NOFollow links

What are NOFollow links? Do Your Site Really Needs Them?

If you are a Digital Marketer or an SEO then you must have often heard about the rel=”Nofollow” or rel=”sponsored” tag many times.

In this post, I am going to tell you that Do Your Site needs No-Follow Links and When to apply a rel=”Nofollow” tag while linking to other resources.

What are Nofollow or Sponsered Links

As the name suggests ‘Nofollow’ means don’t follow, it tells search engines to not follow the link or don’t allow these kinds of links to pass the link juice.

No-follow links were launched in 2005 by Google to avoid spammy Black-Hat SEO links, for example:- Social comment links.

No-follow links give a signal to search engines “not to follow this link” or in easy words “ignore this link”

These links don’t pass the link juice, now you’ll be thinking that No-follow backlinks don’t affect SEO, but according to me they do, Later in this post, I am going to tell you the same.

Difference Between Do-follow and No-follow Links

The only difference between do-follow and No-follow links is that -no-follow links contain a no-follow tag.

Dofollow Link<a href=””>
Nofollow Link<a href=”” rel=”nofollow”>

There’s one more difference between Nofollow link and Dofollow Link that Dofollow Links pass the Link Juice while Nofollow Links don’t.

But, as user or reader there’s no difference between them, if you link out to then the reader will reach whether the link is Dofollow or Nofollow.

According to Google, Nofollow links don’t pass the page rank means it will not increase your rankings.

In Link building, That’s why you always want to get a do to follow link whenever it is possible.

Why Nofollow Links were Launched

During 2003 and 2004 Spammers copy and past their website’s links on comments of high authority websites, this gave them many high-quality backlinks.

In Results, Spammers started ranking higher and higher than Sites with quality content or sites who didn’t spam.

So, To rank the best results high and avoid these spammers, google launched the Nofollow link attribute.

Eventually, Other search engines like Bing, Yahoo, etc adopted the same technique.

What Types of Links are Nofollow

A link with rel=”nofollow” or rel=”ugc” or rel=” sponsored” attribute is said to be a no-follow link.

But, in most of the cases, inbound links from these kinds of sources are most probably to be no-follow:-

  • Social/Blog Comments
  • Social Media (Example:- Tweets)
  • Forums
  • Links to fewer authority websites (some sites add a no-follow attribute to sites with less authority)

In easy words, No follow link is added to USG (Users Generated Content) kind of resources.

Here are some popular sites which always uses Nofollow Links:-

  • Reddit
  • Google
  • Quora
  • Medium
  • Youtube
  • Wikipedia

Also, Paid links get a nofollow attribute.

According to Google, the links that you get paid for should be no-follow else you might get a penalty from google.

Do Nofollow Links Helps You To Rank

Most of the people say that Nofollow links don’t impact your rankings but most of the people say that Nofollow links impact your rankings but a little, and I am one of them.

Here’s one experiment that was done by the Head of SEO at Survey Monkeys.

He made his mind to get an answer to the question ‘Does Google Follows Nofollow links’

To do that he made a few no-follow backlinks of 404 pages (a page that was not indexed) on his website and found that Google indexed his 404 pages.

If we talk about what Google said, then the link should be ignored by it.

This means that we should not do all our work based on Google because Google will never reveal its factors to rank a page number one.

According to a case study done by ahref Dofollow links and Nofollow links have the same impact on rankings the way Do-follow links impact.

Also, In Google Webmasters Recent QnA John Mueller said that They use No follow links as a hint for SEO.

Advantages of No Follow Links

Here are some advantages of getting No-follow links from other sites pointing to your site.


As you earlier read that do-follow links and no-follow links have almost the same impact on rankings.

Builds Authority/Builds a Brand

Your site got referred on one other site, now people will get to know about your site. This Builds your brand or authority.

Sends you traffic

As I earlier told that it builds your brand and brand means traffic.

Ways to get traffic to your site with No-follow Links

Here are some ways from which you can get a lot of traffic from a no-follow link.

No-follow link from Social Media

I post tweets on twitter and I get a no-follow link from that site but that single tweet generates a lot of traffic to my site.

Social media can generate a huge amount of specific traffic.

No-follow link from a Comment

Comment links can really send traffic, but the main thing is that your comment should not look spammy.

You should write a comment related to the post and paste the URL of one of your posts related to the topic of the article you are commenting on.

Tip: Comment on Blog post on the same topic you have written a blogpost

You can write a comment like this:

Nice article, I liked the (piece of content you liked) but I was searching for (the topic you don’t find in the article) which was the most important according to me. Well, I later searched for the topic and find an article (Your blogpost) This article fullfilled my need. Your article is also great but I think that (the topic you don’t find in the article) must be in your article.

This type of comment on other relevant sites can not only give you a backlink but it can even generate your traffic because people searching for the topic you covered will click on your link and will become your website’s visitor.

This Technique Really works.

A no-follow link can get you a do-follow link

As I earlier told you that it builds your brand, and branding can help you get a do-follow link.

Because now people know about your site and they visited your site too and if they find your article useful (worthy of linking) They will link out to your article.

Links simply means spreading your site across the web.

Do your site actually needs No-follow links? / Should you create No-follow Backlinks?

Now, we have learned a lot about No follow links but now you’ll be thinking that Should you have/build/make No-follow backlinks or do your site really needs them.

Here’s an answer.

In my 4 years of blogging experience what  I found is that building no-follow links affect SEO and tells the search engines that your brand is spreading.

This means that you should build no-follow links.

But, here’s a twist, I created one website related to Husky dogs and I build all no-follow links for that website.

I got almost 500 no-follow links from 456 different domains.

This started my website to rank but its spam score increased in the speed of light.

My spam score was 85% and I thought that I could soon get penalized by google so I stopped working on that site.

Bottom Line

No follow links have several benefits but they building all no-follow links increases your spam score.

They have almost the same impact Do-follow links have on rankings.

You should not create all No-follow links, I like the ratio of 40% No follow links and 60% Do-follow links.


About the author

Aaditya Sharma is the founder of Exblogging, Aaditya Sharma is a Blogger, Digital Marketer and en Entrepreneur who specializes in SEO, Affiliate Marketing and Content Marketing. He Likes earning money online and has many sources of income.

One Reply to “What are NOFollow links? Do Your Site Really Needs Them?”

  1. SEO is now giving some limited juice on your no-follow links. I have found that clicking my website on a directory listing is helping me for local SEO

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