engine optimisation” is what we call an anchor text. The anchor text contains the URL of the related post where you want the user or search engine to be directed.  Once a user clicks “Search engine optimisation” he/she is directed to https://halodigital.com.au/seo-perth/

Why is internal linking important for your blog posts?

The main purpose of internal links is to provide easy, relevant navigation for the user and search engine. They also define the site architecture and pass link value around. Let’s take a detailed look at the importance of internal linking.

Internal Links help Google discover new content on the website

Google says:
Google must constantly search for new pages and add them to its list of known pages. Some pages are known because Google has already crawled them before. Other pages are discovered when Google follows a link from a known page to a new page.”

When new content is published Google prefers to crawl them via a known page. Internal linking a new post with an old one makes it easier for Google to navigate. And if a page gets lots of links, this sends a signal to Google that is of high value. Internal Links improve user experience and reduce bounce rates

Internal linking helps users to navigate from one page to another.

If you use proper, relevant and user-friendly anchor texts, this eases the user navigation journey. The anchor texts should be pointing to such content which aids the curiosity of the reader if they want to read related content. For example, you wrote a post about strategies to improve onsite SEO. If the article contains an anchor text “Tools to help you with onsite SEO audit”, this will help the user.

If you interlink your current article with another related post, it improves the chances that the reader visits it. This helps to improve the dwell time on the website and in turn reduce the bounce rate.

Internal Links help to boost rankings of the webpages

Each webpage on your site has a link value, usually termed as Page Rank. Internally linking a new page (no link value) with an existing page (some link value) ensures that this link value passes on from the old page to the new page as Google crawls it via the link.

In most cases, the homepage has the highest link value. The higher the link value, the greater the chance of that web page ranking higher in Google. Now, the homepage passes this link value on to the other links present. This is why having newer posts displayed on the home page is recommended. It helps Google to find them quicker.

Internal Links help to establish topical relevance

If your post is internally linking to other related posts and vice versa, this can form a topical cluster or silo.

Google uses Google bot to crawl your website. If this Google bot arrives on a page of your website, goes to another related page via an anchor text and from there maybe to another page, along this journey, the Google Bot can figure out the relevancy between pages and posts. Hence it knows which cluster of pages talk about similar topics. This topical relevancy helps improve your rankings for related search terms in the search results.

What are the good practises of internal linking that we follow at Halo Digital?

At Halo Digital, we make sure to stay updated with the current recommended SEO practises. Internal linking has helped us achieve rankings and results for our projects.

Here are few of our internal linking practises that we follow to optimise websites.

Proper and strategic silo structure to pass link value for the important pages

To optimise your service/money page, we follow a proper silo structure. If you have a service page that you want to rank for, we create blog posts covering different aspects about that service which are focussed on user-search intent. Then, the cluster of these blog posts point a link to the main service page as well as these are interlinked with each other. This improves topical relevance, boosts ranking and helps Google discover new posts. The image below gives a basic glimpse into the internal linking framework.

Simple Website Silo Structure

Strategic placement of anchor texts 

We make sure to use anchor texts strategically for internal linking. Google uses the anchor text for relevancy of the content as well as identifies it as a potential keyword which may improve ranking. It is beneficial to place the keyword-rich anchor text at the start of the post as the Google bot crawls the web page from top to bottom.

Avoiding over Optimisation while internal linking

The internal links should look natural to Google. It should not appear as if you are just optimising it for the search engine.

So, it is not recommended to go on interlinking with the same term over and over again. You should use long-tail keywords for internal linking too. There is no exact rule about this, but a general rule of thumb is: 

The anchor text should be 50% partial match, 50% generic for internal links and no two anchor texts used should be the same in a post.

Keep looking for new internal linking opportunities each month

Since SEO is a monthly recurring process, we keep looking for new internal linking opportunities each month.

With the new blog posts each month, there are several new opportunities to link them to the service page and with each other. We keep a database that is segmented according to topical relevance which makes our internal linking process efficient.

Summary

Internal linking is a powerful way to show Google what pages are important on your website. So, next time you write a blog post on your website, be sure to naturally link to other relevant pages on your site.

Does your website make the most of internal linking? If you’re not sure we may be able to help. Enquire today about our monthly SEO services and how they can help grow your business.

Ankit is an On Page SEO specialist at Halo Digital. He has over 5 years experience in digital marketing and working with top global brands across a range of digital disciplines including keyword research, schema, tracking, data and analytics. He has a passion for learning more in his field and spends his spare time experimenting with the Google Algorithm with his own test websites.

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