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Why Nofollow Links can help your SEO

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Last updated on February 12, 2020

No business wants to be on the second page of search engine results. One reason for rankings not improving is because your links may be set as Nofollow.

Let’s say you are running a strategy to improve your Google search ranking. One of the most effective ways to improve ranking is to build quality backlinks to your site. Backlinks are simply other sites linking to yours.  

However, even if you have built up a lot of backlinks to your website through social platforms for example, your site ranking on Google might not improve that much. 

In this post, I will discuss the difference between Dofollow links and Nofollow links and how Nofollow links can be used to improve your SEO (Search Engine Optimisation).

What is a Dofollow Link?

A Dofollow link is a normal backlink that links from other websites to your site. Those links tell Google which websites to rank and which not to rank. 

Dofollow links help you increase your SERP (Search Engine Results Page) ranking and build up your domain authority.

What is a Nofollow Link?

Nofollow links are links with a special tag in the HTML to tell search engines to ignore it. Those tags include "sponsored", "ugc", and "nofollow" with different meanings.  

  1. rel=“sponsored” tag for paid links, e.g. advertisement, banner ads.
  2. rel=”ugc” tag for user-generated content, e.g. comments, forum posts.
  3. rel=”nofollow” for non-trusted links or values don’t apply.

Nofollow links don’t build domain authority to your website and your page ranking doesn’t benefit from them. However, Nofollow links work like any other hyperlink, when you click on it, it still takes you to a page. 

Why is there a Nofollow link?

The Nofollow link was created by Google’s webspam team to combat spammers using blog comments to insert links known as ‘Spam in Blogs’. 

As the number of blog’s increased the problem led to spammers leaving a link back to their site in the comment. 

For a time it worked incredibly well for spammers’ sites, but visitors didn’t get the quality information from those links which is against the policy of Google as showing relevant information to searchers.

Where do you get Nofollow links?

Inbound links from these sources tend to be Nofollow:

  • Paid links (banner ads, advertisements, sponsored links)
  • Links in forum posts or other forms of user-generated content (Quora, Youtube, Wikipedia, Reddit, Medium)
  • Blog comments
  • Links from social media (e.g. links from Facebook back to your site)
  • Links in press releases, news sites...

Do Nofollow links benefit your business in some way? 

The answer is yes. 

Here’s why:

  1. Nofollow links can bring you TRAFFIC.

You already know how important social media is to your online success, the more you are active on social media the more links you can build back to your website.

Even those links e.g. from Facebook are Nofollow links, your website gets more traffic and possibly gains more conversion opportunities.

  1. Nofollow links can build brand awareness and benefit your SEO.

If you have a backlink from a popular press release, it can bring you a ton of awareness from its audience. 

When your brand is stronger, your website gets more traffic, your blog is seen more by people, your social media has more followers and all these attributes benefit your SEO.

Also, those people who found you by Nofollow links can use you as a resource and possibly link back to you by Dofollow links which help you rank higher in the SERP’s.

In short, while Nofollow links do not directly help your page rank higher in search engine results, they do help spread your brand all over the web. More people will find you and you can generate more backlinks from those Nofollow links.

So my advice is to keep yourself active on social media by giving out more helpful content on social platforms and do not worry too much if the link is Dofollow or Nofollow.

About the Author

Vanessa is a Digital Marketing Enthusiast. She loves all things about Digital and has a passion to help business growth with Digital Marketing. Vanessa is working at Konnector as a Digital Intern and building up her knowledge on SEO, SEM, Social Marketing, Content Marketing, Email Marketing and Automation.

Vanessa Dinh