No need to explain why internal linking is one the essential part of website SEO, so let’s go straight to the matter.
Internal linking best practices:
- clear website structure and navigation
- don’t put that block of links to footer. This hello from the past which was an inalienable part of every real estate website few years ago now brings no value to customers as they are irrelevnt to page’s content. And therefore search engines may account this links as spam and penalize your site for them
- make use of tags, cats, author archives and custom taxonomies to link all parts of your website together
- place most important (and valueable for SEO) links on frontpage
- add contextual links to post content manually while writing (see example 4 lines above)
- use internal linking wordpress plugin to find related posts automatically. My choice is YARPP.
- when you’ve done all points use creative approach to internal linking strategy
- but mind to keep single page’s external links to reasonable number (google doesn’t give exact number, but one should understand it depends on your website type and content, 200 external links on the news website is not the same as on you’re company’s blog ).
Let’s see the internal linking example
- For posts navigation we used: wordpress tags and related posts plugin.
- For books navigation we used custom taxonomies: book author, year, publisher and series.
- To connect books and posts we decided to add relationship custom field for posts where editor can choose book related to the topic of the post (this feature would be even more convinient in future when post author can add book related to the topic of his article himself before publishing). It’s usefull ot for SEO only but for user too as he reads article for example on how become an early bird and the same time the book on time-management is shown to him so he can go deeper if he wants.
- To connect posts to books (vice versa) we used the same approach with Advanced Custom Fields (one of the most usefull plugons ever).
Provide user-focused approach to adding value and information. Not only links but every action you take on your website should be measured from this key point — maximize value to reader. Make your internal links relevant and reasonable to help visitor seamlessly navigate through your website in natural manner.
In case you ran out of ideas, take a drink or two to boost your creativety. Different researches come to conclusion that certain portions of alcohol helps us think outside of the box. So now you know what to do with your internal linking)