A Beginner’s Guide to NoFollow and DoFollow LinksAuthor: Jamie | Filed under: Guides for Beginners, Link Building
When it comes to link building, the terms “NoFollow” and “DoFollow” are often used. If you’re not sure what these mean, keep reading to find out.
NoFollow basically means if you have a link coming into your site or going out from your site, the search engines will not pass on any benefit.
Here’s what Matt Cutts from Google said about NoFollow links:
“Google does not transfer PageRank or anchor text across these links. Essentially, using nofollow causes us to drop the target links from our overall graph of the web”
So for example, let’s say you had a NoFollow link from Wikipedia to your website; your site wouldn’t get any benefit from it in terms of improving your search engine rankings.
Using NoFollow on your own website
Obviously you can’t control how people use NoFollow links on their own websites, but you can on yours.
Using NoFollow links on your website can deliver a number of benefits:
1) Put off spammers
It’s wise to have NoFollow implemented for blog comments in order to put off spammers. If your blog is DoFollow, you’ll probably be inundated with spam comments trying to steal away some of your site’s PageRank.
2) Controlling what pages are indexed by the search engines
You may not want every page of your website indexed by the search engines. For example, you may have a page with lots of technical information from manufacturers you use. In cases like this, you can use the NoFollow command on links to the pages you’d rather not have indexed.
3) Protecting your site’s reputation
You don’t want to pass any of your PageRank to any old Tom, Dick or Harry. When you’ve worked hard to build up a good reputation for your site in the search engines, NoFollow links help you keep your good authority score.
Below is an example of how the NoFollow instruction looks in a website’s code.
<a href=”http://www.yourdomainname.com” rel=”nofollow”>Anchor Text</a>
Useful NoFollow tool
If you use Firefox, Chrome, Opera or Safari as your browser, you can download SEO Quake which is a free tool that tells you whether or not a site’s links are NoFollow.
This is useful information when looking for links back to your own site. There’s little point in spending days on creating incoming NoFollow links which will be ignored by Google.
DoFollow links are the opposite of NoFollow links in that they are counted by Google and pass PageRank and anchor text from one site to another.
These are the kinds of links you want coming into your website from other relevant authority sites in your niche.
There’s no website code as such for DoFollow links. If a site doesn’t have any NoFollow coding, then the links on that page will automatically be classed as DoFollow links.
In an ideal world every website would just have incoming DoFollow links and no NoFollow links at all. However, it’s not an ideal world, so don’t get too upset if you have a number of NoFollow links too. Having a balance demonstrates a natural link building approach and not all links are just about passing PageRank, they can be good for sending visitors to your site too.
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