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The Difference Between Nofollow and Dofollow Links Explained

difference between follow nofollow links
The difference between Nofollow and dofollow links. Which one to use & when. Understand their SEO impact to optimise your website's search engine ranking.

If you’re building a website or working on its search engine optimisation, you will be wondering what the difference between nofollow and dofollow links are. Both of these types of links are crucial when it comes to building a solid backlink profile and website traffic.

What is Link Building for SEO?

Link building for SEO is the process of getting other websites to link to your website. It is a key part of search engine optimisation because search engines like Google use links to determine the authority, trust, relevance, and popularity of a website or web page.

The more high-quality and relevant links a website has pointing to it, the higher it will rank in search results. Link building can be done through outreach, content creation, social media, and other tactics. However, it is important that link-building be done ethically and naturally to avoid penalties and maintain a good online reputation.

When inserting a link into content written on a website, podcast, or blog, there is an option to mark it with a dofollow or nofollow attribute.

The Main Difference Between Nofollow and Dofollow Links…

Aspect DoFollow Links NoFollow Links
Link Attribute DoFollow links allow search engines to follow and index the link NoFollow links instruct search engines not to follow the link
Search Engine Impact DoFollow links contribute to a website’s search engine rankings NoFollow links do not directly impact search engine rankings
Link Juice Flow DoFollow links pass on link juice to the linked page NoFollow links do not pass on link juice
Crawl Frequency DoFollow links are crawled more frequently by search engines NoFollow links may be crawled less frequently by search engines
Spam Protection DoFollow links are more susceptible to spam and link manipulation NoFollow links help prevent spam and discourage link manipulation
Anchor Text Optimization DoFollow links allow for anchor text optimization NoFollow links do not offer anchor text optimization benefits
Link Building Strategy DoFollow links are sought after for link building strategies NoFollow links are used for diversifying link profiles

What are Nofollow and Dofollow Links?

The Definition of Nofollow Links

Nofollow links are links that contain a special HTML attribute called the “nofollow” attribute. This attribute tells search engines to ignore the link when crawling and indexing a website. Nofollow links are typically used for links that don’t provide any SEO value, such as sponsored content or social media links.

The Definition of Dofollow Links

Dofollow links are links that don’t contain the nofollow attribute and so they pass link equity. or “link juice” as we call it in the industry, onto the linked website. These links are valuable when it comes to building a solid backlink profile and improving your website’s SEO value.

Dofollow links can help your website rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs) and drive organic traffic to your website.

The Relationship Between Nofollow and Dofollow Links

Nofollow and dofollow links are two types of links that exist on a website. Websites can contain a mix of both types of links, depending on how the links are added.

It’s important to have a healthy balance of both types of links in your website’s backlink profile to improve your SEO value.

DoFollow vs. NoFollow: What is the difference for SEO?

DoFollow and NoFollow are two different types of attributes that can be assigned to links on a web page. These attributes are used by search engines to determine how they should crawl and index those links, which in turn impacts how those links may affect search engine rankings.

A DoFollow link is a normal link that allows search engine spiders to follow the link and index the destination page. When a search engine crawler finds a DoFollow link, it will crawl the linked page and pass on any link equity (or “link juice”) to that page. This can potentially improve the search engine rankings of the destination page.

A NoFollow link, on the other hand, is a link that is specifically marked with a rel=”nofollow” attribute in the HTML code. This tells search engines not to follow the link or pass on any link equity to the linked page. NoFollow links were originally created as a way for webmasters to combat spam and prevent comment spam on their websites. However, they are also used by sites like Wikipedia to prevent link spamming and maintain editorial control over outbound links.

In terms of SEO, DoFollow links are generally considered more valuable than NoFollow links, as they can contribute to a page’s link equity and potentially improve its search engine rankings. However, it’s important to note that a natural link profile will contain both DoFollow and NoFollow links, and having a diverse link profile is generally considered a positive signal to search engines.

Why are Nofollow and Dofollow Links Important for SEO?

How Nofollow and Dofollow Links Affect SEO & Your Backlink Profile

Your website’s backlink profile is crucial when it comes to SEO value. Links from high-authority websites can improve your website’s credibility and help it rank higher on search engines.

Nofollow links don’t pass link equity to your website, but they can still provide value by driving traffic to your website and improving brand awareness.

Dofollow links, on the other hand, pass link equity to your website and can improve your website’s SEO value and ranking on SERPs.

The Impact of Nofollow and Dofollow Links on Your Website Traffic

Nofollow links can still drive traffic to your website, even if they don’t pass link equity. For example, if you have a link to your website in a social media post, that link is likely a nofollow link. However, that link can still drive traffic to your website and improve your brand awareness.

Dofollow links, on the other hand, can improve your website’s organic traffic and visibility on search engines.

How Nofollow and Dofollow Links Influence Your Website Rankings

Both nofollow and dofollow links can influence your website’s ranking on search engines.

Nofollow links can still provide value by driving traffic to your website and improving your website’s brand awareness.

Dofollow links pass link equity to your website and can improve your website’s trust and credibility, which can ultimately improve your website’s ranking on SERPs.

Are no follow links helpful SEO wise?

No-follow links do not directly contribute to the SEO of a website as they do not pass on link juice. However, they can still be helpful for SEO in other ways, like diversifying the link profile and increasing brand exposure.

A healthy mix of both no-follow and do-follow links looks more natural to search engines, so it is best if you have both.

How to Tell if a Link is Nofollow or Dofollow?

How to Check the HTML Code of a Website for Nofollow and Dofollow Links?

You can check the HTML code of a website to see if a link is nofollow or dofollow. Right-click on the link and select “Inspect Element” to view the HTML code.

If the link contains the nofollow attribute, it is a nofollow link. If the link doesn’t contain the nofollow attribute, it is a dofollow link.

How to Use Browser Extensions to Detect Nofollow and Dofollow Links?

There are browser extensions, such as MozBar, that can help detect whether a link is nofollow or dofollow. These extensions can highlight links on a website and indicate whether the links are nofollow or dofollow.

How to Find Nofollow and Dofollow Links with Online Tools?

There are also online tools, such as Ahrefs and SEMrush, that can help you identify nofollow and dofollow links on a website. These tools can give you insight into your website’s backlink profile and help you identify areas for improvement.

Dofollow vs Nofollow Links: The Differences Explained

The Role of Nofollow and Dofollow Links in Link Juice Flow

Link juice is the term used to describe the value passed from one website to another through links.

Dofollow links pass link juice to the linked website, while nofollow links don’t. This means that dofollow links are more valuable when it comes to improving your website’s SEO value and ranking on search engines.

The Effect of Nofollow and Dofollow Links on Search Engine Crawling and Indexation

Nofollow links tell search engines to ignore the link when crawling and indexing a website. This means that nofollow links don’t improve your website’s indexation or crawlability. Dofollow links, on the other hand, can improve your website’s indexation and crawlability by passing link equity to your website.

The Value of Nofollow and Dofollow Links in Your SEO Strategy

Nofollow and dofollow links both play a valuable role in your website’s SEO strategy.

Nofollow links can be used for affiliate links and sponsored content to comply with search engine guidelines. Dofollow links, on the other hand, can improve your website’s SEO value and ranking on search engines.

Can nofollow links hurt you?

Nofollow links are safe and cannot hurt your SEO or website ranking. This is because nofollow links do not pass any link juice or authority to the linked website. Be aware though, that having too many nofollow links on your website or linking to low-quality websites with nofollow links, can still be a bad user experience and potentially harm your website’s reputation.

Has a nofollow link from a relevant Forbes article really the same SEO value as a nofollow link from a spammy comment on a random website?

A nofollow link from a relevant, authoritative source like Forbes can potentially still provide some value in terms of brand exposure and referral traffic, whereas a nofollow link from a spammy comment on a random website is unlikely to provide any value at all. Neither of these types of links would pass PageRank or directly improve SEO though.

Nofollow vs. Dofollow: Which Should You Use for External Links?

To decide this, you need to think how you want to instruct search engines to follow and index the links.

A “dofollow” link is a standard link that search engines will follow and use to determine the relevance and authority of the linked website. Dofollow links are considered as a vote of confidence for the receiving website, and they can have a positive impact on search engine rankings.

On the other hand, a “nofollow” link is a link that tells search engines not to follow or associate any kind of link juice with the linked website. This means that nofollow links do not pass on any search engine value or authority to the linked website. They are often used for paid or sponsored links to comply with search engine guidelines and avoid penalties.

If you want to give a boost to the authority of a linked website, use dofollow links. If you are including links purely for informational or promotional purposes, or if you are unsure of the quality of the linked website, use nofollow links.

How to Use Nofollow Links in Your SEO Strategy?

When to Use Nofollow Links for External and Internal Links?

Nofollow links should be used for external links that don’t provide any SEO value, such as sponsored content or social media links. Nofollow links can also be used for internal links that shouldn’t pass link equity, such as login or search result pages.

How to Add Nofollow Links in HTML Code?

You can add the nofollow attribute to a link by adding “rel=’nofollow'” to the HTML code. For example: <a href=”https://www.example.com” rel=”nofollow”>Example Link</a>

The Benefits of Using Nofollow Links in Affiliate Links and Sponsored Content

Using nofollow links in affiliate links and sponsored content can help your website comply with search engine guidelines and avoid penalties. By using nofollow links, you’re also disclosing that the link is sponsored or affiliated, which can improve your website’s transparency and credibility.

What to Consider When Having Your Links Published on Other Websites, Podcasts and Blogs?

Should You request a nofollow or dofollow link when You are getting a Backlink?

There are several factors to keep in mind:
1. Relevance: The website, podcast, or blog where your link will be published should be relevant to your industry or niche.
2. Domain authority: The website, podcast, or blog should have a high domain authority, indicating that it is a reputable and trustworthy source of information.
3. Traffic: The website, podcast, or blog should have a significant amount of traffic, ensuring that your link will be seen by a sufficient number of people.
4. Audience: The website, podcast, or blog should have an audience that is likely to be interested in your content and offerings.
5. Link placement: The link should be placed within relevant and informative content, rather than just being included in a list of links.

When it comes to requesting a nofollow or dofollow link, it really depends on your goals for the backlink. If your goal is purely for SEO benefits, then you may want to request a dofollow link, as these links pass on “link juice” which can help to improve your search engine rankings. However, it’s important to remember that Google’s guidelines state that any link intended to manipulate PageRank or a site’s ranking in Google search results may be considered a violation of their guidelines.

If your goal is to simply generate referral traffic from the website you are getting the backlink from, a nofollow link is (almost) perfectly fine.

It’s important to focus on quality content and links that are relevant and provide value for the audience, rather than just focusing on link-building tactics.

Are there different types of backlinks?

There are!

1. Natural links: These are links that are added by others without your intervention. They usually come as a result of a piece of content you created that people found useful and decided to link to.
2. Manual links: These are links that are obtained through manual outreach and negotiation. You can ask bloggers, website owners, or influencers to link to your content.
3. Editorial links: These are links that are included by other websites voluntarily. This is often the result of high-quality content that resonates well with the target website’s readers.
4. Reciprocal links: These are links that you and another website agree to exchange. This type of link building is often frowned upon by Google.
5. Forum signature links: These are links that appear in the signature line of your forum posts. They are generally low quality and not recommended.
6. Blog comment links: These are links that appear in the comment section of a blog. They are often considered spammy and should be avoided.
7. Directory links: These are links that are obtained by listing your website in a directory. They are generally low quality and not recommended.
8. Social media links: These are links that are obtained by sharing your content on social media platforms. They are important for increasing brand awareness and driving traffic to your website.

Summary: The Most Important Things To Remember About Nofollow and Dofollow Links

Nofollow and dofollow links are important when it comes to building a solid backlink profile and improving your website’s SEO value.

Nofollow links don’t pass link equity to your website, but they can still provide value by driving traffic to your website and improving your brand awareness.

Dofollow links pass link equity to your website and can improve your website’s SEO value and ranking on SERPs.

It’s important to have a healthy balance of both types of links in your website’s backlink profile to improve your SEO value and ranking on search engines.

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