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  1. SEO Chat Skiller (1500 - 1999 posts)

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    Link Deep or Link Shallow - Can deeper external links help you out?


    For Google, it seems that many sites that are currently ranking well have a high percentage and number of links pointing to internal pages rather than just the homepage.

    I see two good arguments for why linking deep could be more beneficial than linking to the the homepage. First, it's logical to assume that a site with many links to its internal pages has good content (otherwise, why would links be pointing there) and it seems more 'natural' and 'organic'. Second, the boost to secondary pages will still provide the site with same overall PR amount if proper internal linking is conducted & hilltop algo could easily be tweaked by Google to include 'expert documents' helping to form an 'authority site'.

    What do you think? Should we start moving towards a 30-50% deep link ratio goal?
    CEO & Co-founder of SEOmoz
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    randfish, I am going for a 70:30 split (homepage:deeplink) on well established sites and 100% on new sites. Not sure if I will be gaining anything by splitting but it makes sense to get themed links from one site into specific products on our sites. New sites we just need to get links initially and will then start getting links in deep.
    Fingers crossed!
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    EGOL
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    I have a main site and a subdomain which both compete for many of the same keywords. Both have about the same number of inbound links total. The main site has lots of links hitting home but the subdomain has at least 15x as many links hitting internal pages as hit home. Although there are differences in the content, the optimization style, page format and internal linkage structure are the same.

    The main site does well for the root keyword, but the subdomain wins in almost all other SERPs - and even with just a few backlinks hitting home, it ranks #4 out of 4,300,000 for the keyword of the homepage in a commercial SERP.

    My next site is being built to garner inbound links to internal pages.
    * "It's not the size of the dog in the fight that matters, it's the size of the fight in the dog." Mark Twain
    * "Free advice isn't worth much. Cheap advice is worth even less." EGOL
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    What about outgoing deeplinks?

    Im all in favour of incoming deeplinks, i've found it helps enormously, but what about outbounds?
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    This stands to reason and relates to the theme and sub section topic of sites.

    Why would you link to the top level of a site only when the link would be more relevant to one of its internal pages.
    This makes total sense to me. Personaly I treat each keyword differently and build links relevant to each page pointing to each page - not just the top level.

    Egol

    This is undoubtedly why you get what you do for your subdomain site.
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    >>This stands to reason and relates to the theme and sub section topic of sites.


    We're talking about rank benefits not user benefits though. I'd love to see/hear about some examples/tests on outgoing deep links..
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    Hi Nick

    I am aware of this thanks,
    What I meant is that by linking to specific topical pages rather than the top level theme of a site you stand to get better rankings than if you had not. I am in agreement.

    Also with outgoing links, making them as targeted as possible has a similar benefit (only to a lower extent).
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    OK ;-)

    >>What I meant is that by linking to specific topical pages rather than the top level theme of a site you stand to get better rankings than if you had not.

    That's my point though, is this an seo known fact or just reasonable speculation. I tend to agree with you but would like to know for sure if for nothing else other than interests sake...

    Nick
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    can you explain what Egol means by '15x as many'?

    As in, your site looks like this:

    Main > Subjects > Individual pages

    So, are you saying that he means 'get the Individual Pages to link to each other too, rather than just breadcrumb back to main'?
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    McMasters - from what I read EGOL has -say- X backlinks to the (subdomain) home page and 15*X links to that same site's (various) inner pages...

    Nick, Trevor - I speculate that the positive effect of deep OBLs is speculation, although of the very "educated" type. If the Hub Theory has any value, well directed outbounds would certainly benefit a site, although I don't believe that simply linking to your unrelated link partners' inner pages will help here. There must be more to it than that and I'd love to see test results of some kind.

    What got me to think is that the Google related: command seems to be based on sites rather than pages. It seems to me that G is trying to keep track of the general Theme(s) of each site, and is not solely interested in separate pages linking to each other. Taking this a bit further, G might distinguish between a site's home page and inner pages, and determine a link's value depending on the theme of the referring SITE and the targetted SITE. That way: a link from the
    Vacuum Cleaners R US > Resources > Directory > Sports > Table Tennis page to one of my pages would carry less value, even though the pages themselves are within theme. Similar thing if the target page's Theme doesn't match the rest of the site.

    I feel you can only be a "hub" if you act like one, so rules like these seem only natural to me now.

    Speculation? Yup!
    Last edited by Wit; Oct 26th, 2004 at 08:37 AM.
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    It is speculation to a point as I have done no hard research on this exact topic. I have read about ontopic analysis at www.seoplace.com though with some very good research. Also my own personaly experience quantifies this and so does most people's own experience and research.

    So I would be all of my money that I am right on that one!
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    Regarding External Deeplinks - I would guess they wouldn't be specifically more/less valuable than shallow external links. Most 'hub' sites that I peruse are linking largely to homepages, with occasional deeplinks. If you deeplink a lot, chances are you're a blog...

    Getting deeplinks to your own site though is not easy - most directories and ads/places that would list you are going to link to the homepage. You'll have to offer some good content and good reason for people to link deep. I haven't had much success with it...
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    Originally Posted by randfish
    Regarding External Deeplinks - I would guess they wouldn't be specifically more/less valuable than shallow external links. Most 'hub' sites that I peruse are linking largely to homepages, with occasional deeplinks. If you deeplink a lot, chances are you're a blog...

    Getting deeplinks to your own site though is not easy - most directories and ads/places that would list you are going to link to the homepage. You'll have to offer some good content and good reason for people to link deep. I haven't had much success with it...
    Yeah I fully aggree with you. Deep links will help you spreading link popularity of your site to inner pages, and will put you in eyes of SEs as site which is having natural links.

    This was one of the reason which led me incorporate multi links to a site from my directory. It helps not only getting deep links to many of your pages, but help you in increasing strength of your keywords..

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