Do-follow and no-follow links are two types of hyperlinks used in web content. They play a crucial role in search engine optimization (SEO), as they affect a website’s search engine rankings and the flow of link equity (also known as “link juice”) from one webpage to another. Let’s explore these two types of links in more detail:
- Definition: Do-follow links are standard hyperlinks that allow search engines to follow them and pass on link equity to the linked page. In other words, when a search engine crawler encounters a do-follow link, it will index the linked page and consider it as a ranking factor.
- Attributes: Do-follow links do not have a specific HTML attribute associated with them. By default, all regular HTML links are considered do-follow unless explicitly marked as no-follow.
- Use Cases:
- Do-follow links are typically used for editorial, contextual links within content.
- They are valuable for SEO because they can contribute to a website’s authority and help improve its search engine rankings.
- Websites often use do-follow links when they want to endorse or vouch for the content they are linking to.
- Definition: No-follow links are hyperlinks that include the “nofollow” HTML attribute in their code. This attribute instructs search engine crawlers not to follow the link and not to pass on any link equity to the linked page.
- Attributes: No-follow links are indicated in HTML with the
rel="nofollow"attribute within the anchor tag
- Use Cases:
- No-follow links are commonly used in user-generated content like blog comments, forum posts, and social media profiles to deter spam and prevent the flow of link equity to potentially low-quality or untrusted websites.
- They are also used for advertising links and sponsored content to comply with search engine guidelines and avoid penalization for paid links.
- Websites may use no-follow links when linking to untrusted or unverified sources, or when they want to provide additional context but not pass on SEO value.
- Link Building Strategies: In SEO, building a mix of both do-follow and no-follow links is considered a well-rounded strategy. Do-follow links contribute to a site’s SEO authority, while no-follow links can still drive traffic, provide context, and maintain a natural link profile.
- Search Engine Guidelines: Search engines like Google provide guidelines for proper use of no-follow links, such as using them for sponsored content, user-generated content, and untrusted sources. Following these guidelines can help websites avoid penalties.
- SEO Impact: While do-follow links directly affect a website’s SEO rankings, no-follow links may indirectly benefit a site by driving traffic, building brand awareness, and enhancing user experience.
Understanding the difference between do-follow and no-follow links is essential for website owners, bloggers, and SEO professionals to craft effective link-building strategies, maintain search engine compliance, and optimize their online presence.
To find do-follow and no-follow links on a website, you can use various online tools and browser extensions. Here’s a step-by-step guide:
Method 1: Using Browser Inspect Tool
- Open the Website: Visit the website for which you want to find do-follow and no-follow links using your web browser.
- Right-Click on a Link: Right-click on a link (anchor text) on the webpage that you want to inspect.
- Select “Inspect”: In the context menu that appears, select “Inspect” or “Inspect Element.” This will open the browser’s developer tools.
- Locate the HTML Code: The developer tools will open with the HTML code of the webpage displayed. Look for the anchor tag
<a>that corresponds to the link you right-clicked on.
- Check for the “rel” Attribute: Within the anchor tag, check for the “rel” attribute. If the “rel” attribute contains “nofollow,” it’s a no-follow link. If it doesn’t contain “nofollow,” it’s a do-follow link.
- Repeat as Needed: You can repeat these steps for other links on the webpage to identify whether they are do-follow or no-follow.
Method 2: Using Browser Extensions
You can also use browser extensions that make it easier to identify do-follow and no-follow links. Here are extensions for popular browsers:
- For Google Chrome: “NoFollow Simple” and “Check My Links” are extensions that can highlight no-follow links on a webpage.
- For Mozilla Firefox: “NoFollow” is an extension that helps you identify no-follow links.
- For Safari: “NoFollow for Safari” is an extension that can highlight no-follow links.
Simply install the extension for your browser, visit the website you want to analyze, and activate the extension. It will highlight do-follow and no-follow links on the webpage.
Method 3: Online Tools
There are various online tools available that can analyze an entire website and provide a list of do-follow and no-follow links. Some popular tools include Ahrefs, Moz, and SEMrush. Here’s how you can use such a tool:
- Go to the tool’s website.
- Enter the URL of the website you want to analyze.
- Run the analysis, and the tool will generate a report that includes information about do-follow and no-follow links on the website.
Using any of these methods, you can easily identify whether a link on a website is do-follow or no-follow. Keep in mind that this information can be useful for SEO and link-building strategies.