Outbound Links and SEO, Clarified

Links | Linking to WordPress plugin and theme resources

As you probably know, SEO is tricky. Google doesn’t publish its algorithm (for great reasons), and so SEO has a “guess what’s in the black box” character that’s relatively rare in the world of technology—as opposed to the world of, say, medieval medicine.

We work with an outstanding SEO consultant (name on request), and we got into a worried conversation with her about whether we should be nofollowing the links at the bottom of Link posts like this one. Was the WPShout homepage bleeding PageRank because it links out to lots of other great websites? None of us, including her, knew the answer.

As it turns out, it’s fine. She found us the linked article, which goes into gorgeous detail on working with outbound links. The most important finding for our purposes is summed up in the following:

A naïve reading of the algorithm suggests that you shouldn’t link to anybody else, ever. It turns out that’s not at all true.

So outbound links are fine, and actually important—they just need to be done properly. Enjoy the article, and happy linking!

Image credit: Yandle

1 Response


  • SEO guy says:

    Yeah, I thought, too, that outgoing links are bad for SEO efforts, but as I read more about subject, I concluded that this was true before 2009 – that is when Google changed their strategy and updated algorithm. Nowadays it’s better for SEO to have links pointing to trustworthy websites.

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