Nofollow links are exactly what the name implies: they are links that have a nofollow attribute.
Mostly, they prevent search engines from following and attributing standard PageRank value to a link.
This was put in place by Google to prevent spammers from gaming the system by building links en masse in an attempt to improve their own SEO.
What Are Nofollow Links?
Nofollow links are HTML attributes that tell search engines not to follow or credit a link with PageRank value.
They look like this:
<a href="http://example.com" rel="nofollow">Anchor text</a>
The nofollow attribute can be added to an entire website, section of a website, or individual links within a page by using either the
rel=”nofollow” HTML ahref tag attribute.
A nofollow link does not pass along any SEO “link juice” or PageRank value from one website to another.
Nofollow links are used on many popular websites, such as Wikipedia, to keep spammers from adding links to low quality or irrelevant sites in an attempt to improve their own SEO.
Nofollow Links and Outbound Links
When it comes to outbound links, most SEO experts agree that they should be treated as nofollow links. This is because giving away link juice to an external website can hurt your own website’s SEO.
However, there are some exceptions to this rule. If you are linking to a high quality website that is relevant to your niche, then it may be beneficial to give away link juice.
Link juice is the power or authority that a website has. This power is passed along to other websites when they are linked to. By giving away link juice, you are essentially vouching for the quality of the linked-to website.
Should You Use Nofollow Links?
Whether or not you should use nofollow links depends on your individual website and goals. If you are worried about giving away link juice or being associated with low quality websites, then you may want to consider using nofollow links.
If you are linking to high quality websites that are relevant to your niche, then you may want to forego the nofollow attribute and give away link juice. Ultimately, the decision is up to you and should be based on what is best for your website.
How Do Nofollow Links Affect SEO?
Nofollow links can have a small effect on SEO, but it is generally thought that they carry very little weight. Google has stated that they “treat links with the nofollow attribute as hints rather than directives.” This means that while Google may not follow the link, they may still take it into account when determining the quality of a website.
Some SEO experts believe that nofollow links can help improve a website’s organic search ranking by showing Google that the site is being linked to by high quality websites.
While there is no solid evidence to support this claim, it is possible that Google does take into account the overall quality of a website when determining its ranking.
First, They Can Diversify Your Overall Link Profile
Not all links are created equal. In the world of SEO, we tend to think of links as either being “good” or “bad.”
Good links are those that come from high-quality websites in your niche. These links can help improve your organic search ranking and bring in targeted traffic.
Bad links, on the other hand, are those that come from low-quality websites or spammy websites. These links can actually hurt your SEO and should be avoided.
Nofollow links provide a way to diversify your link profile and create a healthy mix of both good and bad links.
This is important because it shows Google that you are getting links from a variety of different sources. A link profile that is too heavily weighted towards one type of link (good or bad) can actually hurt your SEO.
For example, if you have one link profile for a site that has a bunch of nofollow links, this is not good.
Also, most of the links you get from these places are all likely nofollowed:
Any links from a social network (such as Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
- Most forums like Quora, Reddit, and others.
- Guestbooks (this harkens back to the days of 1998 link building),
Having a suspiciously high percentage of links that are followed looks fishy to Google and they might suspect some link manipulation is going on.
Some diversity is good – you don’t want to ignore one type of link just because.
Nofollow Links Can Drive Traffic
Just because a link is nofollowed doesn’t mean it can’t drive traffic to your website.
In fact, nofollow links can actually be quite effective at driving traffic if they are placed on high-quality websites that are relevant to your niche.
For example, let’s say you have a website about gardening. A nofollow link on a high-quality website about gardening would likely drive some targeted traffic to your website.
This is because people who are interested in gardening are likely to click on a link about gardening, even if it is nofollowed.
Additionally, sites like Quora are nofollowed and they have tons of traffic.
If you can get your links placed on high-traffic websites, you will likely see some traffic coming to your website, even if the links are nofollowed.
But, because Quora links are nofollowed, there is no direct impact on SEO results because of that nofollow.
It can happen that if people like your answers on Quora, they can link to your site as a result.
Just because a site has nofollow is not always a reason to decline participating (or otherwise linking).
Nofollow vs. Dofollow Links — What’s the Actual Difference?
When it comes to links on a website, there are two types: dofollow and nofollow. Dofollow links are the standard type of link, where the site that is linking to you is passing along some of its authority to you. There is no actual attribute named dofollow, however – it’s just a standard link. And anyone who tries to tell you otherwise is trying to peddle snake oil SEO.
Nofollow links, meanwhile, are created when a website wants to link to another site but doesn’t want to pass along any authority. And there is a specific attribute for this that you add to a link.
The difference between these two types of links is important to understand, especially if you are trying to increase the authority of your website. In this article, we’ll take a look at what nofollow links are and how they differ from dofollow links.
Nofollow links are a type of link that don’t give away any authority to the website you’re linking to. They’re created when a website wants to link to another site but doesn’t want to pass along any of its own authority. This is important to understand if you want your website to be more popular, because nofollow links don’t help with that.
In general, dofollow links are better for your website because they help you gain authority. However, there are some situations where nofollow links can be helpful. For example, if you’re getting a lot of spammy comments on your blog, adding the nofollow attribute to those links can help discourage that behavior.
At the end of the day, it’s up to you whether you want to add nofollow links to your website. If you’re not sure what is best for your site, talk to an SEO expert or consultant who can give you more site-specific advice.
Nofollow Link Options for Google
There are several types of nofollow link options for Google. They came about when Google expanded on their nofollow rules. The original nofollow rule was that if a website has the nofollow attribute set on a link, Google would not follow that link. This meant that the website being linked to would not get any authority from the link.
The new nofollow rules give website owners more control over which links Google follows and which ones it doesn’t. There are three types of nofollow links now:
Links with the rel=”nofollow” attributes – These are the traditional nofollow links. If a website has this attribute set on a link, Google will not follow that link.
Links with the rel=”sponsored” attributes – These are sponsored links. If a website has this attribute set on a link, Google will not follow that link. However, they may still use the link to help determine the context of the page.
Links with the rel=”ugc” attributes – These are user-generated content links. If a website has this attribute set on a link, Google will not follow that link. However, they may still use the link to help determine the context of the page.
It’s important to understand these options so that you know exactly what you can and cannot do for these links.
When in Doubt, Nofollow That Link
If you’re not sure about a link, and whether you want to present that as a potential link of value in Google’s eyes, you can always use nofollow.
Nofollow links are a great way to discourage spammy behavior and keep your website looking clean. However, they don’t help with SEO like normal links do. In general, it’s best to stick with normal links whenever possible. Making sure you create a natural link profile is important, because this will pass Google’s algorithm checks and make sure that your links don’t fall under penalty for too much manipulation.
If you’re still not sure what is best for your site, talk to an SEO expert or consultant who can give you more specific advice.