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SEO Website Audit

Twitter Question of the Week

June 2, 2010
This week's Twitter Question was:

Do you ever use nofollow links, and if so, for what purpose?

Here's how my Twitter followers responded:

SEOSEM: Sometimes nofollow on About Us or Privacy links.

netmeg: Yep, when I sell text ads on my sites. They are all nofollowed. Regular links are left alone.

kokopoko2: For those privacy policy pages, etc. Stuff that doesn't need to be indexed.

DonnaFontenot: Yes, for affiliate links, cuz Google whacked my TBPR long ago to show disapproval. No reason not to for aff. links anyway. It's possible that G thought some of my afflinks were really paid links, so NF'ing the rest may be unnecessary but I use caution.

Axemedia: I still have some small sites on which I've not gotten around to undoing the old nofollow siloing.

MCIMaui: If you're concerned about duplicate content, such as a print page, putting nofollow into play can be a big help.

Jill's Response: Hmm...not too sure about MCIMaui's response. Nofollow is not at all a "noindex" tag. It just tells Google not to pass link popularity to the page linked to. I would definitely not recommend using it as a way to stop duplicate content issues, because I believe you'd be sorely disappointed in the results.

And it also doesn't make sense to me to use nofollow on Privacy Policy links. I'm happy to pass link juice to those pages because they all link back to my important pages and pass their own link juice to them.

I mostly just use the nofollow attribute on blog comments. And I've experimented with adding it to links that have generic anchor text such as "click here" when there's already a more descriptive anchor text link somewhere else on the page. But I have no idea if it actually makes a difference in that situation or not. I figure it can't hurt!


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 Pam Schams said:
Would like to hear more about 'no following' ads that are placed on our site that go to other similar / related sites.

An example: We have bio-science sites and sometimes there are ads for bio-science conferences on our site.

We also sell ad space, but it's all relevant science-related ads that go to manufacturer's websites.

Would any of these be good to no follow to save link juice on our side?

Page link example (below)

Thx
 Jill Whalen said:
@Pam, you wouldn't nofollow the ads to "save link juice." The only reason why you would do it is because Google wants you to mark paid links (ads) as such so that they don't factor them into their PageRank/link pop. algorithm.

You don't have to worry about hoarding your own PageRank or anything like that. That notion is old wive's tale stuff.
 Anonymous said:
Great, thanks Jill.