Internal linking is one of the most often neglected link building tactics in SEO marketing. So what is Internal Link ? Does Internal Link have a direct impact on Website SEO? I will answer it right away in this article.
What are internal links?
Internal Link (internal link) is a link from one website to another on the same website. Internal links are commonly used in navigation.
Users use Internal Links to navigate through your site and find what they’re looking for. Search engines also use Internal Links to navigate your website.
What are external links?
External Link , also known as external link, has two forms: Inbound Link and Outbound Link. Inbound Links are links pointing to your website, also known as backlinks. Outbound Links are links that point from your website to another website.
However, when it comes to External Link , it is implied that the link from your website points to other websites on the Internet.
Importance of internal linking for SEO
Building an Internal Link Strategy is very important in SEO. So what are the benefits of internal linking?
Direct influence on SEO keyword rankings
To achieve the highest SEO efficiency from Internal Link , you should link to these sites to help the website rank higher..
- Pages with high authority, receive a lot of trust and credibility from Google. Among them, the homepage is the highest rated page. (You can link from the homepage to other pages to spread authority and strengthen the linked pages.)
- Pages that benefit from receiving authority over others. These are the pages that have been ranked, but the position is not high, so they need to receive more prestige to rank high. (You can use Ahrefs’ Best by Link feature to check where your site is getting the best backlinks from.)
These are easy, free and fast internal links. On the other hand, it can also make a difference in rankings and traffic.
Here’s the process to find both types of pages above, creating the best internal linking opportunities for your website.
Search for the most authoritative site
You can use an SEO tool like Moz or Google Search Console to check which sites have the highest authority.
In Moz will display all your web pages, ranked in order of Page Authority . Links from higher authority sites will be the ones with the most potential to help you rank. These are the pages you should link to.
>>Learn more: What is Domain Authority ? Distinguish Domain Authority (DA) and Page Authority (PA)
For Google Search Console, just go to Links > Internal Links . Pages with more links will have more authority.
Searching for a website that is about to rank high
You can use Google Analytics to find out which websites are about to rank high. All you need to do is analyze SEO and find websites that are ranking close to the top 10 or top 5 right in the search results.
Go to Acquisition > Search Engine Optimization > Queries. If you don’t get a lot of traffic from search, you can simply set a longer date range to get more data.
Create an advanced filter to see queries that are outside the top 10. Now, pay attention to the queries that are at the top of page 2.
Sort by average position. Here is a list of queries that are close to being ranked high.
Go to Google search each query to confirm the ranking and find the corresponding page. If you’re having trouble finding a query in your search results, don’t try to focus on it, but move on to the next query.
The SEMrush tool makes it easier to get data. You just need to go to Domain Analytics > Organic Research > Organic Search Positions. You will see a ranking list of queries.
In addition, you should also pay attention to the rightmost column. This report will show sites that are ranked that Google Search Console doesn’t have.
Links from high authority pages to other sites
From a high authority site, you just need to create a link anywhere in the content to a near high ranking page.
Use the right keywords in the anchor text of the link.
For example, a link with the anchor text “how to use Yoast SEO” indicates that the page is about using the Yoast SEO plugin.
Keyword-focused anchor text is better than “read more” or “click here” anchor text .
Does Google care about keywords in anchor text? Maybe yes. It was suggested by John Mueller on Twitter…
Links should provide more context through Anchor Text.
See more patent documents:
Internal Links should be created naturally, bringing a lot of value to the reader, not just for rankings. Anything you do for the sake of SEO, without regard to user experience is considered spam by Google.
Kevin Indig’s Guide to Internal Linking:
Importance of Internal Links for Search Ranking
Direct users to high-conversion websites
Websites that attract a lot of traffic are usually the ones that rank high or are shared a lot. These are considered as traffic champion sites .
Websites inspire visitors to take action. In content marketing, they do a great job of converting visitors into subscribers. These are your conversion champions .
Find the site with the most traffic
Use Google Analytics to check which websites attract the most traffic.
- Truy cập Behavior > Site Content > Landing Pages.
- Select a date range from 3-6 months.
At this point, Google Analytics will output a report of the most viewed pages and arrange them in order. Here is a list of your traffic champions.
Note: When you look at the list of sites with the most traffic, be sure to rule out spikes in traffic due to PR or email campaigns.
Which website inspires action the most?
Use Google Analytics to find the pages with the highest conversion rates.
Note: If you see mostly outliers and extremely low numbers, add a filter. Here, you can see I’m just looking at landing pages that drive 5+ conversions.
If you want to do more precise, detailed analysis, you can connect Google Analytics to Google Sheets . Just follow the detailed instructions.
Links from traffic champions to conversion champions
Link from high-traffic sites to high-conversion sites. The more people click on this link, the faster your email list will grow. So turn it into a specific, compelling call to action.
Call to action – Calls to action of the user
Your goal in marketing is to get customers to visit, make strong marketing claims, support these claims with evidence, and then drive action.
At this point, Internal Link will be an effective Call To Action navigation tool
Look at the bottom of any marketing article:
- What is the last line of text?
- Is there an action visitor suggestion?
- Is there support?
- To start a conversation or not?
- Or does the page just suddenly end?
Here are some examples of internal links that you can place at the bottom of your marketing articles that act as calls to action.
It is these little internal links that help you generate leads.
Types of Internal Links
There are 2 types: Internal Link navigation and contextual.
Navigational Internal Link
Navigational Internal Links are internal links used to navigate users, making it easier for them to find what they’re looking for.
To help users find information quickly, websites often place this information in the Menu, footer or a sidebar. The simpler the placement of important information, the better the user experience.
Contextual Internal Link
Contextual Internal Links are contextual internal links, usually placed within the main content of a web page. These are links that point to other pages with related topics.
In particular, to attract the reader’s attention, you can highlight the links by bolding or coloring to stimulate clicks. At that time, the user will be redirected to a new relevant page that they want.
Understanding the function of different types of Internal Links will help you build the right link strategy for your SEO project.
Guide to optimizing Internal Link effectively
Step 1: Identify Pillar pages that need to optimize Internal Links to get to the top
Categorizing Pillar pages for Internal Link optimization is the first step in an effective Internal Link optimization process. These Pillar sites are usually those that contain keywords with high search volume.
After determining the landing page to be optimized, your task is to determine the Topic and keywords to plan the content.
Step 2: List the main topics and keywords that need to be optimized Internal Link
Pillar pages are built around a main theme of the website. This is considered a landing page for a certain topic.
Pillar sites consist of Clusters. Clusters will go into depth and clarify what is covered in Pillar.
These clusters will need an Internal Link pointing to the main Pillar site to link and indicate which Pillar site is the main and focus for that topic cluster.
Step 3: Use relevant and appropriate Anchor Text
Should I use the main target keyword to make Anchor Text ? This is a difficult problem for inexperienced SEOers.
Indeed, using the main keyword to make Anchor Text go to Internal Link will not affect SEO efficiency. However, using external links will violate Google’s guidelines and have a certain impact on SEO.
Notes when using Anchor Text for Internal Link:
- Diverse Anchor Text: Using a variety of Anchor Text types will help the article look more natural than just using the main keyword Anchor Text.
- Anchor Text Length: Using variations of your main keyword in line with user trends will increase the ranking of the page you target.
- Relevance: Use related anchor texts, not necessarily partially matched anchor texts, to increase the naturalness of the article.
>> Suggestions for further reading: What is Anchor Text ? What is the appropriate density of anchor text?
Step 4: Accurately identify all permissions on the website
The most authoritative sites are those with a lot of external links. You can pass the power of these links to other pages through Internal Links. Use the SEMrush tool for proper link analysis and interstrategy.
Step 5: Use Internal Link to increase the ranking of the target pages
In this step, all you need to do is lead Internal Links from the highest authority pages to the target pages you want to promote. Make sure the internal linking pages are relevant to your target page.
>>Read more: What is Link Juice ? Guide to optimizing the flow of Link Juice power with Internal Link
Step 6: Optimize new content with Internal Link
If your website does not have many links yet, you can refer to high authority websites to generate relevant links to promote effective SEO.
You can do Google searches with keywords included in your content to find and link to related pages. It is recommended to use 2-3 Internal Links from high authority sites for new pages.
Instructions for using Internal Link to increase rankings on Google
Internal Link optimization principles you need to know
Place Internal Links at sites with lots of quality Backlinks
Placing Internal Links on pages with lots of quality backlinks will help your website get a lot of power and prestige. From there, Google will evaluate and rank your website highly.
>>Reference: Quality backlinks and what? The role of quality backlinks in SEO
Number of Internal Links and websites pointing to Website
Here are 4 principles for effective Internal Link optimization that need to be firmly grasped:
- All Internal Links point to the homepage.
- The Internal Link must point to the Category page that contains it and the other Categories.
- Take the Internal Link pointing to the articles before and after it.
- Internal Link must point to itself.
You need to firmly grasp and follow these principles to ensure a more uniform DR index between pages, increase Page Authority and increase effective Index speed.
Set Links that match the user’s search behavior
Each type of Internal Link will have a different way of placing links to suit each article. Do not cram Internal Links, instead set Internal Links according to user search behavior . From there, improve user experience as well as better keyword rankings.
How to check the Website’s Internal Link
To assess the internal link status of a website, you can use the SEMrush tool. After entering the domain name, the SEMrush report will display all the existing Internal Links on your website.
The SEMrush report gives you 5 elements:
- Depth of page crawl
- Internal Links (internal links)
- Internal Link Distribution
- Internal link related issues
- Websites that exceed internal Link Rank
Extracting the SEMrush report gives you a comprehensive view of the internal links on your website. Thereby, you can plan and optimize Internal Link effectively for the entire website.
Common problems with Internal Link
Broken links are those that show a 404 error.
This error usually occurs when the Internal Link is broken, causing users and google to be directed to a website that does not exist.
To fix this, it’s best to remove or replace it with another link that points to a working page.
Link is broken and can’t be crawled
Incorrect URLs are inserted into the link causing the link to fail and be uncrawlable.
This problem occurs when the URL contains unnecessary characters. To fix the problem, you just need to reformat the broken links.
Putting too many Internal Links on the page
If your site has too many Internal Links, you’ll see those links flagged in the sites report. In fact, there is no rule that limits the number of Internal Links.
If you over-optimize it can affect your site’s ranking. Especially when pointing to unrelated Internal Links.
You can fix the problem by auditing your website, looking for pages with more than 3000 links, and removing them.
Do you know?
Internal Links with rel=”nofollow” attribute will limit the flow of Link Juice power in your website.
You can remove the nofollow attribute from flagged Internal Links to fix this.
Click Depth exceeds 3 Click
A page with Click Depth more than 3 times will make Google think this is an unimportant site and will not rank highly for that site.
You should put important pages where only 2-3 Click Depth maximum to help Google quickly Index and rank the website.
Internal Links help increase website authority, improve click-through rates, and boost rankings through the influence of ranking factors like Click depth and page importance.
Each page has only one Internal Link
You should not optimize too many Internal Links on a page, too little optimization should not.
Therefore, you must plan so that Internal Link is placed appropriately, bringing value to users to rank top better and more sustainably,
301 redirect (full redirect)
Completely redirecting internal links will help Google save crawl budget, especially large sites.
The way to fix this situation is to regularly update the Internal Links to direct users and Google to the target page. You can remove the 301 redirect if the page has a lot of traffic.
Chain and loop redirects
Internal Links that redirect chains and loops cause problems for crawlers.
The way to fix this problem is to update the Internal Links and direct users and Google to the right website you want.
Redirect HTTPS to HTTP
If you misplace URLs that point to HTTP pages at secure sites, they will cause unnecessary redirects.
To check for this, try updating any HTTP links that point to an HTTPS site
Frequently asked questions about Internal Link
Compare Internal Link and External Link
Internal Link (internal link) is a link that points from one website to another on the same website. Unlike Internal Link, External Link is pointing from your website to other reputable websites outside.
Why are internal links important?
Internal links help Google understand and rank your site better. Internal linking, on the other hand, provides the best user experience and can improve engagement.
How many Internal Links should be optimized on a page?
While there’s no rule on the number of internal links on a page, Google says that it can crawl 100 links per page. Therefore, you need to optimize the appropriate and relevant Internal Links to bring value to users and be ranked higher by Google.
How to find internal linking opportunities on the site?
One of the best ways to find internal linking opportunities is to find pages on your site that are already ranking for relevant topics and go for Internal Links pointing to the target page with the right anchor text.
Above is all the knowledge related to what Internal Link is as well as how to build an effective Internal Link strategy. It can be said that internal linking is one of the factors that help a website rank high and sustainably on search engines, provided that the link is not manipulated. Because your website will be penalized by Google if you do that.