Any small business person or entrepreneur who has been at it long enough knows that SEO, or search engine optimization, is a combination of many elements: keywords, tags, meta descriptions, linking, fresh content, etc. Do all of them right, and your website will be easily found during a search. And therein lies the rub – it’s hard to do everything right and keep up with SEO!
Well, there is a silver lining to SEO, and it’s called internal linking. As you might guess from the name, an internal link connects one page on your website to another, thus making it easier for search engines and people to find the information they are looking for on a given subject. (If you want to get technical, we can say that it boosts page authority and ranking and spreads all of this goodness around your website.)
There’s another silver lining: Doing internal linking well is not that hard. Here’s how to turbocharge your SEO with internal linking:
Add useful and relevant links everywhere you can
The more internal links you have, the better, but you need a lot of content to create a lot of links. You probably already know what topics you want to be found for, so focus on writing blog posts around those topics. As you create more content on each topic, start linking blog posts on similar topics to each other, but only add links if they will take your reader to useful and relevant information.
Remember that If you add links for the sake of adding links, your efforts will backfire. That’s because search engines reward relevance. If no one is clicking on your links, that sends a signal to search engines that those links are not relevant.
Be smart about how many links you do add
Google very unhelpfully says that links should be kept to a reasonable number. The definition of reasonable is up to interpretation, so just be smart about how many links you do add to any given page. Remember, they need to be useful and relevant. If one blog post has 5 links and another has 2, that’s OK.
Use descriptive anchor text
I see a lot of links that look something like this: “Click here to read more about it.” A better strategy uses descriptive anchor text – aka, keywords and phrases – like this: “You can read more about the basics of SEO here.”
Avoid links to high-level pages
It’s natural to want to link to the Contact Us page to convert your website visitors into leads, but you should really be linking to pages or blogs posts that are deeper within your site. So on a product or service page, you could link to a few blog posts that cover the topic. In a blog post, link to other blog posts or a service page.
Do you diligently practice internal linking? How has it helped your SEO?
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