Welcome to part five in this search engine positioning series. Last week we discussed importance of content optimization. In part five we will cover your website's internal linking structure and role that it plays in ranking highly, and in ranking for multiple phrases.
While this aspect is not necessarily single most important of ten steps it can be difference between first page and second page rankings, and can make all difference in world when you are trying to rank your website for multiple phrases.
Over this series we will cover ten key aspects to a solid search engine positioning campaign.
The Ten Steps We Will Go Through Are:
- Keyword Selection
- Content Creation
- Site Structure
- Internal Linking
- Human Testing
- Link Building
- The Extras
Step Five - Internal Linking
With all talk out there about linking, one might be under impression that only links that count are those from other websites. While these links certainly play an important role (as will be discussed in part eight of this series) these are certainly not only important links.
When you're about to launch into your link work why not stop and consider ones that are easiest to attain and maximize first. That would be, ones right there on your own site and those which you have total and complete control of. Properly used internal links can be a useful weapon in your SEO arsenal.
The internal linking structure can:
- Insure that your website gets properly spidered and that all pages are found by search engines
- Build relevancy of a page to a keyword phrase
- Increase PageRank of an internal page
Here is how internal linking structure can affect these areas and how to maximize effectiveness of internal linking on your own website.
Getting Your Website Spidered
Insuring that every page of your website gets found by search engine spiders is probably simplest thing you can do for your rankings. Not only will this increase number of pages that a search engine credits your site with, but it also increases number of phrases that your website has potential to rank for.
I have seen websites that, once search engines find all of their pages, find that they are ranking on first page and seeing traffic from phrases they never thought to even research or target.
This may not necessarily be case for you however having a larger site with more pages related to your content will boost value of your site overall. You are offering this content to your visitors, so why hide it from search engines.
Pages can be hidden from search engines if linking is done in a way that they cannot read. This is case in many navigation scripts. If your site uses a script-based navigation system then you will want to consider implementation of one of internal linking structures noted further in article.
Additionally, image-based navigation is spiderable however search engines can't see what an image is and thus, cannot assign any relevancy from an image to page it links to other than assigning it a place in your website hierarchy.
Building The Relevancy Of A Page To A Keyword Phrase
Anyone who wants to get their website into top positions on search engines for multiple phrases must start out with a clearly defined objective, including which pages should rank for which phrases. Generally speaking it will be your homepage that you will use to target your most competitive phrase and move on to targeting less competitive phrases on your internal pages.
To help build relevancy of a page to a keyword phrase you will want to use keyword phrase in anchor text of links to that page. Let's assume that you have a website hosting company. Rather than linking to your homepage with anchor text "home" link to it with text "web hosting main". This will attach words "web" and "hosting" and "main" to your homepage. You can obviously leave word "main" out if desirable however in many cases it does work for visitor (you know, those people you're actually building site for).
This doesn't stop at homepage. If you are linking to internal pages either through your navigation, footers, or inline text links - try to use phrases that you would want to target on those pages as linking text. For example, if that hosting company offered and wanted to target "dedicated hosting", rather than leaving link at solely beautiful graphic in middle of homepage they would want to include a text link with anchor text "dedicated hosting" and link to this internal page. This will tie keywords "dedicated hosting" to page.
In a field as competitive as hosting this alone won't launch site to top ten however it'll give it a boost and in SEO, especially for competitive phrases, every advantage you can give your site counts.
Increasing The PageRank Of Internal Pages