Digital Marketing

How to Use Internal and External Links in Your School's Blog Posts

June 19, 2019

Did you know that around 4.4 million blogs are published every day? Now that's a lot of content.

It’s no secret that with the amount of content being created online, it’s getting harder to find ways to make your school’s blog stand out from the crowd. You’ve probably got your school’s blog strategy running like a well-oiled machine, but what about your link building strategy?

Without a strong link building strategy, your school’s blog is going to have a hard time cutting through the noise. In this post, we’re going to walk you through how and when to use internal and external links in your blog posts to foster good SEO practices and improve your content ranking. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. First, let’s dive into defining what external and internal links are.

What’s an external link?

Simply put, an external link is a hyperlink that points to another domain, using descriptive keyword anchor text. So, say you’re writing a blog post for your school and decide to link out to content on another website -- this would be an external link (see what we did there?).

What’s an internal link?

An internal link, on the other hand, is exactly what it sounds like -- a hyperlink that points to another page on the same domain. So in this case, including a link to a previous blog post or to another page on your school’s website would be a prime example of an internal link in action.

Get your head around all of the key digital terms. Download our Digital Glossary for Schools.

Why do internal and external links matter?

Google rates the use of internal and external links in blog posts as one of its 3 most important factors for on-page content ranking -- those are some high stakes. So, if you want to increase your school’s ranking in Google and boost your blog's exposure, learning how and when to use external and internal links is key.

According to MOZ, external links are the most important source for ranking power. This is the case because when used correctly, external links point to high-quality, authoritative websites that rank highly and are known reliable sources of information. Let’s face it, no matter how well-written or researched your blog is, it’s impossible to have all the answers. So, it makes sense to use external links to help explore relevant content that supports your blog topic. By doing this, not only will you be providing a more engaging and educational experience for your reader, but you’ll also improve the credibility of your school's blog as a valuable content source.

Internal links, on the other hand, are best used to help visitors easily navigate your school’s website and reduce bounce rates. Best practice when it comes to using internal links in your blog post is to organically link to relevant blog content or pages on your website -- but make sure you don’t overdo it. Similar to external links, internal links should always be used with consideration to ensure they’re adding value to your audience.

Now that you know how to use internal links to enhance the reader’s experience, let’s talk about reducing bounce rates. Your ultimate goal should be to keep your audience engaged and on your website. Through internal links, you’ll encourage audiences to extend their average session time by exploring your website, learning more about your school community, and ultimately reducing your website’s bounce rate.

Now that you know what internal and external links are the the purpose they serve when it comes to SEO, here’s our top 3 Do’s and Don’ts of using them in your next school blog post.

Don’t

  • Flood your blog post with links -- this will only appear spammy
  • Include links to irrelevant or low-quality websites
  • Link out to gated content that requires your reader to provide their details to access it

Do

  • Include links that help to educate and engage your audience
  • Use clear and descriptive keyword anchor text for your links
  • Ensure links read naturally

 

If you’ve been blogging for a while and are in need of some fresh content ideas, be sure to check out our 20 new and creative blog topics for schools to shake things up!