Internal Linking Strategy and Best Practices Guide

by | Marketing Strategy, Search Engine Optimization

Internal Linking Strategy and Best Practices

What Are Internal Links?

An internal link is a link on one page of your website that directly links to another page on your website. Both users and search engines (like Google) use these internal links to find content on your site. Internal links on your website are more helpful for your front end users when it comes to finding other pages or blog posts on your site. Yet they are very important in regards to your SEO and SEO Strategy.

Contextual Links

As there are several different types of internal links, we are going to be mainly talking about contextual links today in this article. The contextual links are used to point your users to interesting articles, blog posts or related content that you have already created else where on your site. In regards to the SEO side of things, the more internal contextual links an article receives the more valuable a search engine will perceive that page to be. Thus making an SEO internal linking structure important in your overall SEO strategy.

As there are several different types of internal links, we are going to be mainly talking about contextual links today in this article. The contextual links are used to point your users to interesting articles, blog posts or related content that you have already created else where on your site. In regards to the SEO side of things, the more internal contextual links an article receives the more valuable a search engine will perceive that page to be. Thus making an SEO internal linking structure important in your overall SEO strategy.

Why are internal links important to my overall SEO strategy?

Search engines such as Google, Yahoo, or Bing has something called crawl bots; the job of these bots are to follow links around the internet. These crawl bots will rank or decide not to rank your site due to many factors and these internal links is one of those factors. The more internal and external links a page your site has is a key performance indication that the page, article, blog etc. is of high value and deserves traffic.

As a website owner you can control your internal link structure in comparison to your external links, which you cannot control. So let me show you how to take control and instruct, not only your visitors but Google on which are the most import pages on your site to visit.

Internal Linking Best Practices

To properly set up your internal linking strategy, we must first take several things into account which we will discuss below:

1. Internal Linking Structure

Internal Linking SEO Strategy - Pyramid strategy - Amplificl Lab

2. Deciding on Cornerstone Content

So this might sound really annoying since a lot of people use this analogy for several different things, but your website is like a pyramid! On the tippy top of your pyramid you have your homepage, followed by your categories and different sections. Even further down you will have your pages and posts with another layer of subcategories and tags sprinkled throughout (but that’s another article for another day).

Your website menu and organization of your different categories and section should represent this top down approach. Feel free to use our website and blog as an example 😉.

3. Linking Hierarchical Pages

Have you properly linked your hierarchical pages on your website?

It is important to link parent pages to child pages and child pages to parent pages. Also, if those child pages have sibling pages, it is also important to link the sibling pages to each other.

What is a hierarchical post or page type?

 

Parent, Child, and Sibling hierarchical internal linking strategy

So there are three different types of hierarchical post or page types:

 
A. Parent page or post
B. Child page or post
C. Sibling page or post
 

So to keep in line the hierarchy in your family, that the parents are more important, the children are second most important and your sibling is least important (we hope that’s not true and you cherish everyone equality in real life).
A child post can only have one parent, but a parent page can have multiple children. Those children can be linked together which then creates a sibling relationship between them.

For example, a website might have a FAQ, Return & Exchanges, Shipping and Handling pages but you would more than likely find those under the Customer Service page of the website. This means that the parent page is the Customer Service page which would make the FAQ, Return & Exchanges, Shipping and Handling pages which child pages, but since there is more than one child page, they would be considered sibling pages.

4. Adding Contextual Links

After deciding on your Internal Linking Structure, you will need to now implement it through linking them with each other through various articles and pages you have created. You can link these pages directly from sentences in your body copy.

Spanish Paella Wikipedia - Internal Linking Example with arrows - Amplific Lab

See our delicious example above! These are some of the finest internal links you can find… Paella on Wikipedia

Remember, you want to remind your users and especially search consoles like Google that these articles or pages are related. It is imperative that you include your cornerstone content as well. Both cornerstone page and other supporting pages will both internally link to each other. Feel free to take this blog post or our other blog posts as an example to follow on your own site.

5. Adding Navigational Links

After you have finished linking contextual links you can try adding navigational links to your cornerstone content to make it seem more authoritative to the different search consoles. You can do this by adding links from the homepage of your website or top navigational pages. This however should only be done with posts and pages that are the absolute most important to your business.

6. Adding Links To Your Taxonomies

Taxonomies in SEO is how a group of things are organized. This organizational structure can be hierarchical like we explain above with parent, child and sibling pages that could be based on using a category and subcategory system to keep them organized. Taxonomy structures can also be non-hierarchical such as using Tags (I will explain all of this below).

SEO Taxonomies Conceptualized Example

So for example, one of our clients sells wine and their taxonomy system uses a hierarchical system composted of categories and subcategories. Their main category is “wine” while their subcategories might be “Pinot noir”, “Chardonnay”, “Rosé”, “Shiraz”, “Barolo” for example, which are different types of wine. While also at the same time they could use a non-hierarchical tag system to help describe the type of wine someone might be looking for: “dry”, “sweet”, “buttery”, “rich”, “Intense”, and “lush” to explain what type of wine they want to learn about or buy.

Internally linking to your taxonomy pages will not only help your users quickly navigate around and find more great content but will teach search engines the structure of your blog and related posts.

7. Adding Links To Recent and Popular Posts

The last recommendation to implement is adding internal links to recent and popular posts. This can be done through adding these posts on the sidebar, footer or at the bottom of every post/page.

We want to keep users on our site as long as possible and by giving them the most recent or best content on your site will incentivize them to stay a little longer. By making these post easier for users to visits, will increase overall traffic and more traffic on your site is a positive sign to Google and other search engines. (Check out at the bottom of this post, we do the same thing as we want you to stay on our site and keep learning. Our articles help you and which also helps us with our SEO, so please keep reading on with your bad self!)

Happy Linking!

To be completely blunt, without links your content cannot rank! 


So please take our guide above and plan a solid internal linking strategy to help users and search engines which content is related, important and valuable. We are confident that if you follow the guidelines in this post, users and search engines will be able to better understand your site and content. With this new found understanding will come an increase in your chance of ranking and being rewarded with free traffic through Search Engine Optimization.

Good luck and let us know if you need any help along the way!
💙
The Amplific Lab Team

BTW!

We recently have been recognized as of of the Top 30 SEO Companies in Oregon! Super exciting news for us. Upwards and Onwards!

More Blog Goodness? ⬇️

Six Effective Lead Generation Strategies For Your Business

Generating qualified leads should be a topic priority in your marketing strategy. This Lead Generation Article will help boost yours! 🚀

How To Create a Lead Magnet

Learn the basics to create a lead magnet or freebie that will help you generate leads and make your sales funnel more effective.

7 Information Product Ideas to Sell Online in 2023

Are you an existing expert in an interesting industry? Did you know yoou able to create a passive income by selling your knowledge through an online information product. Learn more!

How To Create A Welcome Email

In this article you will learn how to create a welcome email that will keep your subscribers interested in your brand. You will find a list of things to include in a welcome email, as well as advice and examples to take your emails to the next level.  WHAT MAKES...

How To Become Organized When Working From Home: 10 Game Changing Habits

Due to the social distancing nature of the Pandemic, the majority of the world workforce was sent home to conduct their daily work tasks. You might have been one of these people that needed to adapt your work-life overnight, you also might have had some issues...

10 Tips To Make Your Instagram Attractive

With a community that keeps growing every day, Instagram is one of the most attractive online platforms for businesses. A recent forecast suggests that there will be 1.2 billion users on Instagram by 2023. That means that you too can have a piece of that Instagram...

Four habits to improve your work-life balance

  Work-life balance is when you find harmony between your work and your personal life. Finding the perfect work-life balance is different for each person since we all have different personalities and needs. But it means that you can work and be productive,...

More Awesomeness Directly to Your Inbox!