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Should You Add NoFollow To External Links?

add nofollow external links

Are you wondering whether or not you should add nofollow on external Links of your website? If yes, then you need not worry or stress yourself over it. That’s because we’ll be sharing with you everything you need to know about utilizing nofollow on external links of your website.

What Is Nofollow?

Links are essential ingredients for a good SEO score. To build an effective and strong SEO strategy, you’ll need to understand the differences between the internal and external links. However, for the sake of this post, we’ll be focusing on the external links, emphasizing more on nofollow.

No doubt, nofollow seems to be the cause of most issues in the SEO industry. That’s because most people don’t deeply understand when to apply it in their SEO copy.

So, what are nofollow links?

They are the links with a rel=”nofollow” HTML tag attached to them. It tells search engines not to follow a specific outbound link. How does that feel? Well, you need not feel bad about that because there’s also a benefit to using it.

No Benefits Of Using Nofollow On External Links

If nofollow tells search engines not to count links for SERP, why then do people use it?

Well, the days when nofollow links used to have a lot of benefits to your site might be over. According to Google’s John Mueller during last year’s Google Webmaster central hangouts, there are no benefits to using nofollow on external links of your website. This response came following a question asked during the section:

“What do you think about the practice of some big publishers tagging all outgoing links with rel=nofollow?

Without mincing words, Mueller replied by saying that it’s wrong to adopt such an approach. Furthermore, he stated that the approach will have a long-term negative effect on your website. Here is what he said:

“So that’s definitely wrong. It’s definitely not the case that if you use normal links on your website that you would rank any worse than if you put nofollow on all outgoing links. I suspect it’s even, on the contrary, that if you have normal linking on your page then you would probably rank a little bit better over time – essentially because we can see that you’re part of the normal web ecosystem. So it’s definitely not the case that you have any kind of ranking advantage by marking all outgoing links as nofollow.”

He also acknowledged that most publishers settle on using nofollow on external links to their websites because they want to feel safe. However, they can feel safe trusting their content. Let’s have a look at what he said in the hangouts’ section:

“I understand not knowing which links you can trust. But essentially, if you’re a news publisher, you should trust what you’re writing about. Or you should be able to understand which part of the content that you write about is the actual content that you want to have indexed–that you want to stand for. If these are things that you want to stand for then make sure you have normal links on there.”

Since you now have a reason not to use nofollow on external links to your website, you must be wondering how to check for your nofollow links. Here is a simple instruction on how you can check your content for nofollow links.

How To Check For Nofollow Links

Checking for nofollow links is not difficult to do. All you need to do is follow the steps below:

  • Right-click your browser and click on the View Page Source icon.
  • Then proceed to look for the link in the page’s HTML view.
  • By seeing rel=”nofollow”, you should know that it’s a nofollow link.
  • Otherwise, the link is do-follow.

However, if you don’t want to go manual, you can use the Strike Out Nofollow Links Chrome extension. It’s handy, effective, and also easy to use.

About the author

Jike Eric

Jike Eric has completed his degree program in Chemical Engineering. Jike covers Business and Tech news on Insider Paper.

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