10 Internal Linking Mistakes That Harm Your Website SEO (2023)

Creating links is super easy, did you know there are plenty of internal linking mistakes you can easily make that will hurt your site user experience and rankings?

10 Internal Linking Mistakes That Harm Your Website SEO (1)

Photo by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi:Pexels

Internal linking is an essential part of a website’s SEO strategy, but if you’re doing it the wrong way you can hurt your overall rankings. In this post, we’ll cover some of the most common mistakes people make when they do internal linking and how these mistakes can be avoided.

Internal linking is something that is neglected by many SEO experts as they keep external linking on priority to claim a good position on search engines. Creating backlinks is very important for website ranking, but internal links are also important for your overall search engine ranking.

Why is Internal Linking Important for Website SEO

Internal links areimportant for local SEObecause these links help search engines understand the content of your blog. Search engines use internal links to determine how users navigate, which in turn affects their rankings in the SERP.

A website that has awell-designed page hierarchyand clearly labeled headings will have an easier time ranking for certain keywords because it’ll be easier for search engines to determine what each page is about.

How to Improve Your Site’s Indexability with an Optimized Silo Link Structure

Internal Linking Mistake that You Should Avoid

1. Linking to Spammy Websites

The best way to avoid spammy links is to avoid them. If you want to stay away from shady sites and the people who post them, take the time to find out what your competitors are doing on the web.

(Video) The Power of Internal Linking: Boost Your Website's SEO with These Proven Strategies

You can do this by checking out their backlinks and looking at how they’re ranking in search engines.

If you see a lot of spammy links being posted by your competitor’s websites, then it’s likely that those sites have been penalized for posting these types of links on their own site or within forums where other people share content.

This means that if anyone follows those links from one domain directly into another domain with no other context around them (like an image), Google may consider it as a low-quality article which will lower its rankings over time as more quality content gets added underneath each piece of text when users scroll through pages deeper into search results pages.”

2. Using the Same Keywords Repeatedly

Use the same keyword repeatedly:This is acommon mistakethat can cause major issues for your website’s SEO.

The most obvious mistake is to use the same keyword on all of your pages, including the page title and body text.

This will help you rank for that keyword, but it may also lead people who are looking for other related terms to think that there’s something wrong with your site when they find one of these repeated keywords on their own search results page.

3. Adding the Many Internal Links on Your Page

It’s a good thing to have links on your pages. Links help search engines understand what you have written about, and they also help readers find their way around the site.

However, there is a limit to how many internal links you can add on one page before it becomes too much information for the reader to process.

Too many internal links can be confusing and distracting for visitors who are looking at your site while they’re trying to find something specific or useful in general terms (such as “how do I get my business listed on Google?”).

They will probably leave without finding what they were looking for because they didn’t understand how everything fit together well enough!

(Video) Internal Linking Strategy: How to Set it Up

It’s important not only that each piece of content has its own unique link but also that those links are relevant enough, so users don’t feel like clicking through too much spammy nonsense just because someone thought it was cool.

4. Duplicate Content and Internal Linking

Duplicate content is bad for SEO. Search engines use the unique content on your site to rank it higher in their search results, so having duplicate content can be detrimental to your website’s rankings.

Duplicate internal linking also harms your site’s SEO because it makes it harder for search engines and users alike to find the information you want them to find.

Ifduplicate internal linksexist between two pages within a website, then those pages won’t be able to exchange information as effectively as they could if they were linked only once.

How to Use Google Search Console to Optimize Internal Links

In addition, having too many small internal links can slow down page loads significantly—which means less time spent reading and more time wasted waiting around on pages that aren’t loading properly.

5. Avoiding Long-Tail Keywords in Your Anchor Text

Long-tail keywords are more specific than broad keywords.

These keywords are searched for less often, but these keywords convert better because they’re easier to rank for in the SERPs and they tend to be more “brandable” than broad terms like “best laptops.”

Long-tail keywords are also more likely to attract links from other websites, so it’s important that you use them consistently throughout your content creation process.

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6. Using Links to Lead People Off of Your Site

Another common mistake is to use links to lead people off your site. Don’t do it! It will hurt your SEO, and it’s a bad idea for several reasons.

Internal linking is vital for your SEO, but if you’re doing it wrong you can hurt your overall rankings, so make sure you’re doing it right!

Internal linking is an important part of yourlocal SEO strategy, but if you’re doing it wrong, it can hurt your overall rankings. So, make sure you’re doing it right!

7. Redirect Chains and Loops

The redirects are the events that take you from one page to another. Redirects can create loops and slow down your website, and sometimes even confuse search engines.

Direct links to destination pages improve user experience and can be set manually if required.

8. Using Nofollow in Outgoing Internal Links

If you need to redirect, do it directly to the final page. Understanding the reason behind redirect issues will help you to identify the patterns and fix them.

When you add a nofollow link to your blog or website, it tells search engines not to follow that link.

it’s important to use the correct tags when doing so. The most common mistake is using the nofollow tag on internal links and forgetting that those are passed along without the designation.

If you do use the nofollow tag on internal links, be sure to review your site and remove any links that don’t need it.

Top Internal Linking FAQ

What is the difference between Internal Linking & External Linking

Internal links are one of the most important aspects of SEO. If you have a page on your site which is not very popular, then it is important to increase the number of internal links which could help that page to be ranked at the top by Google.

(Video) Is Internal Linking Getting More Important for SEO?

An external link is a link sent from one web page or website to another internet page that lets people know who published or connected with each other online.

Is internal linking only useful for SEO purposes?

Internal links are useful for SEO purposes by allowing users to link to multiple pages on a website and improve the search engine ranking of these linking sites.

The correct number of internal links will depend on many factors, such as whether one site is linked with another site frequently if there are only a few pages within the website, and how often they change.

How many internal links should a page have?

The number of links a page has is important. The more links a page has, the more authority it has and the more likely it is that people will find it useful.

It is also good for your site’s search engine rankings because it makes the site easier for search engines to crawl through, and the more crawling that occurs the better chance you have of being found via search engines’ natural language queries.

We typically recommend that most pages have between 10-15 internal links.

Should internal links open in a new window?

Internal links open in a new window should be set because it causes confusion for users when they come across a product page and open many internal links all at once.

The links will then show up as broken links and cause the user to leave your site, wasting their time and making them less likely to buy from you again.


Internal links are vital for your SEO, but if you’re doing it wrong you can hurt your overall rankings. Make sure you’re doing it right!


10 Internal Linking Mistakes That Harm Your Website SEO? ›

Moreover, they allow search engines to find out what content on your site is related and determine its value. The more links a significant page receives, the more important it will seem to search engines. Therefore, good internal links are crucial to your SEO.

Can internal links hurt SEO? ›

Moreover, they allow search engines to find out what content on your site is related and determine its value. The more links a significant page receives, the more important it will seem to search engines. Therefore, good internal links are crucial to your SEO.

What is one internal linking mistake likely to harm one's SEO strategy How can this mistake be fixed? ›

Overlooking Orphaned Pages

There's no way a user or search bot can get to those pages, so it is the silliest internal linking mistake one can make. If you have many orphaned pages on your site, it can be harmful to your SEO efforts. So make sure to audit your site for pages with no internal links.

Do internal links matter for SEO? ›

Why Are Internal Links Important for SEO? Internal links help Google find, index and understand all of the pages on your site. If you use them strategically, internal links can send page authority (also known as PageRank) to important pages.

How many internal links are good for SEO? ›

every long form piece of content and all important pages should have around 3-4 internal links pointing out to other pages, with an additional link per 300 words or so.

What are the 3 types of internal links? ›

There are four types of internal links you need to know of: contextual links, navigational links, footer links, and image links.

What is toxic link in SEO? ›

A “toxic” link is generally considered to be a link that has the potential to harm your website's ability to rank. However, not all SEOs are aligned on how to define toxic links and whether their presence actually could hurt your ability to rank.

What are the 7 common enterprise SEO reporting mistakes to avoid? ›

By dodging these SEO errors, you'll be able to create content that's both engaging and easily discoverable.
  • Neglecting Keyword Research. ...
  • Not Optimizing Headings & Titles. ...
  • Ignoring Meta Descriptions. ...
  • Ignoring Search Intent. ...
  • Overusing Keywords. ...
  • Failing To Provide Quality Content. ...
  • Disregarding Image Optimization.
Mar 23, 2023

What are SEO mistakes? ›

Content can improve inbound traffic, help grow your backlinks, lead to better social media shares, and more! Thin content, low-value content, scraped/stolen content, and automatically generated content are all big SEO mistakes to avoid! These can lead to a thin content penalty from Google.

How do I optimize internal links? ›

Best Internal Linking Practices You Can Follow in 2023
  1. Create Lots of Content. ...
  2. Link High Authority Pages to New for Improved Rankings. ...
  3. Use Anchor Text That You Want to Rank For. ...
  4. Link Deep. ...
  5. Ensure that Links are Contextual. ...
  6. Use Relevant Links for Internal Linking. ...
  7. Be Reasonable With the Number of Internal Links Used.
Mar 18, 2023

Can you have too many internal links? ›

If a page has too many links, they may not follow all of them. Search engine crawlers may follow some of the page's links while ignoring others. If search engine crawlers don't follow a link to a page, they may fail to index that page.

What is an example of an internal link? ›

What's an internal link? An internal link is a link from one page to another page on the same domain. They're simply text hyperlinks from one page to another page on your website. Of course, your website navigation is an example of internal linking, but here we're talking about links on the page, in the content.

How much do broken links affect SEO? ›

Broken links can destroy your conversion rates. Broken links indirectly harm SEO by affecting bounce rate, time on site, and how you pass link juice. Broken links may also directly harm SEO rankings by sending signals that your website is old and outdated.

Is having too many pages bad for SEO? ›

Adding pages isn't a bad thing for SEO—in fact, it's a good thing in most cases, and there isn't such a thing as “too many pages.” Problems arise when you start to add pages for no other reason than to increase your rank. In those situations, you're liable to do more harm than good to your overall domain authority.

Do buttons count as internal links? ›

Every internal link belongs to one of the two big camps: navigational and contextual. Links within your header, footer, sidebars, breadcrumbs, and buttons are navigational—their main goal is to help website visitors move around.

How many internal links are best? ›

Pro tip: Aim to point to at least two or three internal links to every new piece of content. These should come from an authority page plus those within the relevant topic cluster.

Are backlinks and internal links the same? ›

What is the difference between backlinks and internal links? Backlinks are links from other websites that point to your site. Internal links are links that point from one page on your site to another. Both have SEO value, but backlinks are usually harder to get and, therefore, considered more valuable.

What are bad backlinks? ›

A bad backlink is a link that comes from a not-so trusted website. Since the Penguin algorithm change in 2012, Google has been cracking down on bad links. Before Google launched the Penguin algorithm, websites were violating Google Webmaster Guidelines with black hat SEO.

What kind of links harm your rankings? ›

Backlinks - The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly

On the other end of the spectrum, links from side with low authority, or 'spammy' sites, may not help your rank. Toxic backlinks may not only harm your rank, but could also lead to penalties from search engines.

Are too many backlinks bad? ›

Too Many Backlinks Can Be Problematic

However, through our research, we have discovered that Google wants to see quality over quantity and if there are too many links built in an unnatural way Google will catch you and penalize your site.

What are the biggest SEO fails? ›

Here are 10 of the worst SEO mistakes even the old masters can still make.
  • Presenting a Poor Internal Link Structure. ...
  • Creating Content for Content's Sake. ...
  • Not Investing in Link-Worthy Content. ...
  • Failing to Reach Customers with Your Content. ...
  • Optimizing for the Wrong Keywords. ...
  • Not Consulting Paid Media. ...
  • Forgetting About Local.
Oct 8, 2021

What are the top 10 mistakes managers make? ›

10 Common Leadership and Management Mistakes
  1. Not Providing Feedback. ...
  2. Not Making Time for Your Team. ...
  3. Being Too "Hands-Off" ...
  4. Being Too Friendly. ...
  5. Failing to Define Goals. ...
  6. Misunderstanding Motivation. ...
  7. Hurrying Recruitment. ...
  8. Not "Walking the Walk"

What is the biggest SEO challenge? ›

According to research by Search Engine journal 32.9% of SEOs cite lack or resources as the number one challenge they face.

What are unethical SEO techniques called? ›

Black hat SEO is a practice against search engine guidelines, used to get a site ranking higher in search results. These unethical tactics don't solve for the searcher and often end in a penalty from search engines. Black hat techniques include keyword stuffing, cloaking, and using private link networks.

What is unethical SEO? ›

Unethical SEO Practices

Making use of automated queries without the permission from search engines. A method of “cloaking” is used whereby content is submitted to search engines in such a way that some text is not clearly obvious or apparent to a targeted audience.

What are negative SEO strategies? ›

Types of Negative SEO Attacks
  • Hacking a Website. ...
  • Creating Toxic Backlinks with Spammy Anchor Texts Pointing to the Website. ...
  • Scraping a Website's Content and Creating Duplicates of the Website. ...
  • Posting Fake Negative Reviews About the Website. ...
  • Removing a Website's Backlinks by Sending out Fake Removal Requests to Webmasters.
Aug 20, 2020

What is the most common SEO failure during a web release? ›

One of the most frequent SEO errors is not checking if Google indexes pages.

Why do people fail at SEO? ›

One of the many reasons startups fail at SEO is the use of the wrong keywords. Choosing the best keywords can be an exhausting job especially if you don't know that much about SEO or you are in a highly popular niche. Use a keyword research tool for suggestions. Be careful whether you chose short or long tail keywords.

What makes SEO difficult? ›

One of the things about learning SEO that can be challenging is the amount of information you need to read and process. You need to become familiar with powerful tools like Google Analytics, SEMRush, and Moz, which involves a lot of reading and practice.

How do I check internal linking? ›

Use the internal link analyzer tool to analyze the links search engine spiders can detect on a specific page of your website. Search engines, spider links to index and determine the structure of a website and the relation between pages. The link analyzer tool checks: The Total number of links found on your page.

What are internal backlinks? ›

Internal backlinks connect one post or page to another. This can be done by linking textual or image content as the connecting source. Creating hyperlinks via words is more common than using images because it flows more naturally within the context of an article.

How many links per day is safe? ›

How Many Links Per Day Is Safe? You can safely build 1 link or even 500 links per day. There is no limit to how many links you can build so long as you follow the rules.

How many internal links per 1,000 words? ›

Less is more, especially when it comes to an effective link-building strategy. If you add multiple links within each paragraph of a blog post, you have definitely gone overboard. Try and stick to three to five inbound and outbound links per 1000 words.

What is the maximum number of internal links per page? ›

The real question we should be asking ourselves at this point is “is the number of internal links per page still a relevant metric we need to worry about?” From a purely technical standpoint, according to this help article on Moz.com, search engines have approximately a crawl limit of 150 links per page.

What is the difference between internal linking and internal linking? ›

Internal linking is when a site links to URLs located on the same domain, whereas external linking is when a site links to URLs located on other domains.

What is the difference between hyperlink and internal link? ›

Internal links are hyperlinks on one page of your site that direct the reader to a target page on your site, whereas an external link is a hyperlink that directs the reader to a reputable page on a different website.

What are the two types of linking internal linking and linking? ›

Very simply, internal linking occurs when a site links to other URLs on the same site, whereas external linking occurs when a site links to URLs on a different site. Put another way, internal links are when you link to your own pages, while external links point to pages on other domains.

Do toxic backlinks hurt SEO? ›

Toxic backlinks are links that don't come from high-quality, trusted authority sites. As a result, they can and will hurt your SEO if there are enough of them, so it's essential to know how to spot them and understand what to do if you find you have them.

Does redesigning a website hurt SEO? ›

How much do website redesigns affect SEO? Website redesigns can have a big impact on SEO. When done well, the improved UX can boost rankings, but if the redirects aren't carefully mapped, it can lower your authority and result in your website losing a lot of organic traffic.

Does clicking on links improve SEO? ›

External linking improves your SEO.

The external links you add can assist search engines in determining the usefulness and quality of your pages. High-quality pages usually link to other high-quality pages; thus, search engines will look at your content favorably, helping you rank higher.

Which SEO should be avoided? ›

Spinning Content

Let's start out this one by saying, please don't. Content “spinning” is a straight-up bad SEO tactic. It involves copying ideas and structures from other websites, and then rewording parts of the content to avoid direct plagiarism. This can even involve using artificial intelligence to tweak content.

How many keywords is too many SEO? ›

How many keywords are too many? The ideal keyword density preferred by both readers and search engines is around two to five percent. Even in longer pieces, the best practice is not to exceed 20 uses per webpage.

How many keywords are too much for SEO? ›

It's easier for pages to rank if they focus on one topic, so you should focus on two or three primary keywords per page that are reworded variations. Targeting four or more keywords is difficult because there is limited space in the title and meta description tags to target them.

Do links from emails help SEO? ›

Although link building is one of the most essential parts of off-page SEO, email marketing can help with it too. SEO helps you reach the top of the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). This, in turn, can give added visibility to your brand and help establish you as an authority in the industry.

What is the best page URL length for SEO? ›

The appropriate page URL is 75 characters long. As for indexing documents with long URLs (over 75-120 characters), they are generally indexed quite well, although there may be difficulties in the ranking. Here you can check the maximum limits of URL length in different browsers.

How many internal links for SEO? ›

every long form piece of content and all important pages should have around 3-4 internal links pointing out to other pages, with an additional link per 300 words or so.

Do internal links count as backlinks? ›

No, internal links stay within your website domain, they do not come from an external source. Backlinks are external links that point to your domain.

Do external links improve SEO? ›

External linking improves your SEO.

The external links you add can assist search engines in determining the usefulness and quality of your pages. High-quality pages usually link to other high-quality pages; thus, search engines will look at your content favorably, helping you rank higher.

Are empty links bad for SEO? ›

Yes, it is harmful for the SEO. Sometimes these methods are also called as “cloaking” where webmasters show content to users which are different than the search engine bots. In your case, bots can crawl to these URLs with empty anchor texts, but users won't find it out.

Are external links bad for SEO? ›

Yes! Outbound links are a great way to improve your SEO and provide value to your readers. Just be sure to use them sparingly in each piece of content and choose quality over quantity.

How many internal links is too many? ›

Google's Link Limit

In the past, Google reportedly said that pages should have fewer than 100 links. It didn't force webmasters to follow this link limit. Rather, Google's guidelines stated that webmasters should use a reasonable number of links per page, with fewer than 100 links being the recommended limit.

What is the best way to track internal links? ›

Track Internal Links in Google Tag Manager and Google Analytics
  1. Track Internal Link Clicks from an Anchor Tag.
  2. Go to Google Tag Manager.
  3. Make a Google Tag Manager Event.
  4. Debug and See if the Tag is Working.
  5. Go to Google Analytics and See the Anchor Tag Events.

Which type of link carries the most value for SEO? ›

A dofollow link is the most valuable type of link as it passes SEO value and authority to the site it leads to. Dofollow links are active hyperlinks with anchor text (the text that is hyperlinked) that is typically related to the name or topic of the campaign's content or publisher.

What should I avoid with SEO content? ›

Here are some of the most common SEO mistakes to avoid:
  • Not using Google Analytics data. ...
  • Having the Google Analytics tracking code set-up wrong. ...
  • Generic or naked anchor text. ...
  • Little or no content (or duplicate content) ...
  • Keyword stuffed content. ...
  • Keyword stuffed title tags. ...
  • Duplicate or default title tags.

What should I avoid with SEO? ›

Common SEO Mistakes
  • Slow Site Speed. ...
  • Bad Reviews on Google. ...
  • Faulty Google My Business Verification Code. ...
  • Lack of Location-Specific Pages. ...
  • Duplicate Content. ...
  • Broken Images and Missing Alternative Texts. ...
  • Outdated Content and Information on Site. ...
  • Not Optimizing Your Website for Mobile.
Feb 23, 2023

Why shouldn't you change a URL for SEO? ›

Does changing a URL impact SEO? Quick Answer: Yes, it does. The effect of doing so can be severe, as it makes your site more susceptible to issues like 404 errors, broken links, and lost links — all of which negatively impact your SEO.

Do inbound links make a big difference to SEO? ›

Inbound links, also known as backlinks, occur when another website links back to your site. Google views inbound links as an indicator that your site has high-quality content, making these links one of the most important elements in search engine optimization (SEO).

How many external links should a website have? ›

Many industry experts, however, advise against linking more than once to the same page. Based on what we've found from our own research, we recommend 1-2 external links for every 500 words of content.


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