Link Building Yin Yang: Understanding Do-Follow and No-Follow Links
If you’re new to the universe of search engine optimization (SEO), you’ve probably encountered many a terms, some opposing each other, in its cosmos. A standing debate in particular is whether do-follow links are better than no-follow links when it comes to link building. Neither of the camps has waved the white flag yet nor is willing to verbalize that the argument is a stalemate. As such, the answer to which is a better link building technique remains to be seen, although the enthusiasts of both styles are convinced that their side is better than the other. But the real question here is which strategy you should follow.
Whether you’re recently inducted to the world of SEO or you’re simply looking to cover all the bases of your link building efforts, it’s crucial that you learn what do-follow and no-follow links are. Read on to find more about these two and how they can help you optimize your website.
This is how all links start once they’re born on the Internet—as do-follow links. When a search engines’ spiders crawl your site, they check and index all the links as well as the places these links point to. For instance, if you post an article to a different website and in that article you inserted a link that will direct the reader to your site, the spiders will identify this connection and thus credit its value in the form of link juice. The link juice helps search engines determine your site’s PageRank, which basically indicates how valuable your website is. As far as the do-follow links are concerned, the more juices your links generate, the higher the ranking it can possibly get. This advantage is what makes do-follow links an easy favorite among SEO specialists and link builders.
This is what a specific do-follow link looks like:
The “dofollow” code inserted in the link is the one that tells search engines to go the site it points to. On the other hand, normal links or the links that do not include the “dofollow” code in it still function as do-follow links. Their difference is that the ones that are encrypted with the code have a distinctive HTML Markup which tells the search engines to follow the link to where it is directed.
And then there are the no-follow links. A link becomes a no-follow when its respective code is inserted to a normal or a do-follow link. When spiders detect no-follow links, they simply index it but they don’t go to the site the link is pointed to. Now you might be thinking that without the do-follow code encryption, your links will not be able to generate as much juice as possible, thus limiting the possibilities of your site getting a high PageRank.
No-follow links aficionados beg to differ. There is much to gain from no-follow links the same way do-follow links are beneficial. For instance, those who use no-follow links have the liberty to select the sites that are up for PageRank’s evaluation. No-follow links also help eliminate spam especially on platform types that encourage comments such as blogs.
Other users of no-follow links also believe that PageRank is not the only metrics that a website needs to improve on. While the PR of a website reflects its value, there are also other yardsticks you use such as Alexa Ranking and Domain Authority.
To give you a more accurate visual, it looks like this:
It’s Your Call
As far as the science behind SEO is concerned, there isn’t always a single correct answer. There are questions that are better explained with multiple claims, which at times can contradict each other. But beyond the number of answers available, what’s more important is to determine which strategy best applies to your situation. When it comes to link building tactics, it doesn’t really matter which technique is right or wrong; what matters more is that the solution you went for is effective.
With regards to do-follow and no-follow links, you should look beyond answering which is better for your site. Both methods of linking have their own advantages which now direct you to your next concern: on which pages you will use either? Whether you decide to use both or to stick to just one style, always remember to practice it in moderation.
Vincent Sevilla is a marketing consultant for Affilorama.com, an affiliate marketing portal which offers affiliate marketing tools and free affiliate marketing lessons.