I’ve recently been using a new WordPress plugin called Link Whisper to help with my internal linking. Before that, I want to talk a bit about the benefits of Internal linking. Internal linking is a key technique for SEO that you shouldn’t neglect.
- What is Internal Linking?
- Benefits of internal linking
- What is a Good Internal Linking Strategy?
- How to Plan Your Internal Link Structure in WordPress
- 1. Planning Your Content Strategy
- 2. Planning Your Internal Link Structure
- 3. Keywords
- 4. Link deep
- 5. Be relevant
- 6. Natural links
- 7. Do follow links
- 8. How many links should I use?
- 9. Go back and audit your old content
- 10. Make sure there’s no orphaned pages
- Link Whisper for Internal Linking
What is Internal Linking?
Internal links are the links that point to other pages on the same website. Internal linking is a way of improving the flow of your website by making sure that all pages are connected to each other.
They help visitors explore your site more easily. It also is a strategy that can be used to create and maintain a strong search engine optimization (SEO) ranking. It is one of the most powerful link building strategies – I’ll tell you the benefits of internal linking a bit further down in the post.
Internal linking is an important part of content marketing and SEO strategy. This strategy helps marketers (and bloggers!) to provide higher visibility for their content and improve the quality of their site’s user experience.
Internal links vs external links
Internal links are links that point from one page of a website to another page on the same website.
External links are links that point from one website to another website. An inbound link is a link that links to your website from another and an outbound link is a link from your website to another.
Why Internal Linking Matters For SEO?
Internal linking has three main purposes:
- Helps in website navigation
- Defines the architecture and hierarchy of a website
- Passes page authority and ranking power throughout the site
Internal linking is important for SEO because it helps search engines understand the structure of your site and can improve its ranking in search engine results. It helps search engines crawl and index your content more effectively.
It’s not just about SEO, though. The purpose of internal linking is to make sure that all pages on a website are accessible from each other. It also helps users find what they’re looking for more easily.
Benefits of internal linking
It’s within your control
When you like internally, it’s totally within your control. You can decide which posts to link to, which anchor text to use and how many links to place. Whereas trying to get links on other sites is not within your control and up to the webmaster of that site to decide (or agree with you) what link to place where.
Quicker than building external links
Building external links can be time-consuming. It requires research of relevant articles then finding contact details, then you need to send a pitch. If you get a reply (I get loads of these pitches and tend to just ignore them!), then there’s back and forth emails to agree if it will go ahead. But you can place an internal link in a matter of minutes.
Helps your site rank
Internal links count! Spreading your link authority around will help your website rank in Google, especially as you can choose the specific keywords and target pages to link to.
Internal links will improve indexing as search crawlers follow the links within your articles.
Better user experience and navigation
Placing relevant links can improve the user experience of your site as it allows readers to find further information on topics that interest them.
It will also improve your organic traffic and organic click-through rate (CTR) if the user came to your page from Google.
Improves pages per session
When readers click on internal links, it instantly boosts your page per session – this is an indication to Google that your site is engaging and informative which is one of the signals they use to rank pages. The higher the pages per session, the higher you will rank.
As above, internal linking will lower your bounce rate to improve your overall rank as it encourages users to stay longer on your site.
Improves long-tail keyword strategy
Long-tail keywords are a must. With so much competition for those high searched terms, the average website will struggle to get on the first page of Google, never mind the top three results! So long-tail keywords allow you to target more specific terms that get less traffic but maybe much more relevant and likely to get conversions.
What is a Good Internal Linking Strategy?
How to Plan Your Internal Link Structure in WordPress
As a blogger, we want to create and distribute valuable content that drives traffic to our website and converts, whether that be by getting something buy through an affiliate link, signing up to your mailing list or sharing your content on social media. The key to doing this successfully is by understanding the importance of internal linking.
Here I will show you how to plan an effective blog content strategy for SEO by creating an internal link structure in WordPress in 10 easy steps:
1. Planning Your Content Strategy
Strong, linkable content that adds value is what you want to go for here.
Every blog post you write should have a purpose. I used to blog daily and would pop out all these short blog posts for the sake of it. It didn’t do anything for me or my blog. Now, I plan my content – I spend more time on each piece of content, but post less blog articles.
I do keyword research and try to put as much information into my articles so they are helpful and informative (with exception of a few!)
2. Planning Your Internal Link Structure
In a good internal link strategy, you want to have the most links to your most powerful pages (or the ones you want to boost) with relevant anchor texts that tell Google what this page is about. You can empower any page by adding more deep links to it.
Use a keyword research tool such as Keysearch to research different long-tail keywords. You should avoid using the same keywords to rank to the same page so you can tell Google more about the page
You can sign up to Keysearch here and use the discount code KSDISC to get a 20% discount.
4. Link deep
Keep your internal links pointing to other articles, avoid linking to main home pages or your ‘contact me’ page over and over again.
5. Be relevant
Remember that your goal for internal linking isn’t only to improve your search rankings, but also to improve user experience and engagement. If you are linking things that aren’t actually relevant or just for the sake of it, then it will be obvious and could damage your rankings.
If you are struggling to find relevant pages to link to and from, then update old content or create new, useful content.
6. Natural links
As above, the link has to look natural. Just as if you are writing a brand new blog post aimed at a specific keyword, you would only use that keyword when it made sense and not to keyword stuff.
7. Do follow links
Don’t forget to use do-follow links. Using no-follow won’t have any link value and will not share any precious link juice!
8. How many links should I use?
There’s no correct answer for this. I’ve read that about 4 internal links for each piece of content is a good benchmark, but personally, I link what is relevant and natural. It would be smart to use more links for longer content.
9. Go back and audit your old content
Go back through your old content and add links to your newer content. Chances are, you’ve never done this before and there are hundreds of opportunities for you t upgrade old content with links to your new and relevant content!
10. Make sure there’s no orphaned pages
What are orphaned pages?
Well, orphaned pages are pages that are not linked from any other pages. This means you can only get there with the direct link. It also means that search engine crawls can’t crawl them so they are likely not to be indexed.
Now, I have almost 3000 blog posts on this blog. The process of going through them and checking if they had been linked to was a terrifying concept for me. But Link Whisper really helped me out here.
Link Whisper for Internal Linking
Link Whisper runs a link scan on your website and makes internal linking easy.
When I first started using Link Whisper, I had almost 2000 orphaned posts! I’ve gone through my most recent blog post and now I’m slowly going through a few each day.
When you open a post, it suggests your phrases based on possible keywords. These are guesses, you can edit the sentence or search for different keywords if nothing suitable comes up.
When you add the links, it’s all done within the Link Whisper plugin, there’s no need to open the WordPress editor at all.
It’s such a simple way to keep on top of your internal links.
You can also do various other tasks, such as looking at your other internal links, seeing which ones get the most clicks, checking which domains you link to and looking at the error report. But that will be for a different post, where I’ll discuss the Link Whisper price and how to use Link Whisper.
So, no we’ve got that covered, I’d love to know if you have an internal linking strategy?