What is internal linking, and why is it important when engaging in SEO for accountants?
To answer the former, internal linking is when you link to another post or page on your website. Simple enough. The benefits are, broadly, twofold.
First, it allows your readers to access other relevant resources on your website. So this helps with driving traffic and engagement with your brand.
Second, it also provides an SEO benefit to your website, as it affects Google’s pattern of crawling your website.
You might have heard of the phrase “hyperlink”, which refers to the text linking to the page you’re looking to direct people’s attention to (and Google’s). In SEO for accountants, this is more commonly known as “anchor text.”
The Significance Of Internal Linking In SEO For Accountants
The interesting thing is, internal links are treated slightly differently to external links – from an SEO point of view.
External links usually give more authority and search ranking ability. Think of it like a vote. If an independent, authoritative website links to you, it’s like getting an important vote of confidence in your website. If you vote for yourself (i.e. by linking on your website to your own page), it carries less weight.
So, when it comes to internal links and SEO for accountants, the important thing is to use them in a non-manipulative way.
If your links look credible and are useful to your visitors, for instance, then you will reduce your bounce rate and positively impact your rankings.
Web pages – especially blog posts – need internal links. A lack of them on a page which is lacking these links will be highly isolated on your website, and will hamper its ability to rank in the search engines.
Be careful, however, not to take things to the extreme. Stuffing your pages with internal links is a bad idea, and will likely be seen as spammy by Google.
A page with lots of links on it will send out less authority than a page with fewer links on it. So, if you’ve fallen into this trap before, consider doing a spring clean of your website! It can have a highly positive influence. Whittle things down to what matters the most, and get rid of all the junk. Your visitors – and Google – will almost certainly thank you for it.
What Should An Internal Linking Structure Look Like?
Every website is different, so there’s no universal answer to this question. However, a typical accountant website might look something like this:
The homepage has roughly ten links to internal pages (services, contact, about and so on). One hop away from here, you’ve got your ten pages of category pages, sub-category pages and so on where people can delve deeper into your website.
From this point, each of these pages might have a maximum of ten unique links, which gets you 2 hops away from the homepage.
The important thing to note in SEO for accountants, is that no page should be more than three links (three “hops”) away from your homepage. This is generally true for smaller-medium websites, although for larger ones it may not necessarily follow this rule.
Be careful, therefore, to build smart categories of pages at the beginning of your website design project. As you blog and do SEO for accountants going forward, make sure your users and the search engines don’t have to trawl through endless links to get to where they want to go.
Some Warnings For Internal Linking
Be aware, if you have internal links on your page and no one ever clicks on them, that’s a bad SEO sign for your page.
No two pages should be targeting the same keyword or searcher intent.
Similarly, no two links should be using the same anchor text to point to different pages. The important word is “canonicalise”! Don’t allow your web pages to compete with one another.
Only use the “no follow” attribute in your links when pointing to external links you do not trust. Some people like to use the attribute for internal linking in SEO for accountants, but we find that the following works better:
- Remove low value, low engagement content from your website. Create internal links which users actually like and want.
- Prevent “orphans” – i.e. make sure important pages have links to and from them.