Links play an important role in search engine optimization (SEO). There are two kinds of links that can impact search engine rankings: internal and external links. Both links between pages of your website (internal links) and links to other websites (external links) perform a vital function in helping bring visitors to your website, as well as allowing users to easily navigate between pages.
Together, internal and external links can create a better user experience and improve communication with search engines. If you are trying to drive more traffic to your website and increase your search engine rankings, here’s a few notes on how internal and external links are instrumental.
Internal Links within Your Website
Internal links take you between pages within the same website or domain. They can help users navigate different pages of your site. For example, a link back to your homepage or to another page on your website from a blog would be an internal link.
In general, internal links are helpful for keeping visitors on your site for longer as they engage with additional content, as well as for improving site navigation.
Furthermore, internal links can help search engines explore your website, extracting both the links to other pages on your site and to other external websites in order to discover new pages. The more natural internal links you have connecting pages on your site together, the greater chance each individual page of your site has to gain search engine ranking.
Additionally, pages on your site that you link to more frequently have more weight with search engines, so they are more likely to show up in response to a keyword search than other pages on your site.
External Links for Search Rankings
External links are links that bring you to a page in a different website. They can be a great way to build and show connections with websites that are relatable to yours. This can be beneficial because other websites with credibility can further a website’s presence online with an external link. Additionally, if you develop relationships with people that manage credible and popular websites, providing an external link to their website may encourage them to cross-link back to your website.
External links also are helpful for SEO. This is because search engines use backlinks to your site and referring domains to determine your site’s ranking. Since readership can be difficult to measure accurately, search engines use the number and quality of backlinks to your site from other domains to measure your site’s credibility.
One way to check the number of backlinks to your website is to use a tool like SEMrush. They offer a trial of their software that can allow you to see information about your website and competitors. If you want help using SEMrush, it can be helpful to hire an SEO expert or digital marketing agency.
It is important to use external links purposefully. To optimize search engine performance, try to link in moderation to credible sites that give your users good information, and to balance your external links with internal links.
Strategic Linking Online
Both internal and external links are important to website user experience and search engine optimization. When crafting a website, don’t forget to think about how you are using your links, and what content you are linking to.
Effective internal and external links can help users navigate your site and find what they are looking for, guide search engines to all of your pages as they index your site, and increase your search engine ranking. Links are powerful tools, and when used well, they can be integral in driving traffic to your site.