SEO News You Can Use: Google Adds Two New Nofollow Link Attributes

Brandon George
SEO News You Can Use

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Google rolled out a major update last week to its nofollow link attributes. Google has added two new link attributes to help it understand links:

Before, there was only rel = “nofollow” … But now you can use rel = “sponsored” and rel = “ugc” as well.

The rel = “sponsored” attribute identifies links as part of advertising, a sponsorship or something similar. The rel = “ugc” attributed will identify links within user generated content, such as a forum post or comments.

All three of these link attributes will be treated as “hints” about the links to exclude as ranking signals. So, they won’t be ignored.

Google’s official announcement of the nofollow links change:

“When nofollow was introduced, Google would not count any link marked this way as a signal to use within our search algorithms. This has now changed.

All the link attributes — sponsored, UGC and nofollow — are treated as hints about which links to consider or exclude within Search.

We’ll use these hints — along with other signals — as a way to better understand how to appropriately analyze and use links within our systems.”

Google added that there’s no need for site owners and webmasters to change any existing nofollow links because it will abide by those attributes already in place.

More from Google:

“Links contain valuable information that can help us improve search, such as how the words within links describe content they point at. Looking at all the links we encounter can also help us better understand unnatural linking patterns. By shifting to a hint model, we no longer lose this important information, while still allowing site owners to indicate that some links shouldn’t be given the weight of a first-party endorsement.”

Also, Google announced that a Meta Robots Nofollow link will also be treated as a hint.

Google explained further about why it changed Nofollow link to a hint right here.

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BrightLocal Launches New Free Local SEO Tool: Be sure to check this out: BrightLocal has launched a new free tool called “Local RankFlux” that alerts marketers to changes in local search rankings across multiple industries. The new tool tracks 26 verticals and is focused on the Google local algorithm. BrightLocal says its new tool tracks more than 14,000 keywords, including about 560 keywords per industry vertical in 20 cities.

Case Study Shows Why it’s Smart to use FAQ Schema: Here’s an interesting case study about how to improve your organic click-through rates by using FAQ Schema. The case study analyzed a sample of 1,000 keywords and ultimately led t doubling the CTR on a landing page in less than three months. Among the highlights, the case study states that if FAQ snippets are implemented correctly, it will help you take up more SERPs real estate room, pushing down all of your competitors.

Google Makes Ranking Updates to Better Recognize Original Reporting: Google has rolled out algorithm updates over the last few months that rewards original reporting with better rankings in Google Search. So, stories that were the original source will be ranked better in Search and in Google News and Google Discover. Stories will also remain at the top of the Google News cluster longer.

Help With Google My Business Listings: Here are some ways to help SEO Companies use Google My Business listings with clients. GMB listings for businesses can become a headache to manage, especially not knowing the rules to follow. This helps break down some common roadblocks.

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Facebook Announces Update to its ‘Today In’ Tool: Facebook announced an interesting update last week about a second major expansion of a tool that exposes people to more local news and information, helping to drive more website traffic and new readers to local news sites and organizations. Facebook said it has expanded its “Today In” service to 6,000 cities and towns across the United States from 400 the first time around. The service, which was launched in 2018, allows Facebook users to to opt into news and information from local organizations. Facebook said 1.6 million people have already activated Today In and currently receive news from about 1,200 publishers every week.

Editor’s Note: “SEO News You Can Use” is a weekly blog post posted every Monday morning rounding up all the top SEO news from around the world. Our goal is to make SEOblog.com a one-stop shop for everyone looking for SEO news, education and for hiring an SEO expert with our comprehensive SEO agency directory.

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