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Introducing heavy internal linking to well ranking site

 7:27 am on Apr 22, 2010 (gmt 0)

Wikipedia is a model site that's been using in-text links for ages to make it easy for users to navigate and for search engines to index.
Recently, I have been seeing sites doing internal in-content linking automatically. It seems they just assigned certain keywords to certain pages and everytime a word shows up in text, they make it a link automatically.

Would you PROs consider such tactic secure and worth giving a shot on a site with a couple thousands articles?
Will this have any visible SEO benefit these days?
Will this be secure to shot all internal links at once?


Robert Charlton

 4:33 am on Oct 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

i am assuming then that you DON'T link FROM the product pages to the article pages then, right?

it is just one way linking from the article pages to the products then, right?

That's the principle, but I wouldn't be absolute about this. My assumption in building articles on a commercial site is that the articles will both help users, and be good enough to attract inbound links, and that you'd naturally link to the product page from the article page for that reason.

Would linking back to to the article page from the product page change that? For that matter, would cross linking the two diminish the linking effect from the article page?

Because of the external inbound links, the article would naturally have more authority anyway, but not necessarily more relevance to a commercial query. So targeting and likely searches enter into it when you've got an article page and a product page, and you want to cross-link them.

I'm leaving a lot of open questions, in part because I don't have easy answers. Thoughts?


 5:04 am on Oct 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

I did some looking into Wikipedia - according to one research paper the average Wikipedia article has 26 links to other Wikipedia pages.

I don't know about "26" links but I do know that Wikipedia is not an ecommerce site AND that those various links are to explanation pages, not "more of the same". Look up "aircraft carriers" for an example of how diverse those links are AND how few (each article) links there really are.

I wouldn't do it. Hypertext links should be to something IMPORTANT for the original document. But then again, I'm old school. And I wouldn't automate links. That removes editorial control over the website.


 7:40 am on Oct 13, 2010 (gmt 0)


i am assuming then that you DON'T link FROM the product pages to the article pages then, right?

At the moment I am only linking to category, sub cat and product pages from the info pages. All the links are strictly contextual - meaning if a certain manufacturers widget occurs in the text, I link only to that manufacturers widget page. Even though I would prefer to rank for generic widget terms.

I am not allowed to link from product pages at the moment but our programmer is adding a field in the cms to allow this. I want to link to informational pages on our site and external sites. After all, people are more likely to buy a widget if they know how to use it:)


 7:42 am on Oct 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

The problem I have seen on sites with automated linking is that many words have multiple meanings. The automated links do not understand the context, so they put the wrong link in, or link when it would be better to leave alone.


 7:46 am on Oct 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

@ graeme_p

I totally agree. I tried a Wordpress plugin for that purpose and it made a terrible mess.

It is impossible to guess the context of words that haven't even been written yet


 7:53 am on Oct 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

automated internal linking will never help.Do it manually and to the most relevant pages.

If you are on wordpress, a related post plugin is good enough.


 12:48 pm on Oct 13, 2010 (gmt 0)

When I have made sites from scratch I have always included breadcrumbs and anchortext links from each page to other relevant pages. It was just part of the basic in site navigation.

Sites that I built from scratch like that usually did well in G from the get go, often with much lower PR than their enemies.

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