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Number Of Links Per Page
Posted 12 March 2008 - 01:59 PM
Anybody have any thoughts on this topic?
Posted 13 March 2008 - 11:04 AM
I'm not sure if anyone's figured out the real maximum number of links they'll index per page. My suspicion is it might vary depending on other factors: what other content there is on the link-laden page, how "important" they judge the link-laden page to be, possibly even what they think about the other pages the links point to. I don't know that there's any way to know for sure, though.
To my mind, any "limits" on links per page is a usability and conversions issue more than an SE issue. If it's a "regular" page on the website, too many links presented all at once will confuse visitors. And confused visitors don't buy -- they leave to find somewhere else that's less confusing. That behavior has been well-documented in usability studies.
If it's a directory or sitemap-type page, you can often get away with more links, but again, beyond a certain point you're simply making it harder for visitors to find what they're looking for. At that point, it might be helpful to refine the classification of the links so they can be broken down into smaller "chunks" to make it easier for visitors to grasp.
At least to an extent, the maximum number you can include without sacrificing usability or conversions will vary depending on presentation. If the links are included in drop-down menus, for instance, you can often get away with more of them because only the top level of links displays initially. Customers aren't overwhelmed when they first encounter the page, and -- assuming the menus are thoughtfully arranged -- can use the menu system to drill down to the specific page they're looking for.
But a page with hundreds of links, all staring a visitor in the face right from the get-go? That's a usability nightmare.
Posted 13 March 2008 - 11:10 AM
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