3 Types of Internal Links and How to Get the Most From Them

3 types of internal links
Internal links are links that connect one page to another within the same domain. Like external links -- those that connect pages across different websites -- they are an important aspect of SEO. However, they do much more. And unlike external links, they are easy to make and manage.

Internal linking is critical for three main reasons: 

  1. Sharing authority within the website: Internal links help pass authority from one page to another. 
  2. Guiding visitors through the site: Apart from navigation links (a type of internal link), links within the web content guide visitors through pages that are likely to be relevant to them. 
  3. Prompting consumers to take action: There are links that prompt buyers to take action, whether it's clicking on the next page or completing the journey. 
Out of these reasons, we can find three types of internal links, their nature and how to make the best use of them.

1. Links that enhance SEO

While high quality external links can boost the overall authority of your website, internal links cannot. What they can do is boost the page authority across the website by passing it from high- to low-authority pages. Ultimately, these pages can get higher ranking in search engines.

Some pages on your website have more authority than others. A good example is the home page, which has many links pointing to it. Links from such a page will pass this authority and SEO value to the target pages. To boost the authority of the lower ranked pages, all you need to do is log into your website manager and link to them from the high-ranking pages. This is easy, free and quick but the difference in SEO could be big.

To find out which of your web pages have high authority and which ones need it most, simply use a link checker tool like Backlinks from Neil Patel or Semrush’s Site overview option.. Alternatively, you can look in the Google Search Console by checking your "most linked content" report. You'll see the pages that have the most external links and authority.

When linking, use the most appropriate anchor text. Avoid generic anchor such as "see more" or "click here" as these don't readily communicate the relevance of the target page to the content on the linking page. Additionally, keep the reader in mind to avoid overdoing it for SEO.

2. Links that enhance user experience

Like external links, high-quality internal links are relevant in context. This is not only for search engines. In fact, it's more importantly for website users. By making it easy for users to find related content that's relevant to them at the time, internal linking helps improve user experience. A great user experience reduces the bounce rate, increases the conversion rate and boosts referral traffic through content sharing.

One prime area to harvest internal links is your blog. Whenever you're creating new content, it's likely that you'll talk about something related to what you've already covered before. This is a great opportunity to present more of your amazing content to the reader. Not pointing them in that direction could actually be disservice.

You can use internal links to send users towards high-performing content. This increases not just the potential for engagement through commenting and sharing but also the ranking of that page by boosting its authority.

A high level of traffic could also indicate that users are engaging with the content. Therefore you want to know the pages with the most traffic. To determine this, Google Analytics can help. Choose a long period of time keeping in mind special events that might have caused dramatic changes in traffic. This will help you understand why the content is performing as it is. Then find internal linking opportunities keeping in mind relevance and user experience.

3. Links that enhance the CTA

As a digital marketer, your end goal is to get users to take action. An effective call-to-action (CTA) motivates consumers and nudges them to take a step further. A link within the CTA not only promotes, it's also convenient for the user. This type of link isn't limited to text. It can be a banner, an image or even a symbol. Usually, this is for visual appeal. Without internal links, it'd be difficult to guide users where you need them most, hurting your ability to convert.

links that enhance the call to action

You can use links in the CTA to promote other pages, get email subscribers and improve social shares among other things. To increase your chances, present the link at the moment when the user is most likely to take the next step. For instance, a link to the "contact us" page is usually presented near the end of the content. This is convenient for the user as they don't have to look for the page. It also increases your chances of getting them to contact you.

Conclusion

Internal links are incredibly easy to manage because you have total control of your website. They shouldn't take too much of your time. However, haphazardly adding links without regard for relevance and strategy will cost you. You won't make such a mistake if you know the different types of internal links and the purpose they serve. All that's left is to know how to optimise them to function more effectively, which has also been covered.

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