SEOSEO Backlinks

What is the difference between a dofollow and nofollow backlink?

What is the difference between a dofollow and nofollow backlink?

Dofollow and nofollow are terms associated with backlinks, which are hyperlinks on one website that point to another website. These links are important for search engine optimization (SEO) and can influence a website’s search engine ranking.

Backlinks are very important for SEO. Backlinks signal to search engines that other websites consider your content to be valuable and relevant.

There are two types of backlinks: dofollow and nofollow.

Dofollow Backlink: A dofollow backlink is a hyperlink that allows search engines to follow it and pass on “link juice” to the linked website. Link juice refers to the authority or value that the linking website passes to the linked page. Dofollow backlinks are seen as endorsements from one website to another, indicating that the linked-to website is reputable and trustworthy. They contribute to improving the search engine ranking and visibility of the linked website. This means when search engine crawls a webpage with do-follow backlink, it will follow that link to the linked webpage. Then give it some of the link juice or authority from the linking page. This can help improve the linked page’s search engine rankings.

Nofollow Backlink: On the other hand, a nofollow backlink is a hyperlink that includes the “nofollow” attribute in its HTML code. This attribute tells search engines not to pass on link juice to the linked website. Nofollow links are typically used when a website doesn’t want to endorse the linked content or when the link is user-generated (e.g., comments, forum posts, sponsored content). They don’t directly contribute to the SEO value of the linked website. A no-follow backlink is a link that does not pass on any link juice or authority. When the search engine crawls to a webpage with a no-follow backlink, it will not follow that link to the linked webpage. This will not give it any of the link juice or authority from the linking page.

Read: What are backlinks and how do they affect SEO?

Below is a simplified textual representation of how “do-follow” and “no-follow” backlinks work for SEO:

Website A (Source) | -------- | | Do-Follow No-Follow Backlink Backlink | | Website B Website C (Target)


  • Website A is the source website that is linking out to other websites.
  • Do-Follow Backlink: A link from Website A to Website B with a “do-follow” attribute is essentially an endorsement. It passes SEO values (PageRank, authority, etc.) from Website A to Website B, helping Website B’s search engine ranking.
  • No-Follow Backlink: A link from Website A to Website C with a “no-follow” attribute tells search engines not to pass SEO value from Website A to Website C. It doesn’t contribute to Website C’s search engine ranking.

Keep in mind that this representation is simplified, and there are more nuances to how search engines interpret and treat different types of links. The actual implementation might involve HTML tags, such as the “rel” attribute, to indicate whether a link is “do-follow” or “no-follow.”

In a practical sense, webmasters and SEO professionals use the “do-follow” and “no-follow” attributes strategically to control the flow of link equity and ensure that their site’s reputation is maintained while linking to other websites.

In general, do follow backlinks are more valuable for SEO. It’s because they can help improve search engine rankings, while nofollow backlinks dont have direct impact on search engine rankings. However, both types of backlinks can still be valuable for driving traffic to your website and increasing your online visibility.

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