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December 13, 2010

What is a Non Follow Link?

Two months ago I was struggling to index one of my new video sites; the more quality links I put to my site, the more I went down in the Google rankings. It was the first time I experienced the hammer of Google.

I am a website builder not a SEO expert. All my knowledge about SEO comes from eBooks’ and tips from experts. Several of them always told me that “No Follow Links” didn’t had any effect in the Google algorithm. Almost all my SEO efforts were always concentrated in getting Do Follow Links.

To my bad luck, I was so wrong!

First let’s define what is a non follow link. In a very basic and simple way, is an HTML attribute that tells the search engines that one particular link shouldn’t influence the website rankings of help with his indexing.

During my ranking battle with Google, I read a very exciting E Book from Josip Barbaric. He was the light in my path. His approach on No Follow Link was very different. To him No follow Links were essential for a good Google ranking. The logic is very easy to understand.

The Google algorithm takes links as a vote of trust from the users. If the quality of the links is good, Google increase his trust in your site. But you must be very careful in how you get those links. If you practice the conventional SEO strategies your goal is getting links, links and more links, but Google don’t only evaluate the number of links. They also evaluate how you get those links.

When a website doesn’t uses SEO techniques but has a good Google ranking, the quality of the content is the key. Visitors find this content relevant to their search and from time to time they link or trust in the website making a recommendation or review via social bookmarking, social media, web 2.0, etc. Almost all this social sites uses non follow links and the visitors establish the links in a natural and organic way.

Blog owners could use the site content because is good and webmasters establish links to the site because of its quality. This visitors and users don’t see if they are establishing a non follow or a do follow link. They only recommend the site using their preferred method. If you think with this kind of logic then you can understand the Google algorithm.

You must establish a good number of do follow links to your site, but you have to consider to establish non follow links too and this link placement must be organic. Never establish 100 links (do follow or non follow) in one week and then nothing for the other week. Google is going to punish you.

In my experience, the best way to establish non follow links is using social media and bookmarking sites. I personally recommend social marker since you can establish a nice number of links in minutes. Almost all the sites that are listed in social marker (approximately 60%) have the non follow attribute. After my video money making site got several non follow links the Google rankings were better. I conclude that you most consider the placement of non follow links in your SEO strategy as an essential part of your success.

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