In the advertising and blogging world, there are a lot of terms that get thrown around. While there are some that are up front and pretty self explanatory, there are others that have caused a great debate each and every time they are brought up. The top phrases that come to mind are no follow links vs. follow links.
What exactly is a no follow link?
A no follow link is defined as “an HTML attribute value used to instruct search engines bots that a hyperlink should not influence the link target’s ranking in the search engine’s index.”
Ok, so you are probably thinking, “What the heck does that mean in layman’s terms?!”
To break down the definition, HTML is fancy language for a piece of code used in your website telling the page do so something. In text, this refers to the fact that the HTML is telling Google’s bots (or Bing’s or Yahoo’s) just to skip over and ignore the link that was placed in the body of the website page.
So a follow link is….
You’ve guessed it. A follow link is exactly the opposite of the previously defined no follow link. The link to the other site that has been placed in the body of a website page is to be acknowledged by the search engine bots.
Why does it matter?!
Here is why it matters:
1. If a company is paying a website to post a link to their site on said website, a no follow link should be used.
2. If you like an article that another website has posted, but as a company you don’t necessarily support everything else that company puts out, a no follow link would be appropriate.
3. Another example would be having to pay a company (one that say uses 3 B’s in it’s abbreviation ) to be registered and used on your site, signaling trust in your company. Due to the fact that YOU had to pay them for the use of the badge, there is no reason to give them more ‘link juice.’
Originally, Google released this no follow attribute to fight comment spam on blogs. It has since expanded since it’s inception to account for paid campaigns.
If you have more questions about follow vs. no follow links, we would love to start that conversation with you. Or maybe you are ready to take your website to the next level, we can help with that too!