How should I use no-index to maximize link juice?
 by Kristi Hagen

How should I use no-index to maximize link juice?

  • I know that fewer links on a page equals more link juice, and that having too many links dilutes the juice. That leads me to three related questions;
    1. If one of our pages has 12 links that all go to the same Widgets page, are they counted individually as 12? ...Or are they only counted as one link since they're all pointed to the same page?
    2. Do the navigation links count or is it only the links on the page below the H1 tag?
    3. And, I'm concerned that our Privacy Policy, About Us, and other low value pages are diminishing the value of our important pages. Since many of them need to stay on the site but don't get much traffic, should we no-index them? ...What do you recommend?

Answer:

  1. PageRank-wise, 12 links to the same page are only counted as one link. Our assumption based on Google's past comments is the first link within the HTML code is the one that counts; succeeding links are ignored in regards to anchor text.
  2. Yes, all links count: including your header / footer navigation links.
  3. It's important that your About Us and Privacy Policy pages are indexable. Google uses them as site quality indicators. Therefore you should not no-index them.

    In regards to your other "Low Value" pages, it depends on what they are. If they are outdated or no longer relevant, you should just delete them and let them go 404 not found.

    However, IF a low value page has some very good links to it, you should consider updating and improving it or else 301 redirecting the URL to another more relevant page to save the link juice — don't just redirect it to the home page or category page.

    Or, if we were talking about media gallery pages with just a photo but hardly any text, the no-index tag would be useful if you want to keep the page on the site. Such pages often generate a Soft 404* error in Google as well.

    *Soft 404 – a URL that returns a ...

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