How do Outbound Links Affect SEO?
Many webmasters are still unsure about the effect that outbound links can have on an SEO strategy. Is it in your best interests to link to websites in order to add value to your website and your content? Does the number of links you have make any difference when it comes to your search engine ranking? What about the number of people that click on your links? Does this have any influence? If you’re unsure about how outbound links affect SEO hopefully we can help you.
The Impact of Outbound Links
Whilst it’s impossible to tell how Google determine their search engine rankings, many SEO experts believe that outbound links certainly play a part. This is because links added to a website show that you are helping your readers by directing them towards further information that they may find useful. Many also believe that the more people that click on your links, the more beneficial it is for your SEO – basically because Google can determine there is a lot of user activity happening on your website which is a positive thing in their eyes.
Choosing Sites to Link To
However before you start linking to any old site to improve your search engine ranking, you are advised to think about a strategy. Many SEO experts will tell you that linking to as many sites as possible is a bad idea; in fact you need to treat your outbound links in a similar way as you do inbound links. Link to credible sites in a similar niche and your linking strategy will work well; link to spam sites or irrelevant sites and you are not only hurting your SEO strategy but your readers too!
Link in Moderation
Aside from linking to relevant sites it’s a good idea to only link to sites that can help guide your readers to further information. Mass linking can make your site look spammy and it can be mistaken for a link farm if you’re not careful. Both of these can hurt your website’s SEO. In the case of affiliate marketing sites mass linking may be inevitable so in cases like these try and make sure your website isn’t purely promotional – try and give your readers some useful content too.
Checking Your Outbound Links
If you are sceptical about placing outbound links on your site due to a loss of traffic you should think about the bigger picture. The more your readers find the valuable information they need, the more likely they are to see you as an expert and return to your site in the future. This is always good from a marketing perspective. Always make sure however that your links are only to credible sites in a similar niche. By checking your links regularly you can make sure that your links are still in order. The Pingler Link Extractor Tool can help you to do this. As long as you’re linking to valuable information, an outbound linking strategy can be a good investment of time and effort.