Your link building strategy goes a long way in ensuring that your website stays visible on search engine results. When it comes to adding links to your site, it is not only so much about the links you solicit from other websites. Part of your link building strategy should involve internal linking.
The benefits of internal linking are very evident, mainly when it helps you reach out to your target audience, and search engines find more material from your site. It is a fact that the internal links are necessary for driving referrals and portraying model and area authority to search engine results. That said, you should create a culture of frequently auditing your internal links. While you may not find any value in it, here are five reasons auditing your internal links can benefit you:
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They Portray Page Importance to Search Engines
Regardless of how much content you generate on your site, the value of your content comes in when search engines can crawl your site accordingly and index you for the position you merit on SERP. Even though the crawl bots eventually get to every website online, the process might be much easier if you checked on your internal linking technique.
Ideally, you should ask yourself,
- What do you want your visitors to consume from your site?
- What rank position do you desire on SERP?
- What is the most important content on your website?
Once you have resolved those answers, you will see a need to provide Google and other search engines with the information you would want it to rank. It may also be true that the orthodox HTML sitemaps and XML sitemaps are also effective ways to help SERP navigate throughout your website, but if you can use internal linking to your rescue, then the performance of your site on Google is unstoppable.
It also means that with the internal hyperlinks, your ranking will be for the material that you require people to consume more than others. It is a way to prioritize for Google bots which information merits the first place and which does not have much of an impact.
To Help Fix Broken or Bad Links
You may be a pro in SEO, but your site is still prone to broken links. Over time, as you generate more content, edit and update it, you are creating a suitable room for broken links. The more content you have, the more links you also are likely to have. Any changes on your website can quickly turn into a bad link unless you check on it. In the end, the process of auditing your website should involve identifying the parent pages, then updating the links thereof.
While at it, it is the best opportunity to ensure that all internal links resolve correctly – at least 8 out of 10 times. Other than that, check that your website does not bear any misspelled URLs because they will also cause page errors, lower your user experience, and increase bounce rates.
To Check for Pages with more than 100 Links
Even though it is not official from Google what number of links are suitable on one page, there is such a thing as too many links. The links in a page can swiftly become too overwhelming for the reader, leading to increased bounce rates and fewer conversions on leads. Once you consider that links are a sum up of any external and internal links, along with the headers and footers, then you can see how it is easy to get to 100 links or more.
By auditing your website for internal links, you can downsize the number to a more reasonable one. Even without a number in mind, the links on your site should not be too distracting or too obvious for the reader. Over and above, less is more.
To Identify Pages for Better Internal Linking
After a long while of generating content, you may lose count of the number of articles you have published on your site. That said, you will find yourself linking up to the very same material over and over again, completely overlooking some of your great content from previous years. It may be that some of the articles you may overlook as necessary to link to, can be the perfect ones to bring about massive traffic flow on your website.
By auditing your internal links, you have the perfect opportunity to identify pages that are better for internal linking. This will ensure that some pages do not have an overabundance of links so that the pages of little importance do not get all the attention of your target audience.
Focus on those pages that have zero or very few links pointing to them. If you are keen to analyze the content that goes with the URLs, you will quickly notice that there are weak pages that do not have any value that can be passed from one page to another.
For such pages, you can choose to update them and have them merit the attention of your audience, or simply do away with them. However, it is best that you keep up with the weak pages as much as you do with the strong ones. The weak ones can point out some of the mistakes you have been making that you should not repeat, and how best to capitalize on them for the overall achievement of your goals.
To Improve the Quality of Your Existing Links
Like you would take time to improve the quality of your content, take time to improve the quality of your existing links. Remember, it is never about the quantity of inside linking, but more about the profitability of the inside hyperlinks to your site’s goal. Auditing your internal links allows you to match the right content with each other while projecting your best material to your visitors. Find the most visited and the least visited pages, and use internal linking to leverage properly.
Since internal links should be responsible for some of the visits to some pages on your website, ensure that people are focusing on the material that matters most to your brand. It is one of the reasons why you need landing pages for your marketing campaigns. Without auditing the links, it is difficult to spit the pages that are performing well after optimization and those that are not. When looking to improve the quality of your existing internal hyperlinks, be sure that you follow the following few tips:
- Check that the links point to an absolute URL and not a relative hyperlink.
- Check that your links do not point to redirecting pages. This is very common when site owners transition from HTTP to HTTPS.
- Clear up your damaged internal hyperlinks
- Check that your hyperlinks are not to a duplicated web page and be intentional with linking to canonical web page variations
To Countercheck the URL Structure
Did you know that in just one mistake in the structure of your URL, you can bring in a huge difference? Every element in a URL works together to refer to a particular page. Changing even a comma, a letter or a number can have a tremendous effect. It is how your site will end up having lots of page errors. The structure of the URLs you use for your internal links should, therefore, be well spelled and identical to the original URL.
Other than that, the structure of your URLs also has a lot to do with the content thereof. Technically, a healthy URL should point to the topic issue you cover in your post. This means that even your primary keywords should make it to your URLs. More to it, there are some basic rules you should adhere to with your URLs, including:
- Should not be too long – be as brief, clear, and straight to the point as possible
- Should not contain irrelevant symbols, numbers, and characters. For example www.example.com/4b0-#dfd-$#35g/
- Should not be written in uppercase, for example, www.example.com/GDTY-BAND-TYPE/
- Should capture the topic of discussion, for example in this post, www.example.com/auditing-internal-links/
If your URLs are not at per with the above pointers, then it is a good thing you considered auditing your internal links. If you still struggle with coming up with the perfect URLs, then just copy your headings into the structure of your links and make them your URLs.
It is a Key Metric in KPI Analysis
You cannot talk of measuring your optimization performance without including the role of internal linking. By far and wide, internal links connect your brand, your site, your content, and the target audience. If you measure how effective your optimization efforts have been, then internal linking should be a factor.
For one, when you use an analytical tool like Google Analytics, you can identify the areas of your site that are lagging, and those that are doing very well. If so many people are visiting a lot of your web pages instead of exiting, it can be because of your internal lining technique. Since the vice versa is also a tool, there is clearly a need to audit your internal links. It is the only way you can be sure you do not repeat past mistakes, which makes more sense that you document all changes.
To Update any Changes
You must realize that SEO is a necessary ongoing process that is more or less endless. All the efforts you put forth to make your website a better place works to elevate your position on Google’s search results. As this is the case, any changes that you determine on your site can in one way or another affect your internal links. Given that any minor tweak in an internal link can result in broken links and page errors, the last thing you want is to leave them outdated.
Technically, when you change up any information on a web page, say you bring down the entire article or change the angle and perspective of the topic, the internal links need an update.
Internal Links Usher Customers to Conversions
You know how converting lead to sales means a lot for your eCommerce store? Well, with internal linking, you can convert your customers to conversions. By linking material that is most important to you, you are creating a supposed pathway to your goal. Ideally, if you are very strategic with your internal linking, you will create a network of some of the top pieces of material on your site, usually those that depict what your brand is about. Internal linking can, in a way, act as a call-to-action, channeling your audience to areas you want them to visit so you can achieve your goal.
For example, in any content you share, your goal could be to get people to buy a product form your online store. With internal links, you can direct the traffic on all your content toward a web page that has more information about which products are on sale, and how they can make an order or shop from your store. It is particularly helpful when you want to concentrate on lead product or service, either a newly launched merchandise, or one that has not been performing very well in the market. This is where you can manipulate the unsuccessful pages on your platform to mimic inside linking, which will turn out to be profitable pages in light of your core marketing goal.
To Strengthen your Keyword Strategy
Using up your target keywords in copy can be challenging, especially if your material lies in the ‘less than 1000’ word count category. Ideally, the best strategy in keyword research has it that you select a bunch of related key terms that can help you articulate your primary keywords to reach to the right target audience.
With this being the case, then you need to be creative about the ways you use your keywords on your site. For one, you want your keywords to be very strategic as to merit you a position in the top of Google’s search results. Therefore, you will soon find URLs to be the most strategic areas to use your primary keywords. If then you adapt this technique, it means you have to audit your internal links as you do your URLs, to ensure they capture the keywords, but that they are also in sync.
Given that Google launches algorithmic updates regularly, if you do not keep your intern links in check, your past will quickly catch up with you and be the reason for your downfall. Check out https://keyword.com/ to learn more on matters of SEO and keyword performance issues.