Within any website the links are an element that brings dynamism to the experience of navigating through the different sections that make it up allowing us to go from one content to another quickly.
However, it is necessary to take into account that Google, as well as other search engines will consider these links depending on how they are configured by classifying them into nofollow links and dofollow links from which you will then learn what they mean and when to use them.
What is the difference between a nofollow link and a dofollow link?
A nofollow link refers to an attribute content within the HTML code of the link that serves as a markup to indicate to the search engine that URL is not considered when indexing the pages that make up your website.
This means that all those links on your website that contain the nofollow attribute will not be linked to the destination web page and will be configured as follows:
On the other hand, a dofollow link is one that is implicitly attributed to the URL when it does not have the nofollow attribute, telling the search engine to take it into account during the indexing of the website.
When to use nofollow links?
When determining the authority of a website the search engine takes into account two factors:
- The number of links that go to and from your website.
- Quality of the page to which your website is linked.
But there are situations in which it is necessary that some of these links are omitted by the search engine turning them into nofollow links, which should be done in the following cases:
Links in comments
This is a privilege that many users tend to abuse and that some can also do in a malicious way to damage the authority of your site by publishing a link that leads to a low-authority website or that has nothing to do with the content of your site.
It is for this reason that WordPress by default attributes the quality of nofollow to the links placed in the posts' comments.
Links to harmful websites
It is possible that at some point your site was associated with a URL whose authority you initially considered beneficial to boost the relevance of your website but over time it became involved in a scam or was a victim of hacking making you no longer want to have any link to that URL.
A nofollow link allows this type of URL to go unnoticed by the search engine even if users continue to access it from your page which will give you time to remove all the URLs from your website that lead to the harmful site.
Change of topic
If at any time you decide to make a publication whose content is outside the thematic line usually developed on your website is likely to generate links to related content from different websites.
This could cause Google to contrast this publication with the rest of the content on your website and consider it as a result of a blackhat linkbuilding practice, causing your website to be penalized for it.
In this sense, it is appropriate to define a meta-label nofollow link placed in the header of the page so that this quality is applied to all links published either by you or by users in the post.
When you include sponsored links on your website this action is a very effective way to generate income on your blog but it is necessary that these are limited into your website when the search engine algorithm performs the exploration of all the URLs that make up your site.
This is because the site associated with the sponsored link is paying you to receive referred traffic from the visits generated on your website, not from the link juice coming from the authority of your page.
For this reason it is appropriate to configure these URLs as nofollow links applying this measure also for affiliate links.
How to configure nofollow links?
Setting up a nofollow link is a very easy task to do because no matter which web design tool you use, it will provide you with an HTML editing option so that you can adjust the code comprising the URL of the post or entry you are creating in which you will be able to activate this attribute.
In the case of the WordPress editor this has a tab in the editing window called HTML (Gutenberg) or Text (for the classic editor) can have the same presentation in other CMS as Drupal or Joomla.
Once you are there, all you have to do is place the label where the code corresponding to the URL of the page is found and within it add the attribute
and that will be enough for Google to omit that link when it indexes the pages of your website.
Another way to configure nofollow links is through the use of tools or plugins where, in the case of WordPress, you can find the Ultimate Nofollow plugin as one of the easiest to use.
Just install it and an option will be added to the configuration section of the post or entry you are creating as a checkbox that, when checked, will automatically convert the URL of the post or entry into a nofollow link.
When to use dofollow links?
As mentioned above a dofollow link acquires this condition by default, being this the way most of your URLs should be configured to serve as a route for the search engine algorithm to explore your website making a recognition of all content that conforms it and generate a map of it.
Regarding the management of internal and external dofollow links within a website, Google gives priority to this aspect at the time of determining the authority of a page, as this is a sample of how important is the way the content of a website relates to each other and other pages.