When it comes down to improving Google search engine ranking, I bet we all will do what it takes to get on that coveted first page or better yet, #1 spot.
What we'll be talking about here today doesn't require much effort (although might require some technical expertise), but can have a great impact on your search engine placement.
FIRST LINK PRIORITY.
Defining First Link Priority
The first link that a search engine spider sees in your web page's code is the link that it gives the MOST WEIGHT TO.
That means that if your pages have a link in their top set of navigation (like a set of tabs that lead to your home page, or “contact us” page, or “about us” page, etc.) and those links are the FIRST LINKS that the search engine spider sees…
…those links, and their ANCHOR TEXT (the words that give the pages they point to their “Reputation”) will have the MOST POWER.
As you can see from the image, both Link 1 and Link 2 are one and the same link going to Page B.
The first link is an image though that doesn't / can't contain any anchor text.
So according to first link priority theory, Link A will count and WILL pass the link juice, BUT without any anchor text. However, the second anchor-text-rich link won't count at all.
What does that mean to you?
- What if the tabs at the top of your page says “Home“? Is that what you'd like to see your Home Page ranked for?
- What if your right-handed navigation has short phrases or single words that lead to your sub-pages? Are those single words what you want your sub-pages to rank for?
- If you're using Footer links on your site to help funnel Link Reputation, those footer links are playing second fiddle to the links at the top of the page.
How to Put Theory into Practice
The best explanation on how to make sure your first link is the most important one with your chosen anchor text I found on, once again, Market Samurai blog, NobleSamurai.com.
In the video, Ben Strickland goes through the two step process of addressing First Link Priority issue:
1. How to identify which pages have the problem.
2. How to fix it.
Will it improve your Google rankings?
This section of the post is for those avid SEO bloggers who are already starting to bombard me with “But, Ana…” Make sure you tell me what you think in comments!
Let's start with Matt Cutts' video where he simply states (paraphrased) – “Forget about it.” (Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6uRKvnrsnE)
As usual, when Matt Cutts says something, especially on a contradictory topic, I take it with a grain of salt. This is one of those cases.
Then there was a conversation on Debra Mastaler's blog when she called Matt Cutts to the “batphone” over multiple links on the same page.
Her question was: Does Google only pass link popularity through the first anchor text link (on a page) it comes across?
Matt replied twice, the first time saying:
Dudibob, no, I confirmed the converse: if the anchortext is the same, we’ll typically drop the second link.
This is the sort of thing where people can run experiments to see whether different anchortexts flow in various ways.
Trust me, there are many blogs that support First Link Priority theory (just Google the topic, if in doubt), conducted test to prove it works (for instance, this one), and I am convinced this is something I need and will do for Traffic Generation Cafe.
By the way, this is what my home page looks like with CSS disabled:
As you can see, my home page does need help!
As for me, I am fixing it.
As for you, you tell me – below in the comments.
Image source: http://randomthoughtsbychris.blogspot.com/