What is Link Equity, Link Juice or Link Authority: Calculation & Strategies

link equity

When it comes to developing backlinks or simply building better internal links.

You’ll want to work smarter and not harder.

So, we need to think about link equity, link juice, backlink liquor, or whatever you want to call it.

Whatever you call it, you’ll need to be able to respond to the following:

How does link equity work now that the algorithm has been updated, and how can you use it to boost your rankings?

We’ll go over the basics of link equity, a list of typical troubles your site might be having, and an actionable list to ensure you’re ready for all that link juice in this piece.

In SEO, what is link equity?

When one page links to another, link equity or “link juice” is the idea that reputation/authority is transferred along, therefore sharing some of the SEO value between pages. To simplify:

SEOs use this function to execute link building, which is linking high authority, contextual links from trusted, established websites to improve a site’s reputation by generating a diverse yet relevant backlink profile.

Link equity is passed through both internal and external links. Backlink quality is frequently assessed using link-building indicators such as subject relevancy, anchor text, and page strength. In addition, links and an unknown number of other ranking factors determine Google’s search engine rankings.

PageRank and link equity

Many people think about PageRank when they think of link equity. This is because PageRank was Google’s first algorithmic formula for determining how a site should rank, and it was based mainly on the backlink profile of that site. However, PageRank is no longer the most important component in determining a site’s ranking; it’s now just one of the hundreds of ranking criteria considered by Google, and its significance has dwindled.

Link equity can be thought of as the movement of a page’s ranking power from one link to the next. For example, when a highly authoritative page includes a followed link to a lesser site’s article, it might be seen as a vote of confidence for the linked page, transferring authority via the followed link.

You may have heard of “PageRank sculpting,” an out-of-date SEO technique in which a site owner carefully decides which links are followed and which are not to manage the flow of authority from page to page. While this can still be helpful in the right circumstances, we would never recommend misusing nofollows. Instead, concentrate on enhancing your information architecture and developing a solid ranking strategy.

What is link juice, and how does it work?

PageRank (PR) was Google’s original algorithm for sorting search results. It ranks pages based on the amount and quality of links to each page and is named after one of Google’s founders, Larry Page.

The theory goes that web pages with more links are more likely to be important. This is because when you link to another page, some of your page’s reputation or link juice is transferred to the linked page.

Google continues to take links into account today, in addition to other algorithms that examine various factors. To rank a page it’s not as simple as spamming links to it. There are a lot of different signals that can be much more powerful. However, link equity still exists because links are the most important factor in deciding reputation.

Each page has its reputation, and Google has repeatedly said no domain authority metric is used. As a result, it’s critical to have internal connections that direct Googlebot and people to different portions of your site.

The homepage obtains the most external links and will appear as the first result in a branded search. You can transfer some of your page’s reputation to other pages on your site by linking your pages together.

How is link equity calculated?

Keeping in mind that both internal and external links convey link equity is important. Here’s a checklist to help you figure out how much a link connection is worth:

Is it significant? 

Search algorithms seek out content relevant to what people are seeking.

Is it trustworthy?

Search engines prioritize the most trustworthy sources.

Is it a FOLLOW reference? 

Google will not identify your site with the linking page if you use nofollow links.

Is it possible to crawl through it?

It won’t pass value if Google can’t crawl it.

Is it in a good location? 

Google uses site architecture to decide which material is most valuable to visitors. So, for example, footer links aren’t always as useful as links in the body.

Is this one of the selected few?

If a link is lost in a sea of links, it’s likely to lose value.

Is the status code correct? 

Through 200s, 301s, and 302s, Google passes link value.

Link equity assessment

Assuming any of the companies’ figures, determining the number of follow links leading to other sites is critical. 

  • 100% of the link equity: one follow link is provided to only one site
  • 10% of the link equity: one follow link is provided to 10 sites
  • 1% of the link equity: one follow link is provided to 100 sites
  • 10% of 1% of the link equity: one follow link is provided to 1000 sites
  • 1% of 1% of the link equity: one follow link is provided to 10,000 sites
  • 10% of 1% of 1% of the link equity: one follow link is provided to 100,000 sites

Failure to calculate the amount of outbound follow backlinks from a target site wastes resources and delays one of the most important components of site performance improvement.

Link equity principles

So, before we get into some examples, let’s go over basic link equity ideas.

External links have a higher ranking value and can potentially increase your ranking than internal links.

That isn’t to suggest that internal links don’t generate link equity; many pages with few or no external connections can still rank well if the domain is widely connected to and the page is on that site with links from other good, essential pages on the domain. However, it is exceedingly difficult to rank if a page is orphaned or if a domain has no links.

Internal and external pages that are well-connected pass more link equity than poorly linked ones.

To those of us who have studied PageRank over the years, I believe this makes obvious sense. If a website has a lot of links, especially from other important pages, it has a better chance of passing on its link equity to other pages and giving them a ranking boost than if the page is poorly linked to or not linked at all.

Sites with fewer links tend to give their targets more equity than pages with more links.

Using the previous PageRank paradigm, if you have a page with hundreds or thousands of links, each of those links receives a considerably smaller proportion of the link equity that may be transmitted to it than if you have a page with only a few links.

This isn’t universally applicable… well, let’s say it doesn’t scale flawlessly.

So it’s not true that if you reduce your high-link-earning pages to just one link pointing to this specific page on your site, you’ll suddenly see a huge increase in benefit compared to if you keep your normal navigation on that page and link to your homepage, About page, and Products page.

That isn’t the case at all.

However, you’ll get more equity and rank-boosting power if you take a page with hundreds of links in a row and replace them with a few links to the most significant, most useful destinations.

Tricks and hacks like “nofollow” are useless in controlling the link equity movement.

The old PageRank algorithm isn’t as important as it once was. Plus, Google is typically rather adept at deciphering and dismissing these claims. As a result, it usually isn’t worth your time.

To shape the flow of your link equity, using rel=”no follow” or embedding a remotely executable JavaScript file that makes it so that browsers and visitors can see the links but Google is unlikely to see or follow those links is generally poor use of your time because it doesn’t affect things that much.

Canonicalization and redirects lose a little bit of link equity. Non-optimal ones, such as 302s, JS redirects, and so on, may lose more than 301, rel=canonical, and so on.

So, if I have a 301 redirect or a rel=canonical from one page to another, those will cost or lose you a tiny amount of link equity. However, adopting non-ideal redirects or canonicalization methods, such as a JavaScript-based redirect or a 302 or 307 instead of a 301, could be more costly. So, if you’re going to do a redirect or canonicalization, 301s or rel=canonicals are the best way to proceed.

So, bearing these ideas in mind, let’s go over three of the most prevalent link equity flow concerns we find on websites.

Factors affecting link equity

Follow or nofollow links

Links followed or not followed are referred to as “follow” or “nofollow” links. Search engines do not crawl or “follow” links with the nofollow tag. These aren’t going to pass link equity.

Relevance of the link

If I link to a website regarding automobile engine components from a page about homeschooling advice, the link is unlikely to be of much use to the reader. Because Google knows relevance better than ever, it’s critical to remember that links only have value if they’re regarded as relevant and useful to a real person.

Indexed page

You are unlikely to gain a link to your website from a webpage that is not in Google’s index. For various reasons, the page may not be indexed by Google. For example, the webpage may be buried within a website, Google may choose not to index the webpage or the entire website, or the website may submit instructions to search engines instructing them not to crawl or index a particular webpage.

Linking page and website’s strength

A link from the New York Times website will be more credible than one from your local paper. However, a newer website may also lack the authority of an older website.

What’s the best way to see how much link juice I have?

Google took away all access to PageRank scores on March 7, 2016. However, a slew of tools is available to examine your backlinks and even additional page authority ratings, such as Moz’s Page Authority, SemRush Authority Score, and Ahrefs’ URL Rating.

These rankings are based on metrics that are important for link-building campaigns. Any SEO embarking on a link-building effort must understand what they are, how they work, and how to use them. Even if obtained from authentic sources, links from unrelated sites or to unrelated material can be detrimental—link relevance is important.

Link Juice and nofollow links

If you’ve heard of no-follow links, you might be wondering if they pass link juice. When you tell Google that a link should not affect your page’s reputation, you’re telling them that the link should not be followed. This is important for user-generated content like comments or if you don’t want to weaken your site’s relevancy by referring to a non-related site. High-value following links will provide you with the best results.

How to increase your web page’s link juice

Here are a few strategies for maximizing link juice.

  • Create topic clusters and create content worth linking to.
  • Interviews with high-ranking websites are a great way to get your name out there.
  • Create shareable visual content.
  • Participate in an event as a sponsor or as a speaker
  • Make connections with other businesses or influential people.
  • On your website, provide social media sharing links.
  • On social media, post frequently.
  • SSL encryption
  • Internal links should be utilized.

Here’s an SEO strategy that’ll get you results fast:

link juice can be derived from existing material. We’ll show you how to identify internal material that includes your keywords using your keyword list.

Finding internal link juice targets 

Find pages that include the keyword for which you wish to create internal text links using this Google search operator.

  • [site:linkilo.co “internal links”] [site:yoursite.com “your keyword”]

This is a very simple way to get more link juice if needed.

Pages to check for backlinks

Contact page 

Below the fold, you can construct a bulleted list of links that won’t prevent consumers from completing forms.

Privacy Policies and Terms of Service

The majority of people do not consider using these pages at all. Therefore, a bulleted list of links can be added again below the fold.

About pages

This is becoming more widespread. This page is frequently used to insert keyword targets.

News or press: You can easily access past press release pages without causing inconvenience to users because no one reads them.

“Meet the team” pages 

You can include trailing “About the Company” sections with links if the page leads to individual team member bios.

Sitemaps

Sitemaps can help with crawling, indexing, and boosting your internal linking strategy for sites with a lot of material.

Homepage

The homepage is the most important page on the site. It should include links to some of the most competitive search terms you’re attempting to rank for.

Common issues with link equity flow

Common issues with link equity flow

External links are distributed among a few pages on a huge website.

You have a massive site with thousands to tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of pages, but only a few of them are earning any significant number of external links. So the ones in pink have been emphasized. As a result, these pages point to the pink pages.

However, there are other sites on this website, like these purple ones, where you essentially want to acquire link equity since you know you need to rank for the phrases and pages that these purple ones are targeting. Still, they’re not getting the external links that these pink pages are.

External links are limited to the homepage of a smaller site.

This time, we’re dealing with a small site, a very small site, with 5 to 10 pages, possibly up to 50 pages, but in general, a pretty small site. This type of presence is common among many small enterprises and local businesses, with only the homepage receiving any link equity.

So, what are our options in such situations? There isn’t much to share. There is just so much that a homepage can connect to. First and foremost, we must provide service to our customers. If we don’t, our search engine rankings will undoubtedly suffer.

The site’s nav/IA hides or minimizes pages that target mid-long tail keywords.

So, I have a large site with pages that target keywords that don’t receive much traffic but are still crucial. Because they’re hyper-targeted to good customers, they could significantly increase the value we obtain from our website.

Unfortunately, one of the difficulties in this scenario is that your information architecture has disguised them. As a result, your top-level navigation and possibly even secondary-level navigation do not link to them. As a result, they’re hidden deep within the webpage, buried beneath a mountain of other information.

How can I keep my link equity from dwindling?

Locate broken internal links

Is it possible that some of the links on your site are broken? You may find out using a tool like Screaming Frog SEO Spider, or Linkilo WordPress Plugin, which crawls a URL and reports on the status of any links it discovers.

Update any outdated URLs

If you’ve ever changed a page’s URL address, other websites may still link to it. The Top Pages report from Majestic can help you locate all of your website’s pages with links pointing to them from other websites. If any pages in the report have a 4xx status, it’s a good idea to set up 301 redirects or contact the website owners to ask them to remedy the broken links. Looking at Google Search Console’s crawl errors report for your website is another useful technique to locate 404 error pages.

Do not create several versions of the website or pages.

Duplicate versions of a website or a page are a common SEO blunder that must be corrected. This frequently happens when many live copies of the home page or multiple versions of the site. A few examples are as follows:

  • http://www.example.com/index.php
  • http://www.example.com 
  • www.example.com 

The problem occurs when internal and external links to multiple versions of the same page are made. This weakens the overall power of the principal URL that appears in search results and can often hurt keyword rankings. Canonical tags should be used if it is impossible to redirect duplicate versions of pages to their desired location.

What can I do to increase the value of my backlinks?

Use internal links to your advantage.

Google closely scrutinizes internal links on your website. It’s a statement about the pages you want your visitors to visit when navigating your site. For example, if you have a high-value service page that you want to rank well in search results, you should probably add it to your website’s navigation or find a way to enhance the number of internal links.

Linkilo is an excellent tool for determining the number of internal links pointing to a specific page and the anchor text used for those links.

Get external websites to link to you.

Link building is the most effective approach to increasing your website’s authority. It’s easier stated than done, but it’s the most effective way. There are various sources and ways to use while looking for links.

Conclusion

Contextual links from reliable, established websites with high authority help to improve a website’s reputation. The value of a connection must be determined, but the most important factor is its relevancy. Internal and external connections convey link equity, so keep that in mind. So simply linking internal material will give you extra link juice.

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