Internal links help your blog and help your readers at the same time.
Your blog posts are going to achieve a few different things.
1. Solve your readers' problems.
2. Help readers achieve their goals by showing them exactly what to do and how to do it.
3. Build a trusting relationship between you and your readers so they're comfortable doing business with you.
Clearly, accomplishing the three things above can't be done with just one article or blog post.
So, every post you create is one piece of your overall content marketing strategy.
But the question is: how do you connect all of those blog posts together so your readers are engaged and want to stay on your blog longer?
You achieve that with a simple blogging trick to keep your readers engaged.
And that trick is: Internal Links
What are internal links?
Internal links link one page or post on your website to another page or post on your website. Using internal links helps your blog readers and search engines, like Google, to find content on your site. Also, internal links help Google to rank your content in search results.
The secret is adding links strategically so they don't interfere with your audience's experience.
Following are three strategies to help you use internal links in a balanced and effective manner.
Strategy #1: Plan your internal links.
You've got a new topic to blog about in your niche.
Now, take a few moments to review content you've published recently, including landing pages for selling your services/products, and cornerstone content.
Next, choose three to five links and think about how you can use those links to take your readers to other posts on your blog that you want to highlight for them.
For instance, when writing a post about getting started as a blogger, I might mention some common blogging mistakes that rookies make and the need to avoid them.
But, instead of listing all of the blogging mistakes in that post, I'd have a "blogging mistakes" hyperlink that takes readers to another post on Content Igniters explaining the blogging mistakes that new bloggers must avoid.
Internal links are a non-invasive and non-pushy way to let your readers know that you've got additional information on a topic they can access if they need it.
This raises a question: Suppose I hadn't already written a post on "blogging mistakes?"
And what if I didn’t already have an article written about using calls to action?
Step #3 will address that question and give a quick reminder about the flexibility of blogging.
Strategy #2: Use language that stimulates curiosity.
As you get to know who makes up your audience, you'll understand what they're interested in and what they care about.
Think about what compels readers to come to your blog and when creating your internal links use words and phrases that match their interests and will stimulate their curiosity.
You'll notice that this is not pushy at all. I don't even need to tell them to check the post out. Many readers will simply do so because it's relevant to their needs.
By the way, don't worry if you don't find all these internal linking opportunities when writing a first draft. As you go back to edit your draft many of them will show up and then you can take advantage of using them.
Strategy #3: Use content to spawn more content.
I employ this strategy regularly, in fact, it's one of the easiest ways to come up with new ideas for blog posts.
If I hadn't already written about blogging mistakes, but mentioned them in my latest post, I simply make a note on my calendar to write an instructional post on the topic of blogging mistakes.
Then I get to work on writing that post. Once it's completed, I go back to the post where I mentioned blogging mistakes and that gave me the idea to write on the topic and add the hyperlink.
NOTE: One of the smartest things you can regularly do is to look at posts you've published to see where you can add hyperlinks to other posts on your blog. You don't have to write a perfect post with all of the right internal links before hitting publish. Simply go back on a regular basis, review your posts, and look at where you could add some.
Be like Spiderman
You can create your own sticky web of content to help readers move around your blog by using the 3 internal linking strategies I've highlighted here.
Internal linking is a simple blogging trick to,
- keep your readers engaged and on your site longer.
- help you create authority in your niche.
- have your blog viewed as a go-to and trusted resource.
Have fun creating your internal links.