The Future of Internal Linking, According to an Expert

3 min read

Internal linking remains an essential SEO strategy, especially in content marketing. In 2023, internal linking continues to be a top priority for SEO professionals due to its proven ability to enhance search engine optimization. It offers a straightforward and effective way to improve your website’s SEO, primarily by linking various pieces of content. This practice, which includes connecting blog posts and other content within your site, should be an integral part of your regular content management routine.

Google’s John Mueller, a recognized authority on SEO, emphasizes the significance of internal linking as a strategic approach. It goes beyond the traditional site breadcrumb navigation and is considered one of the “major things” publishers can do to communicate to Google which content holds the most importance.


Understanding Breadcrumbs Navigation


Have you ever found yourself lost on a website or need help to return to a page where you discovered valuable information? This is where breadcrumb navigation, often called “breadcrumbs,” comes into play.

Breadcrumb navigation typically appears horizontally at the top of a webpage, just below the primary navigation, title bars, and headers. It serves as a secondary navigation aid. Since search results often direct users to specific pages within your website, breadcrumbs help them identify their location within your site’s structure and simplify navigation to higher-level pages.

Breadcrumbs improve site usability and functionality by showcasing the hierarchy of your site’s pages, eliminating the need for users to backtrack or click through numerous pages to find what they need.


The Significance of Breadcrumbs


Breadcrumbs serve a dual purpose by conveying information to users and search engines regarding your site’s content and organizational structure. This not only aids search engines in understanding your pages better but also assists site visitors in comprehending your site’s offerings, potentially extending their time spent on your site.


Breadcrumb Structured Data


Internal navigation, which includes breadcrumb navigation, is associated with breadcrumb-structured data.

Internal navigation empowers users to traverse a website seamlessly, switching between categories and subcategories to discover engaging content. A common query concerns whether employing breadcrumb structured data for internal links is sufficient for SEO purposes.

Here’s the question: “Is internal linking still crucial for SEO if you have structured data for breadcrumbs set up?”

In conclusion, while structured data for breadcrumbs is beneficial, internal linking remains a vital component of SEO. Both strategies complement each other to enhance your website’s search, user experience, and search engine ranking. To maximize SEO benefits, it’s advisable to incorporate internal linking and breadcrumb-structured data into your website’s optimization strategy.


Internal Linking is very crucial


Internal linking, according to Google’s John Mueller, is a way to communicate with Google more than internal navigational links can.

He said

“Yes, absolutely.

It’s something where internal linking is supercritical for SEO.

I think it’s one of the biggest things that you can do on a website to kind of guide Google and guide visitors to the pages that you think are important.

And what you think is important is totally up to you.

You can decide to make things important where you earn the most money or you can make things important where you’re the strongest competitor or maybe you’re the weakest competitor.

With internal linking, you can really kind of focus things on those directions and those parts of your site.

And that’s not something that you can just replace with structured data.

So just because there is structured data on a page somewhere, I wouldn’t see that as a replacement for normal internal linking.


Even if in the structured data you also provide URLs, we don’t use those URLs in the same way as we would use normal internal links on a page.

So it’s definitely not the case that hreflang annotations replace links between country versions or breadcrumb annotations replace links between different levels of a website.

You should really have normal HTML links between the different parts of your website.

And ideally, you should not just have a basic set of links, but rather you should look at it in a strategic way and think about what do you care about the most and how can you highlight that with your internal linking.”


Relevance of internal linking


Internal linking is critical for any website because it aids in the development of site architecture and the distribution of link juice. Internal linking simply said, is any link from one page of a domain to another page inside the same domain. It could be a link to a section. 

Internal link development has various benefits, including improving website authority, usability, web page links, user experience, and even your rankings.


Internal linking can help your overall SEO performance in a variety of ways, including usability and link juice. A winning strategy is to have a solid internal architecture. Now that you’ve obtained the primary keys, it’s time to optimize your own!


Do you want to learn more about SEO and how an SEO-friendly website may help you?

Visit – 2023 In-depth SEO Guide with Proven Results for you.