How internal links help boost your website’s search rankings
It is important to consider the contribution that internal links make to your website’s search rankings.
While external links are treated as higher traffic generating links, it is also important to know the capability of internal links when it comes to traffic and conversion.
Also Read, How to increase website traffic
Internal links are really helpful in your content’s success.
If you don’t have a proper internal linking structure, you are surely losing out on gaining better conversion rates and enhanced user experience.
But internal links need proper structure and a planned approach.
Before we move into this, lets first know exactly what internal links are.
What are internal links and how they will benefit you?
Internal links are links which direct users to different pages of your website.
Internal links can be present in any of the following structures:
- Footer navigation;
- Header navigation;
- Sidebar navigation;
- Within the content (articles, blogs);
- Within the images.
You must be aware of the navigation menu present in most of the sites.
When you click on that menu, a down-slide opens in which you’ll see different pages of the website.
Like, contact us page, about us page, blogs page and so on.
When you click on any of the pages, you’ll be directed straight to that page.
Similarly, you must have seen anchored and highlighted text in articles, on different websites.
This is also an internal linking method where, when you click on the highlighted text, you’ll be redirected to a page or an article on the same website.
Internal links will interlink your website in such a way that:
- It becomes easy for the readers to jump to pages they like.
- Your site’s structure becomes easily readable and understandable for the web crawlers.
Internal links can help you rank higher, especially for certain keywords.
But you need a proper linking structure, in order to make your SEO successful.
Consider these 3 things while building up your internal links structure:
1. Planning your basic internal link structure.
The best practice to do, while building up a structure for internal linking is determining the primary pages of your website which are popular and are well optimized.
Then make these pages as your linking hub.
Similarly, make your most popular article, as your linking hub, to other articles.
This will help you gain more eyes on the pages which are not so popular.
Whenever you publish new content, remember to link it to pages on your website, which match its topic.
Also, never forget to add internal links of previously published articles, in new articles.
For successfully linking to pages and articles on your website, you need to optimize it properly.
Follow these 3 steps to optimize your links properly:
- The anchored or highlighted text should include relevant keywords which match the content or page you are linking to.
- The content, before and after the anchored text should be supportive of it and, should be relevant.
- The page you link to, should elaborate and expand the existing content.
For example, your primary, linking hub article could be – ’10 tips for enhancing creative writing’.
And, the article you want to link to could be – ’10 tips for creating great poetry’.
So, the anchor text and surrounding text could be,
‘Creative writing can be enhanced through different forms of writing. Creating great poetry can enhance your creative writing skills greatly.’
The underlined text is the link to your previous article.
See how this example comprises of all the three factors of optimization. The keywords are apt, the surrounding text is supportive, and the linked article clearly enhances the existing content.
The anchored text should be a short description, of the article you are linking to.
2.Planning keyword based internal link structure.
This internal linking structure can help you rank higher for specific keywords.
First choose the specific keyword phrase and the page you want to rank higher in, for that keyword.
If you are selling a product, you can choose your product name as your keyword phrase.
And, the buying page for that product can be the page you link to the keyword phrase.
This work for content-only pages as well. You can simply choose a specific keyword to link to an article related to that keyword.
Use the keyword-based anchor phrase in as many articles as possible to rank the page which is linked, higher.
But, avoid being spammy. Use the keyword phrase in a way which appears to be relevant in the text.
Your keyword could be same every time, but try changing your anchor phrase that surrounds your keyword.
Also, try modifying your previously published content and, add internal links to it.
Google loves modified content and, it can help you rank higher.
By internally linking your products and pages, you can rank higher and higher in the search engine.
3.Planning a topic cluster internal link structure
A topic cluster is simply a cluster of articles which support a single page called the pillar page.
For example, you have created a pillar page named ‘best apps on Android in 2018’.
You can then create several cluster pieces related to the pillar page like, ‘best gaming apps on Android in 2018’, ‘best fitness apps on Android in 2018’, and so on.
Each of the cluster piece article is related to the main topic and, will appear on the pillar page.
There are mainly two types of pillar page you can plan. Those are,
- Resource pillar page. These pages contain both internal and external links related to the main topic. The sole goal is to provide value to the readers, be it from an outside source.
- 10x pillar page. 10x is a new SEO term which means, you believe that your content can provide the best value of the main topic, rather than any outside source. This page will only contain internal links.
This internal linking structure is very effective.
This will help your pillar page to rank higher.
Similarly, this internal linking structure eases the user experience on your website.
They can jump straight to what they want rather than going through the whole thing.
Internal links that link to different pages of your website, can help users navigate easily within your site.
Proper strategic execution of internal linking structures can increase your search engine ranking, big time!
Also Read, How to Rank in Google featured snippets.
You can increase your conversion rate and lead generation through this amazing SEO strategy.
Derek Luise is working as a Jr. content writer and blogger with Ranking By SEO. He can be seen blogging about digital marketing, link building, SEO, SMO, PPC, etc.