By now most of you except for the newbies out there should have at least heard of the nofollow tag. If you don’t know what it is you really need to. This pertains to webmasters and others that own websites or help create them for others. The nofollow tag was created by Google to reduce spam and make it easier for webmasters and website owners to control what links should be followed and passed page rank and which should not.
Google came out with the nofollow tag several years ago and many websites have been using it for comments, paid links and to better carve the routing for users and web bots from pages and links on the website. Any outbound links to unknown websites or neighborhoods that have even the slightest chance of being sketchy (spam, scam, infomercial crap that doesn’t work, affiliate program links, etc…) should have what many in the field refer to as a link condom or nofollow tag.
If you use a nofollow tag its as easy as including rel=”nofollow” in your html code. The nofollow goes right after the target url in the link code. Make sure there is not a space in it – its nofollow, not no follow. If you put the space in there it won’t have any effect. It will just be glanced over and Google will still pass page rank on to these links.
By using a nofollow tag appropriately you can tell Google next time their search bots crawl your site that you aren’t voting for those links. This is a must for paid links as Google does not like paid links and especially sitewide links. If you have sitewide links that don’t use nofollow you will shortly be on the receiving end of a 50% rank deduction penalty – whcih sucks and takes forever to get out of. So it is best to put on a link condom and utilize nofollow tags when you link to outside websites of questionable origin.
Another good practice is to either disallow any comment links or use nofollow on all of them. Comment link spam is rampant across the internet. If you have a website with any traffic I am sure you have seen some and probably a lot of comment spam. Lately it mostly comes from these idiots in Romania and Russia that are trying to get people to their Cialis and similar prescription drug websites.
Don’t give spammers a link. They will use it to rip people off and it will hurt your website. Instead start implementing the nofollow tag on your website. You will rank better for it. All good SEO personnel use nofollow – you should too. Put on a link condom and watch your rankings and traffic grow.