Every small business owner wants to get more traffic to their website. Organic traffic, in particular, is the most coveted form of traffic and refers to free traffic coming in on relevant search terms. Internal link building is one of the many SEO tactics that you can employ to improve your ranking and traffic. Read on to learn how to do a simple, but often-overlooked internal link building project that you can tackle in just an hour (if you have a large website it could take longer, but you can always break it up into pieces).
Related: SEO Pocket Guide for Business Owners
Search engines’ ranking algorithm has gotten extremely sophisticated and now ranks your business’s website on a number factors. Some page rank factors include:
• Content: Quality of content, relevance to a user’s search, and accuracy
• Social Shares: How many visitors share your content on social media and how influential your visitors are
• Links: Both inbound and outbound links and the quality of those links
There are numerous other ways to improve your business’s search engine rankings, but internal link building is one of the easiest to implement. Internal link building is on on-page SEO tactic, meaning it entails direct manipulations to pages on your website.
Links to pages on your website, as well as their anchor text (the words that you click on), have a significant impact on how well your website will rank in search engines. They serve as endorsements to your site. What many small business owners don’t realize is that links from one page on a company website to another page on the same website also count. In fact, Google’s original innovation was figuring out that how web pages link to each other was a better way to rank them rather relying only on how many times they showed a phrase (keyword).
These are internal links. Internal links on pages of your website direct you to other pages on your website. They help to make your website a more cohesive entity, which makes for better navigation for visitors as well as easier crawling for search engines. If you’ve been publishing blog posts and other website pages without including links within the text, this is the one-hour project that can significantly boost your traffic.
For this one-hour project, you will simply want to go through pages that already exist on your website and to try to find places where you can link to other pages on your site.For most platforms, you can easily add internal links by highlighting the text and then clicking on the link icon. Here’s how it looks in WordPress:
Make sure the anchor text that users click on is relevant to the page it points to. This will help that page’s SEO as well. For example, if I wanted to link to a post about going green for small business, I might have a sentence like this:
“Another goal you might strive for in the new year is to make your business more eco-friendly.“
• I hyperlinked the text that directly describes the post it points to.
• Hyperlinking “eco-friendly” only makes it unclear to the reader where that link will lead them. A page about what eco-friendly means? A personal piece on saving the environment?
• Hyperlinking “Another goal you might strive for in the new year” is also not ideal, as readers are likely to click on it expecting to read about more goals you can set for the year.
Your website’s home page is almost always the page with the greatest “authority” as far as Google is concerned. A link from the content on the homepage will have the most impact. The pages from your main navigation, such as your products and services page, are usually the next stop on the authority list. From there, you just want to be sure that no page goes underutilized —every blog post and subpage on your website is a potential opportunity to do some internal linking.
There is no hard and fast rule for the number of internal links that should be on a page, but there are guidelines that will help you determine how much linking is appropriate. For example:
So, there you have it. A simple, yet underutilized way to improve your website ranking and organic traffic on Google and other search engines. You’ve now spent 5 minutes reading this article, which still leaves you the next 55 minutes to improve your SEO – get after it! After you get some more traffic coming to your site, the next area of focus will be on getting them to stay there.