Common Internal Linking Mistakes You Should Avoid

Internal links are hyperlinks that connect one page of a website to another within the same website. These links are essential for website navigation, structure, and link equity (ranking power) distribution across the site. They help viewers in navigating a website and creating an information hierarchy for that website.

Internal links are also important in SEO since search engines use them to find and index fresh content, as well as to determine the relative value of pages on a website.

However, there are also some common mistakes website owners make with internal links that can hamper a site. These errors prevent pages from effectively passing link equity and signals like authority and trust.

Well! before we start let’s first understand why it is important to fix internal linking mistakes.

Why Is It Important to Fix Internal Linking Mistakes?

Fixing internal linking mistakes is important for several key reasons:

1. Search Engine Understanding

  • Internal links serve as road signs, directing search engines such as Google through your website’s structure.
  • When there are problems in internal linking, Google may become confused and unable to understand how your sites relate to each other.
  • Proper internal linking allows Google bots to effortlessly browse your site, discover new pages, and spread page authority effectively.

2. Improves User Experience

  • Broken internal links, as well as links to irrelevant or low-value information, lead to a poor user experience. Fixing these issues makes it easier for website users to access relevant information.

3. Redirects Link Equity

  • Any high-quality pages with defective inbound internal links will lose their link equity/authority. Fixing linking helps to allocate equity to the appropriate pages.

4. Communicate the Proper Page Structure

  • A clear internal link structure tells search engines which pages are pillars and which reinforce pillars deeper in the hierarchy.
  • This can affect ranking success.

Internal Linking Mistakes to Avoid !


1. Improper Use of Anchor text

Anchor texts are an important component of link building, whether external or internal. Simply put, anchor text is a clickable text that links to another page.

Relevant and detailed anchor text can enhance the user experience. Because it makes navigation more intuitive and efficient by indicating exactly what the user will see if they click through to the page.

It also makes it easier for search engine bots to grasp what each page is about and how they relate to one another. However, inappropriate anchor text can be damaging.

Here are some possible errors you could be making with anchor text for your internal links:

  • Keyword stuffing: Adding too many keywords to anchor text, especially if they don’t fit naturally, makes links appear fake and spammy.
  • Non-descriptive anchor text: Using vague phrases like “click here” or “read more” does not provide users or search engines a clear sense of the target page.
  • Forced and unnatural wording: Creating unpleasant anchor text, out of context, or grammatically incorrect to contain particular keywords will not do you any favors.

How to Fix it?

To avoid making this mistake, use explained and informative anchor text that’s related to the linked page’s topic and keyword, rather than generic or unclear phrases like “click here” or “read more“.

2. Broken Internal Links

internal links

Finding a broken link might be one of the most worsening aspects of visiting a website. A broken link may cost you business, whether they are attempting to buy a product or learn more about your company.

Also, having too many broken links at once could harm your search engine ranking and make it difficult for new users to find your site.

A website with broken internal links may cause a variety of issues. The problem can make it difficult for users to navigate the site. Next, it can block search engines from indexing the entire site’s content.

Moreover, it can result in a loss of PageRank and visibility in search results. All of these issues can be prevented by doing regular checks for broken internal links and repairing them as soon as they are discovered.

How to Fix it?

To avoid making this mistake, link to pages that are closely related to the topic, keyword, and user intent of your page, and monitor and fix any broken links on your website regularly.

3. Too Many or Too Few Links on a Page

One of the most common mistakes related to internal linking is having too many or too few links on a page. For starters, including too many internal links in a piece of content makes your page appear spammy, especially if they’re keyword-stuffed. 

To maximize the benefits of internal linking, SEOs and webmasters frequently overdo it. And there are many drawbacks to it.

  • Overlinking also makes it more difficult for search engines to understand your site’s structure and page hierarchy.
  • This means Google will have more difficulty crawling and indexing your website.
  • This can result in lesser (or no) presence in search results and less organic visitors.
  • Also, too few links could restrict your website’s crawlability and indexability, reduce opportunities to direct viewers to appropriate content, and lower engagement and retention rates.

How to fix it?

To avoid using too many links, keep the number of internal links in each paragraph to two or three. Also, verify that the links are relevant to the paragraph’s content and point to high-quality sources with extra information about the topic. This will help maintain the flow of your writing while also giving useful links to similar sites.

To avoid using too few links, aim for a balanced and natural number of links based on the length and topic of your page, user intent, and link value.

4. Choosing the Wrong Pages for Linking


The strategic aspect of developing an internal link strategy is determining which pages to link. To manipulate rankings ethically, the simplest approach is to generate several internal links for the one website you want to rank high. Most marketers use various anchor texts to connect to the same page. While this appears to be the greatest solution, it may be useless.

How to fix it?

The greatest solution is to use content hubs. They’ll take out the guesswork, allowing you to construct internal linkages only where they make sense. 

Always remember that internal linking is based on relevancy. To improve your SEO, the content you’re connecting to must be relevant to the source page.

5. Using Links With No-follow Attributes

Links have two attributes: follow and no-follow. In simple terms, the “follow” attribute allows search engines to crawl through the linked website, while the “no-follow” attribute indicates otherwise. A no-follow attribute essentially instructs search engines to ignore the given link.

So, if your internal links include the rel=nofollow tag, you are actively preventing them from finding your pages. This will naturally reduce your website’s authority and prevent the new pages from ranking in search results. To effectively use them, you must also consider the do-follow: no-follow ratio. According to Google’s standards, no-follow attributes result in the removal of target links from the web.

How to fix it?

Make sure your internal links are dofollow so that authoritative pages can send link value down to fewer pages. 

If you’re not sure if your links are dofollow, right-click on a content page and choose “view page source”. Next, use CTRL + F to discover internal links with “nofollow” characteristics. (Note: The phrase “dofollow” simply refers to a link that is not designated as “nofollow”. Default’s links are “dofollow”. No specific parameter is required.

6. Redirect Chains and Loops


Redirects are the events that move you from one page to another. Redirects can cause loops, slow down your website, and confuse search engines. It is a way of sending website visitors and search engines to a URL or webpage other than the one they originally requested. It’s similar to rerouting traffic to a different destination.

Creating redirects from one page to another can be handy. However, when done incorrectly, it severely degrades the user experience and can harm your rankings. 

  • Long redirect chains might slow down your website and use crawling resources. This can result in crawlability and indexability concerns.
  • Sometimes that chain ends up looping back on itself.
  • For example, suppose URL X redirects to URL Y and URL Y redirects to URL X. 
  • This confuses search engine bots and delivers a bad user experience because it does not go to a specific location.
  • And you certainly don’t want to worsen those issues by putting internal links to them in your article.

How to fix it?

Reduce the amount of redirects to as few as possible. Make sure to remove any 302 redirects as soon as their purpose is met and the target URL changes. 

7. Overlooking the Orphaned Pages

If you leave a page on your website without any links to it, it is considered orphaned. Orphaned pages have minimal visibility and are difficult to find. The simple cause is an absence of links indicating their existence. Because these pages cannot be found, search engines naturally avoid crawling them.

Your website may also contain examples of orphaned pages. If you have previously created a page for services that you no longer offer, you will no longer have any links to that page. The same is true for any products that are no longer in stock but have their page; they are now orphaned, with no links connecting to them.   

How to fix it?

A site audit is the most basic solution to this problem.

  • Make a full list of all pages on your website.
  • Use a website crawler software such as SEMRush Bot or Screaming Frog.
  • Examine the results for pages with no inbound links. These are your orphan pages.
  • Conduct a periodic audit to identify and delete these pages. 

8. Excessive Crawl Depth


Crawl depth is the number of clicks required to navigate from your home page to another page. Crawl depth increases with the size of your content repository. However, the search engine associates the importance of your pages with their crawl depth. Pages that need fewer clicks are seen as more essential and receive greater weight in search results. 

So, as you create your internal link structure, keep your important content pages from departing too far away from the homepage or becoming buried in pagination. For example, if your cornerstone page the page you want to rank requires 5-10 clicks for people and search engines to obtain, it implies that the page is not very significant. 

Further, deep crawl depth causes unequal distribution of PageRank within your website, resulting in lower exposure for deeper but crucial sites. 

How to fix it?

To fix this problem, just increase the content pages displayed on your blog page. This brings your important pages closer to the main page, requiring fewer clicks. 

As your content collection expands and you use pagination, Bill suggests offering your most significant pages in additional places, such as your footer, sidebar, and even the main navigation menu, if it makes sense. 

9. No Hierarchy or Structure

Hierarchy and structure are important in SEO because they help search engines and users know the relationship and value of your pages, as well as how to navigate your site. No hierarchy or structure can harm your SEO performance by making your website appear flat and disorganized, reducing the authority and relevancy of your pages, and providing a terrible user experience. 

How to fix it?

To avoid this mistake, build a clear and logical hierarchy and structure for your links based on your website’s design, categories, and subcategories, and use breadcrumbs, menus, and sitemaps to make navigating easier.

10. Internal Linking via Header Tags


An article’s headings indicate something. If there is text immediately below a heading, it usually indicates that the heading pertains to that section. An internal link helps you understand the link’s content and the anchor text for a given page.

  • So, why would you include a link to a heading that is useful to search engines?
  • The reasoning for placing an internal link in a H2 tag does not improve it.
  • You are instructing search engines to crawl that link rather than the text underneath the heading.
  • Why confuse the function of headers, which help search engines figure out what the page is about?
  • If you have no other choice, do so; otherwise, leave the titles alone.

How to fix it?

Optimize headers so that they are relevant to the page. You can include internal links in the body text. Or maybe the images you use. But not in the headlines. This allows search bots to more simply index your sites and pass link equity. So you’ll improve your SEO.

11. Using Masked Links

Masked links are those that have been concealed or covered so that they look like other links. As the name implies, these are links that you don’t want your users to see. So you hide them using another link.

Here are some frequent reasons for concealing internal links:

  • Covering affiliate links
  • Shortening or improving linkages
  • Tracking clicks and other statistics.

And they are all over the internet. They can be found in emails, online documents, websites, and social networks. However, using masked links may result in your site being penalized.

Search engines consider them fraudulent. Users may resist clicking on them. As a result, it is ineffective for your SEO internal linking strategy.

However, it harms your website’s SEO. 

How to fix it?

Either avoid using masked links or explain what the link is about in the content. It will make search engines and users more likely to trust and follow your links. Otherwise, it could be harmful to your SEO strategy.

12. Keyword Stuffing Links for SEO

  • In SEO, the term “keyword stuffing” refers to the practice of cramming a webpage with so many terms that it is difficult to read.
  • One of the most important SEO advice is to avoid using too many keywords.
  • What’s worse than that is what? An abundance of hyperlinked keywords.
  • It’s twice as much for search engine algorithms to blacklist a website. 

How to fix it?

Links are for people, whereas content is for people. Put people first, rather than trying to discover every single anchor text and undertake internal linking for SEO purposes. Remember that you want to avoid alienating users or search engines by using keywords that aren’t relevant to the context of each page. 

13. Not Creating the Right Navigational links

  • Navigational links allow users to traverse the full website.
  • They construct the website’s menu by collecting all of the site’s pages.
  • While the navigation bar is an important component of any website, marketers frequently disregard it in their internal linking strategy.
  • Creating a link-heavy navigation bar is a typical mistake, as is failing to include all of the links.

How to fix it?

A parent-only style is the best method to create a navigation menu while keeping your internal linking goals in mind. This style allows you to link to the main parent pages as well as the child category pages to their corresponding parent sites. You should strive to develop an intuitive navigation bar that allows users to easily explore your website.

14. Linking To Irrelevant Pages

When creating internal links, make sure the page you’re linking to is related to the content on the page you’re linking from. This can be done by conducting keyword research and analyzing the main topics related to each page. It should not be included if the link does not improve the overall user experience or content of the page.

How to fix it?

Do not link to pages that are out of date or no longer exist; this can harm your SEO efforts. Ensuring that all internal links are useful and point to current pages can enhance the user experience and help your pages rank higher in search engine results.


Internal links are necessary for any website as they help search engines and users browse and understand your content. However, making these links takes thought and effort. Rushing the process or failing to understand the suggested steps may undermine the success of your internal linking strategy.

With a strong internal linking architecture, you may increase your website’s authority, exposure, and Google rankings, resulting in targeted visitors that can convert into paying customers. However, creating a good internal link structure needs several parts.

To avoid negative results, examine the above-mentioned mistakes when developing your strategy. Use these factors to your advantage when designing a logical and intuitive structure for your website.


1. Why are internal links important for SEO?

Search engines analyze internal links to determine which pages on your site are most important and how they relate conceptually. An effective internal link structure allows search bots to crawl and index your website more efficiently. It usually improves the user experience by making it easier to navigate the site.

2. How many internal links should you add on one page?

There is not a specific amount of internal links that should be present on a single page. Instead, focus on delivering relevant and useful links to improve the user experience. Avoid excessive linking, as it may appear spammy to both users and search engines.

3. What is an example of a good internal linking structure?

A good internal structure connects related pages logically, making it easier for users to access information. For example, essential product pages can be linked to related buying guides, tips, product specifications, and similar products. This ensures a consistent user flow.

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