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Using Nofollow Tag On Your Own Internal Links?


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122 replies to this topic

#1 Ramona

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Posted 21 September 2005 - 10:54 PM

(Please note: I did do some searches on the forum for "nofollow tag" before I entered this question, in an attempt to avoid duplicating another discussion. I didn't find anything that seemed to reference this question, but I limited my searching time to that term. If there's already another discussion here referencing my question, if whoever reading could just point me toward that discussion and forgive the redundancy, that would most kind. smile.gif )

Hi there, first post here, but I have been trolling about for some time now. I just read the following in a newsletter. After reading the [url=http://www.highrankings.com/forum/index.php?act=boardrules]Forum Rules[/url], I'm going to leave the origin of the text "anonymous" as I think that would better comply. But no, have no association with them.

(POST EDITED AS PER JILL'S POST BELOW: No longer anonymous, my quoted text can be found here:
www.internetmarketingsecrets.com/ims70.html
Yes, I know it was from a few months ago, but I was reading some older newsletters I neglected until now and thought it was (at least, allegedly) still relevant.)

OK, the following struck me as odd, because it's different from what my decidedly NON-expert self had read before, but I do do a lot of reading on such:

QUOTE
"The other side of the nofollow tag, is that you can take advantage of it inside your own web sites. Think about all the low value, or no money pages on your site... pages like about us, where to find us, contact us. Every link leaving your home page "bleeds" PageRank to those pages and you'll want to stop that!

Instead of using normal static hyperlinks you can use nofollow links instead. This lets the "human mouse clicking visitor" find the pages on their own, but totally blocks the search engine from finding them.

So not only can you provide visitors with a rich user experience, you can conserve your PageRank and link popularity within your home page.

So why is that a good thing? You can aim your PR and link popularity at your important money making product pages... The ones YOU choose!"


OK, so in case it wasn't already obvious, this individual is talking about entire PAGES on your site. I understand that unscrupulous link exchangers might try to insert "nofollow" instructions in their metatags on pages featuring their agreed upon outgoing links to try to make the link exchange look one-way. I think that's reprehensible if you agreed to exchange links, but that's another story. This author seems to be saying that the pages on your own site (that do NOT necessarily contain outgoing links to other sites) you might still want to instruct as "nofollow."

Is that true? I'd just never heard anything of this nature before. I've never used the "nofollow" tag for anything. If I didn't want it publicly accessible, I wouldn't put it on a publicly accessible page/page clickable from the index page, is my thinking thus far. I doubt many engine searchers find our "contact us" page and land on that DIRECTLY from an engine, but I figured it they did somehow . . . so what? But I do have pages on a couple of sites that I could "nofollow" if it meant anything at all, "contact us" pages and the like, with little or no other content on them, if by doing just that simple thing it might actually boost the "findability" of the index or other pages I do want to get seen.

Opinions, anyone? thinking.gif

Edited by qwerty, 21 September 2005 - 11:43 PM.


#2 Scottie

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Posted 21 September 2005 - 11:00 PM

My personal, unscientific-and-not-tested belief is that nofollow tells the search engines you don't monitor the content on that page.

Maybe so, maybe not. I wouldn't use the tag, I'd just clean up the links I didn't want to have on my site. If you use them to "hide" links, I think it will come back to bite you in the rear- kind of like yelling, "Hey Google, I'm going to pull a fast one on you. LOOK AT THIS PAGE!"

If I worked for a search engine, I think I would be very interested in researching what people used "nofollow" tags for.

Welcome to the forum, Ramona! hi.gif

#3 Jill

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Posted 21 September 2005 - 11:05 PM

Welcome Ramona! bye1.gif

Actually, our Forum Rules state that we must attribute any content that you paste from another site or message. So please add that to your original post if you would.

What the person is talking about, sounds like it would be better served by robots.txt which is specifically for that purpose.

#4 Ramona

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Posted 21 September 2005 - 11:26 PM

Thanks for your feedback, Scottie and Jill. smile.gif

Sorry about the misunderstanding, I did modify my original text as per your instruction.

QUOTE(Jill @ Sep 21 2005, 09:05 PM)
What the person is talking about, sounds like it would be better served by robots.txt which is specifically for that purpose.
View Post


Weeelll . . . that's certainly what *I* would do, rather than designing pages, linking them from my index page, then inserting a tag to attempt to keep them "secret." Or, I just wouldn't link them from other pages linked from the index or other linked pages at all. But I was more specifically wondering if there were PageRank/"findability" benefits above and beyond that. I have pages with less attractive content to an initial surfer of the site (again, "contact us" and the like) that I wouldn't care about being in any search engine's index. But, I never thought to EXCLUDE them from any index either. This site/person seems to be saying perhaps I should, for PageRank reasons.

unsure.gif

#5 Ramona

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Posted 21 September 2005 - 11:32 PM

Oh . . heck, I think I may have violated another rule by posting a link. I guess I should have attributed the quoted text without including the URL? But would that be enough attribution to get to the quoted text for any needed verification?

I'm just not sure. Again, apologies. If what I've done is against forum guidelines, maybe someone could just edit my post or post again here with exactly how I should attribute the quoted text.

Thanks. eek.gif

#6 qwerty

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Posted 21 September 2005 - 11:41 PM

Piece of cake, Ramona. You can post a URL without having the forum turn it into a link by just skipping the http:// bit. I'll go edit your post.

And welcome to HR, by the way hi.gif

#7 Ramona

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Posted 22 September 2005 - 12:15 AM

Thanks, qwerty. Sorry to be such a dolt and require your time via . . . my doltishness. Thanks for your patience and good humor.

I followed the thread Scottie posted above. It still seems like there's a good bit of confusion regarding this issue. I'd still very much welcome any comments on my original question . . . but unless someone here posts something extra-compelling . . . I think I'm going to ignore the advice in the text I quoted above and just continue with mine own personal practice of never using the nofollow tag.

Again, suggestions and/or additional elucidations welcome, but . . . it just really seems logically, practically, and philosophically ODD (imho) to have anything at all linked from your index or another public page and THEN try to tell a search engine to "not go there." Scottie's comment that it might be a "flag" of some sort is probably quite apt, but even if not, it's still just too much of a snafu for me. If it's not "public" content, for a searcher or an engine or whatever, then don't link it on an easily found or already publicized page and give it no security/password. If it IS public content, then anyone/anything including a search engine should be able to willfully and without any restraint . . . go there.

I'm having a hard time wrapping my brain around anything else . . . which was why I found the text I quoted odd, and why I wanted to ask about it here. Thanks!

#8 qwerty

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Posted 22 September 2005 - 12:35 AM

Another thing to consider is that all this talk of PR leakage is just silly, for the most part. It is true that if a page links to five pages, it's sending more PR to each of them than it would if it was linking to six pages, but who cares? PR is nowhere near as important as a lot of people make it out to be, and the difference is negligible.

The trick is that there's no trick. Link to pages in a way that makes it easy for people to find the information they need.

#9 Jill

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Posted 22 September 2005 - 06:47 AM

QUOTE
This site/person seems to be saying perhaps I should, for PageRank reasons.


No offense to the original writer, but that's just plain dumb, in my opinion.

#10 Scottie

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Posted 22 September 2005 - 09:20 AM

Oh heck, go on and offend the original writer and maybe they'll stop sharing their "secrets" and confusing people. How can we be more offensive, do you think? wink.gif

#11 Jill

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Posted 22 September 2005 - 11:16 AM

QUOTE
Oh heck, go on and offend the original writer and maybe they'll stop sharing their "secrets" and confusing people.


oooooh! Springer Forum Marketing at its best?

#12 Michael Martinez

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Posted 22 September 2005 - 11:48 AM

People who talk about "bleeding PageRank" don't know what they are talking about, but even among that crowd, most of them agree that you would WANT to use your internal linkage to puff up your PageRank.

So, anyone who advises you to use REL=NOFOLLOW on your internal linkage REALLY doesn't know what they are talking about.

The author of that newsletter is misinforming his readers, and it's advice you can safely disregard.

You cannot "bleed" PageRank. And you certainly only hurt yourself by telling search engines that you have unimportant pages by using REL=NOFOLLOW when linking to your own pages. You might as well stamp them as "SPAMMY, CRUMBY, AND NOT WORTH INDEXING" because that is what you are telling the search engines who honor REL=NOFOLLOW.

#13 bkernst

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Posted 23 September 2005 - 08:40 AM

The only real use for NOFOLLOW (and NOINDEX) is using it on pages that are purely login pages, which you would not want to have indexed purely for security reasons. Other than that you would want to have every page indexed.

The PageRank bleeding is nonsense. As already stated, you want to use your PageRank from any of your pages to help with the PageRank of other pages and external links to related sites that link back to you. I have done this to get the rankings of my own site up, by linking to a client, and the client has linked back to my site. The result was that the rankings for both sites improved.

#14 Robert813

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Posted 25 September 2005 - 05:44 AM

Hi Everyone,
I'm new to not only this board but also to e-commerce and SEO. My day job is VP of Operations for high-speed Internet and satellite tv company I'm developing a line of e-commerce stores and have been diligently studying SEO for about 1 1/2 years. I humbly admit that I am not the "practiced" experts that many of you are. It can be very confusing at times with all the different and conflicting info out there.

I do use Optilink and I have read "Dynamic Linking" from the creator of Optilink and it sounds like it makes sense to me to use the NOFOLLOW tag. What he says is that a page does not "bleed" PR but it passes its PR on. The page that contains the link does not "give up" an PR but what it gives is a "vote" based on its own PR and how many pages it "votes for " using links. So if a page "votes' for only 3 pages rather than 4, the PR of the home page distrubutes its PR in a more concentrated manner.

Since getting a top Google position rely's heavily on page reputation and PR it only makes sense to control the PR of inside pages if we can.

Google itself endorses this look at item #14 here www.google.com/webmasters/bot.html#whatlinks

url delinked as per [url=http://www.highrankings.com/forum/index.php?act=boardrules]Forum Rules[/url]

Edited by robwatts, 25 September 2005 - 06:04 AM.


#15 sonnyyu

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Posted 25 September 2005 - 06:59 AM

Google itself uses this look at www.google.com/hurricane.html, search source code rel=nofollow".

My $0.02




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