• Jamie Press

    Thanks Erin! I’m about to embark on an internal linking crusade for an e-commerce client and these tips are just what the doctor ordered. Cheers.

  • http://twitter.com/H4WTS Simon Hawtin

    Dynamic footers would be a pretty useful internal linking tool. Or would they? From a user perspective I feel the footer should have an entry point to key pages within your site, therefore not necessarily relevant to what’s on the page at the time. However, interesting thought. Thanks for the post.

  • http://twitter.com/damolade danielle i devereux

    hi Erin,

    Thanks for this – I’m still trying to get on top of al things cannonical. I didnt understand this:

    “”Preferred URL: http://www.352media.com/blog/Summing-Up-SEO-September.aspx

    Indexed URL: http://www.352media.com/blog/post.aspx?id=3d843bb3-76b9-41c3-91b9-c80f92ac75af

    Upon further investigation, we discovered that, once again, we were sending Google mixed signals. Although we were using the preferred version of our URL in all of our internal and external linking, we were telling Google that the first URL was the canonical version — so that’s the one it indexed.””

    If Google indexed the first url,the one you wanted indexed, then what was the problem? Can you clarify what you mean by “sending Google mixed signals”?

    Thanks :)

  • http://twitter.com/victorpan victorpan

    Dynamic footers make sense if it’s with the user’s intent in mind. Personally I think navigational bars are the best for “entry points” and dynamic footers for deeper diving into the content. I think W3G Schools does this particularly well.

  • Ed Buffey

    You mention how the wrong version of a URL is indexed by Google but you don’t give an example of how you fixed it. I used .htaccess to provide a search engine friendly form of a URL. Yet Google indexed the one with the query parameters. How do I fix this?

  • http://twitter.com/OneWebCompany One Web Company

    I experienced a similar problem with my blog on Joomla 3. Turned out to be a bug in the sef system. You can read more about that problem and resolution here: http://onewebcompany.com/blog/57-marketing/search-engine-optimization/116-canonical-urls-in-joomla-3-x.html

  • Troy Redington

    best bet is to 301. if you can’t, the 2nd best option is a canonical.

  • http://www.brickmarketing.com/ Nick Stamoulis

    “ModCloth’s internal linking strategy is designed to provide value to users rather than to game search engine results pages.”

    That’s probably one of the best ways to set up your own internal linking. Your users should always be priority #1, not the search engines. That’s what keeps your SEO from going over to the “dark side.”

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  • http://twitter.com/erinever Erin Everhart

    Ah, I see the confusion. Slight typo on my part. Should be that we were telling Google the *second* URL was the canonical version.

    So, all of our internal and external linking was saying one thing and our sitemap and canonical was telling Google another.

    We’ve since updated it and have seen a much stronger indexation rate on our blog because were were able to match up all of our signals.

    Does that help clarify?

  • http://twitter.com/erinever Erin Everhart

    I agree with Troy. We change the canonical and what was in our sitemap to the friendlier filename. We likely would have also implemented a 301 just to make our bases covered, but we’re in the process of building our site so the URL structure will change anyway.

    I love 301s, but if you have a hoard of them, it can get cumbersome, and canons are fairly quick to implement.

  • Michael Cottam

    Nice job on this, Erin. Internal linking is more important for ranking than people often give it credit for, and it can work both ways! As an example, going nuts with your tag and category archives in WordPress can quickly show Google that every page has a billion internal links to it, and therefore is roughly equal :-). The same applies to navigational structure, like nested pulldowns. At first glance, you might think you want to keep cascading them pulldowns right down to your individual product pages…but, of course, that dilutes the link juice to your major category pages and can make your product pages outrank your major category pages for the category’s target term.

    Anyway, well done, and especially liked the e-commerce example…thought that was really clear.

  • Catherine Brock

    Thanks for this article. It’s very timely as I just came across this issue recently on a client site — the navigation points to a page that isn’t indexed because it has a canonical link that defines a different URL as the authority page. My thought was that the navigation and canonical link are both indicators of “authority” and so they should be consistent with one another, correct?

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