What is SEO and Link Juice and its importance to SEO ?

What is SEO and Link Juice ?

SEO literally means Search Engine Optimization. It deals with qualitative and quantitative improvement of content, traffic, popularity of the site. There are two points of views for SEO : one if from the perspective of users and other is from search engines. User’s side of SEO is all about understanding users' views about what they are looking for,the type of keywords that are used while searching, the pages that grab their attention. Search engine’s side of SEO deals with the process of looking through the content of the page with crawling, indexing and then ranking the page based on several internal factors.

Depending on the rank a particular site/page has on search engines, determines its place on the search engine results page(SERP). Search engines look through the content on the site and index it which will help in fetching the page when the user queries the page.

Organic results will drive the ranking. Although marketing, paid posts, reviews, blog posts increase traffic, they are only temporary and constantly need to be funded. Whereas relevant content which is designed basing the views of users will bring in actual profits.

SEO analysis can be done inhouse if the expert is available or external consultants can be used. Two broad categories of SEO or white hat and black hat. White hat deals with actual techniques and strategies for improving the traffic and ranking of the page. While Black hat SEO does increase the traffic initially, it uses underhanded means like spam to generate traffic which is detrimental in the long run and leads to penalties. So care needs to be taken while using SEO. The main focus while designing the page/site should be on the user's point of view and what the users will want to look into on the page. This makes the content worthy and also increases the views. Sometimes views might not be directly proportional to the profit because not all users will buy the products ona page. So content plays a major role and usability of the site also helps.

What is Link Juice ?

Link juice is SEO jargon used to refer to the value of a page/website that is passed between pages/sites. The more the number of external domains linking to our page/site possesses, the higher is it’s ranking on the search engine. For example if there are two pages, page 1 and page 2- when page 1 is linked to page 2, then the link juice flows from page 1 to page 2. In this case if page is popular and page 2 is a newly created page, then because of the flow of link juice between the pages, the ranking of page 2 also increases.

Although link juice is only one of the factors that contributes to influencing the ranking of a page/site on the search engines’s ranking, it still does help in boosting the page’s popularity. The better the flow of link juice between the pages of the site, the more users it brings to the site increasing the traffic and thereby increasing the ranking of the site.

There are several things that need to be looked into inorder to improve the link juice. The content on the page plays a major role in attracting the users to the site. So placing appropriate and worthy content on the page brings about higher views. Also brand popularity helps with bringing in more reviews and blog posts. Using marketing techniques will attract users to look into different pages of the site, allowing the link juice to flow between the pages which results in an increase of page ranking.

Internal linking helps in navigating between the pages which allows the link juice to flow. Emphasis needs to be placed on checking the orphaned and unnecessary links. These will have a detrimental effect on link juice. Care needs to be taken to relink the orphan pages. Site crawls will help in identifying URLs that give 404 status. Orphan pages and URLs with 404 status will decrease the page’s ranking on the search engine. So, finding and fixing broken links needs to be part of regular maintenance.

Optimize the content of the page and also make a list of keywords on the page. These keywords can be placed on the main page and they can be linked to the needed page, thereby resulting in more links to the page increasing the link juice. Making the content worthy will automatically attract visitors boosting the site traffic and link juice flow.

Link juice is the term that is used in SEO to refer to the power passed to a site through links. It basically serves as a vote of confidence for your site. Since search engines like google, like to give more power to people than what they are looking for, it means that link juice is one of the important factors to increase your site’s search ranking.One of the first priorities to improve your search ranking is to earn the votes of confidence from other sites. There are a lot of ways to accomplish this. Sometimes you can follow the direct route. That means specific link building techniques like document sharing, guest posting, social media marketing, press releases and more. Trading links for money is a huge no-no and you should not do it as search engines do not like this method.

Although direct approach to link building is good, the backbone of link building strategy has to come from presenting excellent content on your website that causes viewers to share it across the web. When consumers make it obvious that the content of your website is loved, the search engine can only give them more of what they want.

The amount of link juice that you get depends from links depends on the sites linking to you. Let's look more into how the link juice is calculated. For example, consider that you have two sites namely site A and site B. if all the other ranking factors are the same and if site A has one external link pointing to it and site B has none, then site A will rank higher in search results because of the link juice it receives. So what happens if both sites have links pointing to them? This is where it gets a little complicated. Let's assume that all the linking sites have the same amount of authority. Let’s say site A receives links from two sites and site B receives a link from one site. Since A receives more links than B, A gets more link juice making it’s rank higher in the search results. But link juice gets spread out by all the links being sent out from the site. So now consider that, if sites linking to A also link to other sites and sites linking to B link exclusively to site B. Depending on how many sites A’s referrers are linking to, site B might pull even or even higher.

For a long time, people have already tried to control link juice with nofollow and dofollow tags. With dofollow links it’s easy, as the transfer of link juice is equally distributed among all the links going out from the website. It used to be the case that the nofollow attribute meant people could send more link juice to certain sites and none to others. This process is known as page rank sculpting. It was done to concentrate authority on certain links of the site rather than spreading them evenly across all the outgoing links.

Page rank sculpting is possible when a webmaster added a nofollow attribute to one of the outgoing links which meant that the link juice would not transfer to the page that’s nofollowed. But the link juice would instead be redistributed to the other links. This is no longer the case. Now link juice will not get distributed when nofollow tag is used. Instead the juice that would have followed the nofollow site gets dumped into the internet abyss. This raises the concern of link juice leaking from your homepage to nofollow links on your footer or sidebar.

The amount of link juice your homepage passes is divided among the number of links that you have and using nofollow or not would not matter. So try to not overcrowd your site. When it comes to internal links on a site, it's good practice to allow the natural flow of link juice rather than controlling the flow with a nofollow tag. The link juice obtained and distributed within your site keeps your inner pages popular on the web as well as your homepage which helps your entire site with rankings.