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Website Linking Strategies and The No Follow tag

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By: Paul Easton

A website looking to get long term free traffic from the search engines, an understanding of website linking strategies needs to be applied. The strategy needs to fit your business model and must be maintained over time. Traffic from links, it takes time to see results.

At this time, Google is winning the search engine war. The majority of webmasters approach a linking strategy purely for SEM (Search Engine Marketing). More links to a site is a key when looking to get found in Google

The overall goal should be traffic results based, not purely for search engines.


Links can take a long time to show up and help your rankings. A site that would help indirectly with search marketing results would be Wikipedia.

This free online library allows edits to apply external links to the bottom its pages. The site has a many million pages and a vast amount of traffic

Now Wikipedia has applied the ‘no follow' HTML tag on its external page links to stop it being abused by some webmasters. This can be seen on any site using this process, by the following steps:

1. Highlight the link by left mouse and holding 2. Right mouse the link and look at the properties.

The text "Nofollow" can be seen in the properties

The no follow tag means Page Rank (or Reputation - PR) will not be passed on to your site and Google will not count it as a link. To Quote Wikipedia:

"nofollow" actually tells a search engine "Don't score this link" rather than "Don't follow this link."

However many of the Wikipedia pages rank very high on Google, and features as a trusted authority site which has power in all search engines. It is likely to send targeted traffic which is really the end result you are looking for anyway.

At the same time, different engines treat these links differently. In a recent interview with the Yahoo director of search, they have stated that the link will be followed to the site, however the details of the link will not be passed on, simply that your site will be found.

There is an easy way to identify these types of links, if you use the Web Browser, Firefox which I highly recommended. It is a good alternative to Internet Explorer as its very clean and easy to use.

It has an Search Engine Marketing add on which, when installed and turned on, it will show you the no follow links highlighted in red.

Also, while searching in Google, it will show a large amount of information on links to the listings, age of the site, alexa ranking etc.

Download it here:

Another method that has been used to acquire links, is that of posting comments on blogs. This has resulted in a rash of posting comments only for return links. Wordpress, one of the most used blog open source software platforms, has made all the comment links no follow in order to combat this.

In conclusion, there are many effective linking strategies, for marketing online at the same time the development of goals with an overall plan for the development of these goals should be applied.

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