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Best practices for internal links... PageRank and anchor text?



6:22 pm on Jun 12, 2014 (gmt 0)

I have a question regarding PageRank and internal links. Let's assume there is a homepage (like a forum) that has 100 links to 100 different topics. In addition to the 100 links to each topic, there is an extra link to the last post in each topic. So in total there are 100+100=200 links on the page. The structure is like below.

My question is - what is the best practice to make sure the PageRank is optimized on the page and is not 'lost' by too many links. Does Google count the main link to the topic and link to an anchor within this topic as two separate links? So the ultimate question is - from ranking/PageRank point of view, would it be best to just remove the links to the last post or they can be kept as they are? Thank you.

<div id="discussions">

<a href="example.com/topic-1.html">Topic 1</a>
<a href="example.com/topic-1.html#lastpost">Last Post in Topic 1</a>

<a href="example.com/topic-2.html">Topic 2</a>
<a href="example.com/topic-2.html#lastpost">Last Post in Topic 2</a>


<a href="example.com/topic-100.html">Topic 1</a>
<a href="example.com/topic-100.html#lastpost">Last Post in Topic 100</a>



6:54 pm on Jun 12, 2014 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

If you click the first link in your example is the target of the second link the first thing you would see? If the second link doesn't add additional utility it might be unneeded. It sort of depends on which link is most useful.

Do you have information to show you which form of the similar links is more popular with visitors/users of the links? Seeing how people use the links might show you a clear difference.


7:06 pm on Jun 12, 2014 (gmt 0)

When user clicks on the first link (Topic 1), he is always taken to top of the page. If he clicks on 'Last Post in Topic 1' then he is taken to the last post in this topic (it could be located either on top/middle/bottom of the page - it depends how how many posts there are in the topic).

So from usability point of view some users who watch the topic click on the 'Last Post in Topic 1' to watch the latest reply in this topic. But most probably click on the main link (ie. Topic 1).

I wonder if by having links to the same page a PageRank is somehow 'diluted / wasted.''

Robert Charlton

7:12 am on Jun 13, 2014 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator robert_charlton is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

I wonder if by having links to the same page a PageRank is somehow 'diluted / wasted.''

I think most SEOs who have been around for a while would say that only the first link counts as far as anchor text is concerned... but there's probably less consensus about how multiple links to a single page might affect the numerator and denominator in calculating PageRank distribution. My guess is that there's some kind of proportionality maintained.

Regarding your forum setup... my preference in building a site is not to have too many deep links from home, but rather to try to maintain some sort of hierarchical structure in a site's nav structure.

IMO, a hundred links from home to individual topics is too many. It's too many choices, and not really user-friendly.

Depending on your other internal navigation, I doubt that adding a second link to each of these to the last post in a topic would be throwing the link juice away... but that is a guess.

See this discussion (from 2011, which is a while back), which might have some helpful thoughts. It mentions the only test I've seen regarding PageRank distribution with multiple links...

How Is Page Rank Affected By Multiple Links To The Same Page?
http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4305209.htm [webmasterworld.com]


4:47 pm on Jun 13, 2014 (gmt 0)

Thank you, this answer almost completely answers my questions ;).

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