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Linking out to good sites with KW-anchor and dofollow?

 1:59 pm on Aug 13, 2013 (gmt 0)

recently I have read about the pros and cons of linking out to good sites, for example authorities or hm... at least relevant and successful ranking sites.

I'd like to implement more of them. It's natural, good for the user and connects you with good sites, even if you are the generously giving part.

My question is not if, it's how doing it:
a) follow/nofollow
b) the main keyword of the page as anchor? Is such a KW-anchor a bit "too much love" or in the same degree helpful for me as the active linking part?



 2:34 pm on Aug 16, 2013 (gmt 0)

Of course I care about my traffic, but my choice of where or when to link has nothing to do with that (and it didn't even before all this FUD about links started taking over) My goal is for all my important sites to be balls out useful to my users, and that is the only criteria I use (or have ever used) when placing a link.


 3:51 pm on Aug 16, 2013 (gmt 0)

jimbeetle: Are YOU implying that you can create a website which does EVERYTHING opposite of what G recommends and get anywhere on their search results? Try leaving out an H1, a title, a meta description and direct link to 100 unrelated s-x sites from a single page about baking cookies while advertising to add anyone who pays monthly, and see if you show up anywhere on G.

Doing everything the exact opposite? Not at all. And taking this from a question about links to H1s and descriptions just muddles everything and is not at all productive.

What is your point?

My point is that you made it sound like Google has specific guidelines concerning external link text that must be followed otherwise a site might be penalized. I've never seen any.

Of course, there are algorithmic reasons for choosing certain types of link text over others, depending on the circumstances. But not hitting the algo's sweet spot and being penalized are very different things.


 9:00 pm on Aug 16, 2013 (gmt 0)

With the top half of the page being paid ads for many search terms, the only way to beat the competition is to bid high in Adwords.

I link the way I link without concern for Google. It's quite obvious that the way Google ranks websites is not based on quality or how we link to others, but instead on how much money they can make directly or indirectly by feeding traffic to partners. It's a stacked deck and the more that people obsess over how they link to others the more likely they are to stress over ranking above Google's favorites.

When Google tells everyone that widgets and CMS links need to be NoFollow, yet they aren't doing the same thing for Google Maps, YouTube and other Google widgets, it really is striking how ludicrous and self serving Google has become.

I used to love to watch videos by Matt Cutts. He is nice guy, and I know he tries to be helpful. But now I am embarrassed for him when he says one thing for everyone else, and Google doesn't even follow their own rules.

Case in point: Matt Cutts said in a 2012 video
"Whenever you get a link from just a word press footer or just a random footer or, you know, when someone installs a widget or they install
some theme on their content management system, it’s often the case that they’re not editorially choosing to link with that anchor text."

What is someone "editorially" doing when they embed a Google Map or YouTube video?
(these widgets have DoFollow links)

My personal policy is to support other apps because I don't have much trust in Google's own policies.


 8:37 am on Aug 17, 2013 (gmt 0)

Dofollow links in widgets could also mean that Google's left hand does not follow the advice of the right, or simply that they do not care about ranking factors because they do not rely on the organic SERPS (they are embedded in Google search).


 10:00 am on Aug 18, 2013 (gmt 0)

Thanks to all, really helpful.


 2:48 pm on Aug 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

Simple answer here:
If the link is given based on the other site being awesome or trusted by you = dofollow

If the link is placed based on payment or reciprocity = nofollow

It's good and natural to link to authoritative sites. It may or may not improve your own trust and authority. Read between the lines.


 1:45 pm on Aug 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

quick question:

Are src links in javascript seen as an external link? For instance, image and src links that are used for social sharing scripts. When I inspect the elements of my sharing scripts, I see src="http:" Surely, Google is disregarding those?


 4:07 pm on Aug 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

In terms of page rank etc, no, those are not links.

It doesn't mean they don't get followed by all manner of bots and your question makes me wonder if Google is smart enough to know that an image page with 100 src attributes that point to another domain is likely a low-quality page. My subjective impression from Google image search is that no, they aren't that smart (seems crazy, but I'm always landing on "image aggregator" pages that outrank the original).


 4:21 pm on Aug 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

your question makes me wonder if Google is smart enough to know that an image page with 100 src attributes that point to another domain is likely a low-quality page


Thank you for the reply. Yeah, I also wonder whether Google associates some of the src links (and tracking pixels) with low quality. My 3rd party analytics service gives me tracking code, with a tracking pixel. Coincidentally, that analytics provider ranks very poorly, so I worry that my tracking code, and associated pixel/cookie, are seen as spammy. I also see src links in my social sharing code. I just wonder what the impact of all this might be, given that Google has suggested that embed links be nofollowed. I realize that embed links aren't the same, but I certainly hope they are not following src links or lowering the trust of my website because of where the source originates.

I hope this all makes sense. It might seem like a very amateur concern, but with the way links are being perceived by Google (and Google's ability to execute and follow javascript), I am worried about guilt by association and my uncertainty regarding what constitutes a "link" (in this case, source links and cookies).


 3:26 pm on Aug 22, 2013 (gmt 0)

I wouldn't worry about tracking codes. Google knows which codes are pointing where and why since they now have a large enough user base for their tag manager to have as much data as they would need for this.

I'm thinking of the case where the featured content is hotlinked.

kshitija chavan

 5:11 am on Sep 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

I think we should take a hint from Google's posts on how to choose anchor texts for linking (both on site and with external sites). Read the last line on https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/66356?hl=en.

They have linked 'let us know' to another page. This means the links should be subtly placed and should not be 'in your face' for ranking purposes. Yes, the ultimate aim is to achieve rankings for your site but we should be so obvious about it.

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