In the past, some search engine optimisation companies have have frowned upon inbound deep links to pages of a site that aren’t the homepage or another top-level page. It was felt by some that deep linking causes visitors to bypass the site’s main advertising or branding page. Another negative opinion was that visitors are likely to interpret the linked page as part of the website that linked to it.
Despite this dwindling mentality towards deep links, they can actually be really good for a website. Below are some benefits seen by a website with deep inbound links.
One of the first things to learn about optimizing your website is that inbound links can boost the site’s search engine rankings quite considerably. Simply put, the more high-authority sites that link your way, the higher your site will appear in search results. Rankings can be improve even more significantly if the other sites are linking to a variety of your site’s inside pages, not just your home page. This indicates to the search engines that the content throughout your site is worthwhile and Google and the other search engines will reward your site by improving your results in the search pages.
If deep linking can increase your site's search engine ranking, it’s fairly obvious that this will increase your site’s traffic too. The higher your site appears in search results, the more people will see your listings, and the more people will click to visit it. Visitors who have found your website through a deep link are far more likely to return than those who find the site through a generic link to your home page. This is because a deep link is more targeted to the information the page contains, hopefully more likely to take visitors directly to what they are looking for. For example, if an online article or blog mentions the new type of widget your shop sells, you will be better served by a link directly to a page featuring the yellow widget rather than your website's homepage. People are more likely to return to your site if they find what they are looking for straight away.
If more of your web pages get inbound links, then more of your pages will get listed by the search engines. This allows for many more keyword opportunities for your website. Instead of trying to cram all of your keywords into your home page, you can target different keyword groups on different pages. Going back to our example, your main keywords for a page about yellow widgets might be “yellow widgets”, “buy yellow widgets”, “yellow widgets sale,” and so on. Ideally, for each different product page you have different target keywords reflected in your deep links.
Company blogs have become a common way to engage and interact with visitors and increase site traffic. Unfortunately, many older blog entries can get buried within the site and are never viewed again. Why not revive the old posts by deep linking to them in your newer blog posts. If you are writing a new blog post about something relevant to a post from the past, simply add a link to it. You never know, a reader might click on the link and read your old post, maybe even adding a link to it himself. It is not uncommon for a good blog post to become popular several months or even years after it was originally published. Also consider keeping older posts alive by publishing a monthly summary of the previous month’s top posts with links to each of them.
Without incoming deep links, people may rarely get beyond your homepage. Your site may have some really good content but people need an easy way of getting to it. By using deep links, visitors have a fairly effortless way of reaching your various internal pages. Once you have obtained a substantial number of deep links and seen an increase in site traffic, you can start to benef from an analytics tool. You will be able to establish where your traffic is coming from, which pages are visited the most, and which pages people spend the most time on. Understanding this will help determine which of your pages are most appealing to readers or customers, and which can be improved upon. Determine which techniques attract visitors and implement those methods on other pages.