No Follow In Links
No Follow is a command you can put on any link you create to control whether or not the page rank where the link resides stays on that particular page.
OK, let's break down what the no follow command is, why you want to use it, and how it works. This is a pretty basic SEO tactic that's frequently used, but is really poorly understood by folks who have never done SEO.
What Does No Follow Mean?
Imagine that you have had your website up for a number of years, and you've added some content to it, and you've updated some of your pages. In particular, there's one or two pages that rank fairly high pretty consistently, and receives targeted traffic from search engines, particularly Google.
Now imagine that you get some unsolicited emails from other webmasters, asking if you would be willing to put a link on those particular pages that will lead visitors to a page on their domain.
Suppose you are willing to do this, but you understand that by doing so, some of the high ranking that those pages get in Google search results could be watered down by you simply putting those links on the pages to the other site.
You're pretty much inclined to not do this, because you know getting pages ranked high in search results is really tough, and while you're a pretty nice person, you don't want to give up any ranking for these pages.
If you want to be a nice person by putting that link on your highly ranked page, but you don't want to lose any Google love the page is getting in search rankings, then you can apply the "no follow" tag on the link itself.
No follow simply means that the search engine crawlers, upon seeing this tag, will NOT allow any of the page rank to FOLLOW any links you have on that page, to other domains.
Now, your human visitors never see this tag. It's in the source code. It looks like this:
<a href=”https://www.website.com/” rel=”nofollow”>Link Text</a>
By using this tag, you are telling the search engines to not let Google ranking love, Google link vote love FOLLOW the link.
Now that we've set the stage, let's talk about the Google Page Rank (PR).
Internally within the search algorithm, Google has assigned a page rank to your pages. It can go from 0 to 10, but you're never going to see what it is. You used to be able to see it up until 2013, but not anymore. In general, the higher the Google page rank (PR), the better your pages show up in search engine results pages (SERP).
On pages like these, if you put links on them that point to external domains, you could lose some of that page rank, because it will FOLLOW the link to the other domain.
How much will the page lose? We don't know. It doesn't really matter. If you want to keep all the ranking or "Google Juice" as it's also known as, then use the rel = no follow for your links to other sites.
Want to know more about how to safely link out to other sites as well as basic and advanced search engine optimization? Let Invenio SEO train you on the latest processes, techniques and strategies to get your site's web pages and blog posts to rank higher in search results.
You now have the option of taking our Basics of SEO class online.
Until we meet next time, keep it safely between the ditches!
All the very best to you,