Following the No Follow rule

Following the No Follow rule

Linkbuilding – The rel=“nofollow” tag

So this week we will be examining another key component of the link: the rel=“nofollow” tag. This tag was originally introduced in 2005 by Google by way of helping webmasters combat spammers.

So how does it work? Basically, you add this tag to the end of the link structure as follows {a href=“” rel=“nofollow”}. What this does is it tells Google that the link above shouldn’t be given any credit / linkjuice even though its on your website.

In the past, webmasters would use this tag to do what is called page-rank sculpting, where they will attempt to no-follow links to pages that they do not want to rank in an attempt to improve the linkjuice given to the other pages. However, Google has since confirmed that any link on a page will still be attributed linkjuice but links with nofollow will have theirs dissipate making this practice somewhat obsolete.

So where does this leave us? Firstly, you’d want to make sure as much as possible that links you build to your site don’t have the rel=“nofollow” tag attached to them. Where possible, try to contact the webmaster with the actual code(including anchor text) of the link you are asking for.

Finally, any pages on your website which you do not want to rank for a particular reason should be nofollowed i.e. privacy information, terms and conditions etc. You’d want only the good stuff to be showing up in the search engines. Do take note however, that no-following a link does not guarantee its exclusion from the Google index especially if another website links to it.

This article was first pubished in Startupsmart – Following the No-Follow Rule

Wai Hong Fong
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