Link Building 101: Google’s Latest Recommendations

05 May, 2023 Google Features

Google recently released a new set of best practices for links in their SEO and search developer documentation. The new document was updated from its original version, which focused on creating crawlable links. Now, it includes a range of other topics explaining how to optimize your website’s links for better rankings and user experience.

Crawlable Links

A crawlable link is a hyperlink that search engine bots can follow to crawl and index the linked web page. For a link to be considered crawlable, it must be in the correct format for search engine crawlers to interpret. This helps search engine bots understand the structure and content of a website, which is an essential part of the search engine optimization process. Without crawlable links, search engines may have difficulty finding and indexing a website’s content, leading to lower visibility and traffic.

According to Google’s updated guidelines, links must be formatted using an <a> HTML element and include an href attribute to be crawlable. Non-standard link formats may not be parsed and extracted by Google’s crawlers, meaning that they will not be considered when determining the relevance and authority of your website.

Anchor Text and Anchor Text Placement

According to Google, effective anchor text should be reasonably concise, provide context for the link, and set clear expectations for the reader. Reviewing the examples of good and bad anchor text provided by Google can help you craft better anchor text to help your pages rank. By writing good anchor text, you can help users and search engines better navigate your site.

Anchor text provides critical context to users and search engines about the content of the linked page. To ensure that Google can properly crawl and interpret your anchor text, it must be placed between <a> HTML elements.

Internal and External Links

An internal link is a hyperlink on a webpage that directs the user to another page on the same website or domain. In other words, it’s a link that connects different pages within the same website.

On the other hand, an external link is a hyperlink on a webpage that directs the user to another website or domain. These links are also known as outbound links since they lead the user away from the current website to another website.

In the new link best practices, Google highlights the importance of internal linking for helping users and search engines understand the context of a site. You should link to other relevant pages on your site that will be helpful to your users. Additionally, every important page on your site should have a link from at least one other page on your site. Consider what other resources on your site could help your readers understand a given page and link to those pages in context.

For external links, Google emphasizes that linking to other websites can establish trustworthiness, especially if you are citing your sources. Linking to other sites is not bad, but be cautious about linking to spammy or low-quality sites. Linking to other trustworthy sites can signal that your site is a reputable source and provides valuable information to your users.

Let Our Team Help With Your Link Building Strategy

Links are an essential ranking factor for most search engines, so it is crucial to follow Google’s best practices to ensure your website’s links are optimized for search. You should pay attention to the new set of link best practices and update your link-building and management practices accordingly.

Google’s new link best practices cover various topics, from anchor text placement to internal and external links. At BluShark Digital, we stay up to date on these best practices to optimize site links for better rankings and user experience. Contact us to learn more about Google’s recommendations and stay ahead of the game.