NOFOLLOW vs. DOFOLLOW Links SEO 2.0

Dofollow Blog

This is the best way to pay back a community that is good to you.

So how do I share SEO 2.0 links on click-finders.com?  I get this question a lot ever since my SEO vs. SEO 2.0 What is The Difference post.  Well in order to better answer that, I think we should go over a brief reminder of the different kinds of links that you can give.  It’s important to understand this in order to fully appreciate the benefits of SEO 2.0 and how it can help you or hurt you.  Yes, you CAN hurt your site by linking out to other sites.  Don’t worry, we will get into all the details in just a second.  First though, let’s cover the basic categories of links.

<NOFOLLOW> Links:

<NOFOLLOW> is a value that can be assigned to the [REL] HTML attribute that tells the search engines to discount this link.  It was designed originally to allow web site owners (primarily Blogs and Forums) the option to identify spam or potential spam links and assign this attribute so that the search engines would not index the link and therefore not pass any “link juice” or authority to the linked site from the source site.

Example of the <NOFOLLOW> link in action:

<a href=”http://www.example.com/” rel=”nofollow”>anchor text</a>

“There is great debate in the SEO community about whether or not the <NOFOLLOW> attribute works or not.  My own personal testing indicates that the search engines still assign some value to these links, as some sites with only <NOFOLLOW> links have been known to climb and reach the top of the SERP’s.  More on this in another post coming soon….”

<DOFOLLOW> Links:

There is no specific HTML attribute for this link.  This is the link we as SEO’s and web site owners strive for every day for the sites we are working on.  This link passes actual “link juice” from the originating site to the linked to site.  For example, if you own a site that is well established, has good traffic and a decent Google PageRank your “link juice” will be much higher than a newly launched site. 

Example of the <DOFOLLOW> link in action:

<a href=”http://www.example.com/”>anchor text</a>

 If you, with your well established site, give a link to another site, you are telling Google you like that site and it is worthy of your link.  The older and more established your site, the more “link juice” you can pass to another site.

“The <DOFOLLOW> link is hands down the BEST link you can attain for your web site or give to another site.  This is what SEO 2.0 is all about.  If you read the previous SEO 2.0 article you will see why.”

Can linking out to another site actually hurt my site?

The short answer is yes, it can.  Let me explain.  Again, Google see’s each link out from your site as a “vote” for another site.  So it takes it pretty seriously when you give a link to another site.  What they do not want, is trusted, reputable sites providing links out to SPAM sites.  Mostly these sites are of the unwanted SPAM emails you find in your Junk Email boxes.  The words are so potent, I won’t even mention them in this post for fear of affecting Google (LOL). 

“In short, you should never link out to a known SPAM site or a site that is even remotely SPAMMY.  Make sure your links out are quality sites that provide a relevant service or benefit to your visitor.”

Other types of links that you can get / give include:

                Paid Links or Affiliate Links

                Image Links

                Side Bar or Blog Roll Links

                Footer Links

So how do I handle links given out on this site?  Simple….you get links from this site by visiting, reading  and commenting on this Blog.  You can also write an article and submit it for a guest post spot in which you can place multiple links back to your site (up to 3) and more in a resource box.  Comment links are treated as fairly as possible.  I require 3 “APPROVED” comment posts to start getting <DOFOLLOW> links.  The first three comments are <NOFOLLOW>.  I set this up to deter SPAMMERS.  Also, pure SPAM usually gets deleted immediately.  On occasion, I will strip the link and approve the comment because either the comment was good and relevant or the English was so bad it made me LOL.

I also never approve links to “bad neighborhoods”.

Good luck…and keep on Blogging!

Image Source:  FREE Blogger Template & SEO Tips

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  • Gary Moore

    Hi Mike! Thanks for the article. It was very informative. I never knew about links and the difference they have.

    Looking forward to reading more!

  • Hi Gary ! Thanks for the comment and for reading.

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  • Sheri Wilson

    Thanks for writing this Mike. So if I understand you correctly, you WILL give links from your site to anyone who posts on your blog?

    Can’t that hurt your site? I heard it could.

  • Hi Sheri,

    Thanks for reading. Yes, allowing DOFOLLOW links off your site CAN hurt you if you link to the “bad neighborhoods” out there. Those sites that are primarily SPAM, Illegal, ADULT only material, etc… I always view every link and every site I link too. It I think it is SPAMMY or a “bad neighbor” then I scrub the link and sometimes the comment all together.

    Thanks for the comment!

  • is it reasonable to encourage do follow links between blogs I have an on going bi-directional communication with? Or should I just take what I can get?

  • @Ken – Anytime you can share a DOFOLLOW link and get a DOFOLLOW link it’s a good thing! So encouraging that between other blogs is always a good thing in my opinion.

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  • Michael

    Good informative post.

    Would reciprical dofollow links between sites cancel eachother out, like juice-wise?

    Or would one link still be worth more than the other depending on the age/authority etcetc of the website?

  • Hi Michael…thanks for a GREAT question!

    Link Juice is calculated based on several factors that include: Pagerank, Number of web site pages on the domain, number of external links and other factors. Theoretically, is both sites were identical with the same pagerank , content amont and number of external links to the same content, then yes, they could cancel each other out. However, any link is evaluted on it’s own merit, so I would not worry too much about this happening. It would be pretty hard to have to IDENTICAL sites trying to share links in this manner.

    Hope this helps….

  • Very well explained about the no follow and do follow links. Search engines still adds some value for these no follow links, what i personally feel is more than backlinks the nofollow links that we get from blogs, forums etc will help us in generating the traffic.

  • this work is totally Wicked and fantastic !! Congrat !!!

  • I agree that getting back link with juice is very important to gain page rank and traffic.i put your link in my post on my blog hope this was alright with you.If not let me know and i will remove it.
    I thought that you had some great info that related with mine which could explain more about the topic.

  • Hi Peter!

    Thanks for reading and the comment. Backlinks to this site are ALWAYS welcome! Thanks!

  • Hey Mike,

    I couldn’t have written the definition and differentiation better myself. On the other hand if I’d be you I’d focus on the positive aspects of real links aka “dofollow” links as well. They way you describe them it sound a bit scary for webmasters.

    Sincerely, tad of SEO 2.0

    • @TAD Chef – Coming from you brother….That’s the best compliment I could ask for! I here ya on the “scary” saide of linking out. I will address this in another post!

      Thanks for reading and commenting!

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  • superb tips on dofollow and nofollow… very welly explained!

    Thanks…
    nikhil recently posted..Different Web Designs & Their Impact on TrafficMy Profile

  • Thanks everyone for reading and the kind words!
    admin recently posted..Does SEO Still Work After the Penguin and Panda Updates?My Profile

  • Good post Mike.
    I’m still learning but I think 2.0 is more important after the penguin update.
    Im taking any back links anyway I can get them at the moment. I find this very time consuming.

    • Thanks for reading and the comment!

      Don’t get to desperate for links, that can hurt you also. Just remember quality links (blog comments, trusted directories, blog articles, web 2.0 properties and social book marking) will go a lot further for your SEO program!
      Mike Glover recently posted..Does SEO Still Work After the Penguin and Panda Updates?My Profile

  • Hi i want to ask you something about the nofollow attribute.

    What if i set comments and backlinks to be DOFOLLOW but i have cloaked links in all posts that have NOFOLLOW attribute?
    Does it affect my page rank or should i put DOFOLLOW in all my cloaked links?

    Will google block my site for having too many affiliate links ?

    Thank you for responding since this is quite important for my site.