The nofollow attribute is a directive that can be added to a link’s HTML code to tell search engines not to follow the link or pass any link equity, which is commonly used to prevent the transfer of PageRank from one page to another.
This attribute is often used to avoid potential issues with search engine guidelines, such as when linking to untrusted content or paid links.
How Nofollow Works
When you add the “nofollow” attribute to a link, you’re essentially instructing search engines like Google not to consider this link when ranking websites.
This can be useful in situations where you don’t want to endorse a specific page or site, or when the link is part of a paid advertisement or sponsored content.
Here’s an example of how the “nofollow” attribute can be added to a link’s HTML code:
<a href="https://www.example.com/" rel="nofollow">Example Link</a>
The “rel” attribute in the code above contains the value “nofollow,” which communicates to search engines that they should not follow the link or pass any link equity through it.
When to Use Nofollow
Some common scenarios where using the “nofollow” attribute might be beneficial include:
- Paid links: If you have paid links on your website, adding a “nofollow” attribute can prevent search engines from penalizing you for buying or selling links.
- User-generated content: When your website allows users to post comments or other content containing links, applying “nofollow” to those links can help prevent potential spam issues and protect your site’s reputation.
- Untrusted content: If you’re linking to a website or page that you don’t trust or want to endorse, using the “nofollow” attribute can help avoid passing link equity to those sites.
It’s important to note that Google has introduced additional link attributes, such as “sponsored” and “ugc” (User Generated Content), which provide more granular control over link relationships.
You can learn more about these attributes in Google’s official documentation here.