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Can internal links improve SEO (search engine optimization) and the UX (user experience) on a website?..The answer is yes and is a pretty simple process.You just have to make it a habit every time you write a new post or publish a new page.

Internal links are those who point to your website , on other posts and pages , on the same domain , the links that stay inside your web property.

 

The Importance of Using Internal Links both for SEO and UX

 

Without internal linking your website is like a road without signs.Where should your visitors go next after reading a post?..Which post on your website offers additional information for the subject you are expanding on?…What is the overall content marketing strategy you use and what are your goals as an affiliate and website owner?

 

Builds trust with your visitors

 

Your website is your business foundation and the content inside is your weaponry.As an affiliate you have some promotional posts with affiliate links to earn commissions for your work.You have informational posts , like tutorials , guides , tools , resources , reviews that add trust to your brand and bring you traffic.The more content  , the more weapons to use  , more chances to succeed at your goals.

By dividing the content in categories and by inter connecting the posts and pages , you present a well organised website that helps visitors understand your overall content and directions.You are the driver , you set the rules according to your strategy.

 

At the end of every post usually we display a CTA button (Call to Action).You can point anywhere on your website , offering a solution , an alternative recommendation or additional information.Beware though not to inter link always to your affiliated promotions , as that action is not equal with a Good User Experience.

For example , I am directing my visitors to read about the basics of Affiliate Marketing or to other articles with relevant information without pointing always to my affiliated posts.If a visitor is interested he can be directed through the second interlinked article to your sales pages.

 

Just because someone read an article on your site does not mean is ready to buy from you.In fact , statistics show that a visitor trusts a website by repeated visits and we want to build trust following this guideline.That is why I recommend to drive visitors to your body content and start gaining their respect.Moreover they will trust you and eventually they might buy.

The users now are not left in the dark.You guide them to other posts , they have options to choose.

 

Helping Search Engines Bots

 

The engines can crawl faster your website and understand your content.Search engines love websites that use internal linking and that is your top priority.You can use external links as well to offer alternative sources and cite important aspects but you do not want to point out to different domains on every new post.Instead you need to use internal links on all of your posts.

 

The search engines do not admire websites that point out to external sources very often.If you do that the engines won’t take you seriously because in that cases it seems you do not to trust your own content.Your website is where your visitors should stay and find answer to their questions or problems.That can be achieved by publishing new material frequently and by inter linking all the relevant posts.

 

Additionally … internal linking can result to better rankings for one particular post or a mini group of posts.

 

Let’s say you are you are reviewing a specific product that is very similar to another one you reviewed in the past.Or the owner of that new product is the same with the previous one.You have to connect these posts and you can add more relevant posts into this group.Then the rankings for the old post primarily but for the new ones as well are getting an uplift.

With this process you increase your authority.Now you have an additional post to enhance the old content.The old post now is a part of a wider group and both posts help one another.

 

Reducing Bounce Rate

 

The bounce rate counts users that visited a page or post on your website and then directed to an external source of left the website without visiting a second page or post.By inter connecting relevant articles you increase the ratio of additional visits and decrease the bounce rate , which can help you get better rankings.

Search engines consider bounce rate as an important factor as it shows that your content is interesting and engaging.

 

Continuous Updates

 

By interlinking new pages to old ones is a sign that you care for the visitors , for their overall experience and that you update your site consistently.The engines admire websites that are updating frequently.

 

What to Avoid When Interlinking

 

Do not point to your homepage , as that page is always accessible with a simple click.If you set your homepage to display the latest blog posts is a good example of multiple internal links and that is enough.Through your call to action buttons you want to direct visitors deep into your content.

 

Do not point to the contact form page from posts.Instead you can point to that specific page from other pages that are necessary but created for operational purposes , such as the privacy policy , disclaimers and other strictly informational pages.

Instead inside your posts you can guide visitors to take action and reach you through the comment section.Comments will build trust and is the sign that a website is alive , like a mini community,I will expand on this subject in the near future as comments are the most important factor when it comes to authority.

 

Do not overuse internal links.That depends on your site , your niche and the overall size of your website.I never exceed the 5 internal links inside my posts and if we count the related posts plugin that is displayed at the bottom of every post we reach the 11 internal links.For my website I think is enough.

Matt Cutts , ex Googler suggests not to use over 100 internal links inside a post.If you do the bots will have a hard time in crawling your website and might leave before they crawl all these internal links.

 

 

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Conclusion

 

Internal links are more important than you may think , especially if you are a new website owner.Is the core to build trust and authority , helps the engines , reduces the bounce rate , increases the average time of visitors that stay inside your website.All these factors can get you better rankings , meaning more traffic and more conversions.

 

I hope you enjoy reading this article.I am welcoming your comments as always.Are you using internal links as part of your marketing campaigns?..Till next time , your online partner.

 

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Black Hat SEO – What To Avoid if You Want a Healthy Website

 

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