One of the biggest low-hanging fruits that a business can grab to improve their ranks in Google is to use the pages already on their site to link back to a target page (for example, a product category or a service page).
Example workflow for internal linking
An easy process to go through with internal linking is:
- Pick a landing page that exists on your site, a.k.a. the page you want to boost up in organic search results. Hopefully this page is already optimized for traffic and conversion-friendly.
- Think of and do research for keywords that you can use to link back to this page. You will mostly be using generic terms to link with, because using too much of the same anchor text is spammy and can result in you being slapped for that page.
- Look at your site’s analytics. Do you see any incoming search terms for that landing page already? If so, add those search terms to your planned keyword list for the internal links. The goal here is to push those ranks even higher for things you’re getting search traffic on already. If you don’t have incoming search results for that page, skip this step.
- From your keyword list use site:yourwebsitehere.com “your picked keyword here” in Google to find areas on your site that you can link back with that anchor text to your landing page. The websites ranked highest after the advanced search operator site: are the pages most relevant for that keyword.
- After discovering areas that you can link back with anchor text, next find pages that are just relevant to the landing page that you could link back from with generic anchor text (for example, here, click here, this page).
Just because it’s links from your own site doesn’t mean they’re harmless
As I somewhat mentioned above, when varying up the anchor text of your internal linking, you can be penalized for being too aggressive. Be careful and make sure to keep your internal links relevant like you would for regular link building.
This isn’t just limited to linking back from pages and blog posts. You can start internally linking from your footer and sidebar as well — just make sure to play it safe with sitewide links. That’s why I recommend just starting out with pages and blog posts.