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  • Crawlable, Followable Links

     It’s time for another SEO post about link building, and we need to look at what links you have that might not be as good as you thought they were.

    Link building and content are the two things you do that have the most impact on your website. Quantity helps in each case, but only if the quality is there as well, so we’ll talk about links here and content in the next post.

    An important part of marketing and optimizing websites is gathering links from a variety of sources. However, web marketers can often get distracted by quantity goals and lose sight of the quality. Link building efforts for search engine optimization purposes require clean links that can be crawled by search engine bots. A “clean crawlable link”is one that is not blocked. Blocking can occur with a Robots NoIndex meta tag, JavaScript redirect, robots.txt or a NoFollow tag.

    If link requests, article submissions or other quickie ways to get links, you’ll want to check and make sure you aren’t doing it for worthless links. then it’s important to make sure the links acquired are good for both users and search engines.

    Look for these things to see if the link is a good one:

    Check the robots meta tag by looking at the page source code. If there is no robots tag, good. If there is a robots meta tag and it looks like this:

    meta name = “robots” content = “index, follow”

    good. If there is a robots meta tag and it looks like this:

    “robots” content = “noindex, nofollow”

    “robots” content = “index, nofollow”

    then that’s NOT good.

    Check for JavaScript redirects of links from a desired page by putting your cursor over the link and looking at the url that in the status bar. Correct url? Probably good. You can double check with special tools if you are worried that it is being faked.

    Check to see if robots.txt is blocking spiders from crawling links, and add the text “/robots.txt” to the end of the URL if necessary.

    If you see something with a lot of ‘Disallow’ lines, you need to make sure none of them is directing the spiders not to crawl your links.

    Check if there is a no follow tag by right clicking on the link URL with Firefox and click on “Properties”. If there is an attribute called:

    rel = nofollow.

    Thats NOT good. If there is no attribute, good.

    Always ask any SEO firm if the links they are getting for you are clean, crawlable, followable links. Check link sources to determine their value for SEO benefit by following the above tips to make sure.

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