DoFollow Or NoFollow? That Is The Question

DoFollow or NoFollow
Image courtesy of Master isolated images /

Have you ever thought about how search engines crawl your blog or website? Probably not, me neither. What are DoFollow or Nofollow links?

It wasn’t something I’d thought about until recently and then I started looking into it.

I’m sure you know that search engines have bots that crawl your site but did you know there’s a quota for how much they will search your links?

So it would make sense to make sure they definitely crawl the most important pages on your blog, wouldn’t it?

You don’t want to be leaking link juice all over the place after all. By default, any links in the comments on WordPress are set up as NoFollow.

Although, you can use a WordPress plugin to make them DoFollow if you want to.

What’s this DoFollow and NoFollow all about then?

To combat spam comments and links, Google set up the NoFollow tag (rel=”nofollow”).

It’s designed to prevent Google bots from crawling any links spammers have added to their comments.

Here’s an example of how to set up a NoFollow link:

<a href=”” rel=”nofollow”>My Blog</a>

Any link which doesn’t have the NoFollow tag added to it is a DoFollow link. There isn’t a corresponding DoFollow tag.

Whilst DoFollow links are acknowledged and crawled by search engines, NoFollow links generally aren’t.

Allowing DoFollow links can have its advantages and disadvantages. It’s a question of whether the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.

Advantages of DoFollow

  • The idea behind having DoFollow links in your comments is to encourage more of them and to give visitors the opportunity to generate backlinks to their blogs.
  • DoFollow blogs tend to attract visitors to your blog out of curiosity, which gives a boost in traffic.
  • It sometimes encourages people to share posts on social networks.

Disadvantages of DoFollow

  • Spammers love DoFollow links and I’m getting more and more of them trying to add a link and I’m spending more time moderating comments.
  • With all the DoFollow links going elsewhere, it could be diluting the authority of my blog.

So what does Google have to say about DoFollow comments? Here’s a short video from Matt Cutts which gives some insight into this.

For me, there’s a few things to consider but I’m keen to keep my blog DoFollow as I think the benefits of increased visitors and more interaction outweigh the negatives.

The amount of spam comments I am receiving has increased over the past few months but with the way I have WordPress set up I can intercept them.

I always require the first comment to be approved before it will appear on my blog. That way, I can moderate things without too much hassle for me or the commenter. After that, any further comments are automatically approved.

It isn’t foolproof but it weeds a lot of the comment spammers out, along with Akismet and GASP.

When is it essential to use NoFollow links?

Google gives some advice on how and when to use NoFollow links on Webmaster Tools, which includes another video from Matt Cutts on the subject.

In particular, Google give specific examples where NoFollow links might be used.

  • Untrusted content: If you don’t trust a particular link in a comment or just don’t want Google to follow the link;
  • Paid Links: If you have affiliate links on your site, Google urge you to make them NoFollow;
  • Crawl Prioritization: If you still have the login link to WordPress on your blog, make this NoFollow and consider removing altogether as this is a security risk.

Amendment – 20 March 2013: I looked into this further following a comment from my friend, Theodore, and WordPress automatically make the Admin and Login links NoFollow if you use the Meta widget. All of the other links on the widget are still DoFollow though (RSS entries and the link to

To allow Google to crawl other more interesting links on your page, I would also suggest making any links to social media sites NoFollow and if you’re able to, any links to subscribe to your newsletter or email list.

So, over the past few days, I’ve spent my time:

  • Auditing all the comments on my blog and removing links to untrusted content;
  • Making the affiliate links on my blog NoFollow;
  • All links to social media sites are now also NoFollow.

Now, over to you… Is your blog a DoFollow or a NoFollow blog? Can you think of any other advantages or disadvantages of using DoFollow links? Do you make your affiliate links and social media links NoFollow? What other ways do you control how Google bots crawl your site?

I’m really interested to know your thoughts on this and I’d love it if you would leave a comment below to let me know.

P.S. Please share this post with all of your friends if you’re feeling social Smile!

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  1. says

    Tim, very interesting, I have my comments as DoFollow, that’s why many may comment – and I weed out the spam, not many with CommentLuv premium. I have set my affiliates to NoFollow as I had read about that a while back.
    But why NoFollow for social media Tim?

    • says

      Hi Lisa

      With GASP and Askimet enabled I don’t get too many spam comments either, with comments set to DoFollow on CommentLuv.

      There have been a few more recently but generally anyone without a Gravitar or not pointing to a blog will not get approved.

      Because I always approve the first comment that usually stops any spam comments leaking through.

      If I persistently get spam comments from the same person, I then add their email address to Comment Blacklist under the Discussion settings on WordPress.

      In terms of making social media widgets NoFollow, from what I’ve read, if you leave them as DoFollow these links are really bad at using up a lot of the search engine’s crawling budget for your site. In other words they are really bad for SEO.

      By making them NoFollow, Google can concentrate on crawling further into your blog from your home page and through your internal links.

  2. says

    Very informative post, Tim!
    You’ve so very clearly explained what a blogger not acquainted with these linking rules should do. Luckily I’ve a few techie friends online and I learned the important of DoFollow and NoFollow links early. Except the CommentLuv links, all links on my blog are NoFollow…and leaving out the internal links as well as they are all DoFollow. But one thing that I need to check are the social media links. Off I go to do that! Thanks. :)

    • says

      Hi Harleena

      Welcome to my blog and thank you for some great comments.

      It’s great that you have some techie friends who’ve been there to guide you on the importance of DoFollow and NoFollow links. I had no idea about them really until recently.

      I’m the same as you in that all links on my blog are NoFollow apart from CommentLuv and the internal links. I’m sure a few of the older posts have a few stray links and I’ll need to find some time to rectify those at some point.

      The plugin I use for my social media widgets has the option to turn NoFollow links on. Maybe yours will have something similar if you use a plugin?

      Great to see you Harleena and I hope you’ll come back and visit soon.


      • says

        Tim, you can use a plugin to make all your external links as NoFollow. I use “External Links” so I do not have to spend time finding those links and worry about putting a rel=nofollow unless the code is inside a widget.

  3. Sapna says

    HI Tim,

    Great share!

    After reading your post I’m going to convert my Commenluv “no follow” links to “do follow” for sure. I was just looking to prevent the blog from SPAM but I think that is preventing more interaction on my blog.

    Thanks TIm for bringing that to notice.


    • says

      Hi Sapna

      I know I certainly get more comments with having CommentLuv links as DoFollow.

      GASP and Askimet tend to keep the spammers at bay mostly but any that do get through I moderate in any case.

      Hopefully you won’t see a huge increase in spam comments and you’ll get loads more interaction.

  4. Annie André says

    Good post Tim. You make a good point about how having DOFOLLOW links in your comments boosts traffic. I have it set to NOFOLLow because of all the damn freaking spam i was getting. In fact, i’m going to head over to my blog and change the links to dofollow on comments and see what happens. I’m trying to reach the 100K or less point on Alexa and maybe this will push me over the edge. :)

    I have a new idea for your next post. I recently was seeing spikes in my cpu usage despite traffic being normal, despite being on a CDN, despite having my page cached and despite it all I was getting these weird spikes that was shutting down my server. I checked my logs and found out that my site was getting scraped by bots. You should check your logs for unwanted bots every once in a while and block them. Maybe you should write about it. I’m sure lots of people don’t know this is happening under their blogs.
    Have a great week and get to work.

    • says

      Hey Annie

      Hopefully you won’t get too many spam comments when you change to DoFollow. If you find that you are, you could always change it back.

      GASP and Askimet are doing a relatively good job at keeping them at bay for me but I don’t get anywhere near the traffic you get.

      My Alexa rank has gone down by 20,000 over the past few weeks since I stopped commenting on so many blogs and being everywhere on social media.

      It was needed to keep insanity away! I just couldn’t keep up with everything.

      Another great idea for a post Annie. I will get around to them eventually! I need to go and check my logs and see what’s going on to.

      I’d never have thought of scraping bots but it sounds as if they can cause a bit of a problem.

      Thanks for the heads up and I seriously do need to get some work done. I’ve been quite lazy!

      Enjoy the rest of your week.

  5. says

    Hi Tim

    That was interesting. I have just been listening to a webinar that maintained even “No follow” links have some value, because they increase link diversity, and show you’re not just chasing after dofollow links.

    I THINK I’ve just set my comments to dofollow (in the CommentLuv main section? anywhere else?) also I don’t know how to tell if comments I am leaving are dofollow!


    • says

      Hi Joy

      I definitely agree that NoFollow links also hold some value and not just because of link diversity.

      Even if the blog you are commenting on has CommentLuv links set to NoFollow, if you have an interesting post title, people are going to click on your link.

      To set the CommentLuv links to DoFollow, there are tick boxes under CommentLuv Settings in the section headed ‘Enticements for 10 posts and dofollow’.

      The easiest way I’ve found to check if the CommentLuv links on the comments you’re leaving on blogs are NoFollow or DoFollow is to use the MozBar.

      It’s an SEO toolbar from SEOMoz which you can install for Firefox or Chrome.

      One of the options is a highlight function which shows NoFollow links on the page you are currently viewing in red. Give me a shout if you need any help with it.

      Another alternative is to check the page source for “rel=”nofollow”>” tags. I can explain that in more detail if you would like me too?

      I hope that helps Joy.

  6. Khaja Moin says

    Hi Tim,
    Though Matt Cutts suggested to use nofollow for aff. & sponsored links, I see many bloggers who don`t want to rely on Google using dofollow. Best example is Bary of
    Anyway I too use nofollow for aff links. Never tried sponsored links.
    Hey Tim, will you give a dofollow link if any advertiser contacts you?


    • says

      Hey Khaja

      I’m not sure I know what you mean about people not wanting to rely on Google using DoFollow? The majority of links on the internet are DoFollow, are they not?

      Do you mean they want to get their traffic from other sources other than Google?

      If an advertiser contacted me and asked for a DoFollow link, I would certainly consider their request. It would depend on what they were promoting and the landing page, I think.

      • khaja moin says

        Giving dofollow link is against Google`s policy.
        But I see many acting against it. Because they`re not concerned about Google. As they get more referral traffic than search.


  7. Theodore Nwangene says

    Hi Tim,
    Its quite unfortunate that we can’t stop those spammers, i also get loads of it all the time which usually leads to more work.

    The only reason why i allow the do follow thing is just to give commenters some credit just as you stated here.

    One thing i don’t fully understand here is this……Crawl Prioritization: If you still have the login link to WordPress on your blog, make this NoFollow and consider removing altogether as this is a security risk.

    And how do you make your social shares NOFOLLOW.

    Thanks for always sharing helpful tips man. Happy new week

    • says

      Hey Theodore

      With CommentLuv Premium, I don’t tend to get as many spam comments as I used to. That’s with GASP and Askimet enabled.

      Recently I’ve been stopping any comments coming through that are directly to sales pages but I may start letting them through and removing the CommentLuv link or DoFollow.

      Sorry if I confused you about the login link. All I meant here was that some people have the Meta widget active on their sidebar, which has Site Admin, Login and RSS links.

      You don’t really want those links to show up in Google search, so making them NoFollow would stop this. I just checked though and WordPress make these NoFollow by default so I’ll change my post to reflect this.

      The other issue of having this on your blog is that potentially you’re going to get more malicious attacks on your blog as people will know you’re using WordPress.

      It’s not a huge security risk because people will work out you’re using WordPress in any case.

      For my social media widget, I have an option within the widget to turn all the links to NoFollow. Do you have this on yours? If not, you’ll need to amend the code which may not be so easy.

      I hope you enjoy the rest of the week Theodore.

  8. says

    Hey Tim,

    I haven’t given this much thought, but I know it’s an important topic. I used to have NoFollow, because I thought that it was the best way to get traffic from Google (and not get as many spammers). But, at the moment, since I didn’t see any effect of the NoFollow, I have set my blog to DoFollow. I get spam comments every day, but CommentLuv are stopping most of them, so it’s not really a problem :)

    • says

      Hey Jens

      My CommentLuv has always been set to DoFollow and I’ve never experimented with setting it to NoFollow. I’m not sure what would happen! Maybe less comments.

      I do have quite a few spam comments coming through with the DoFollow enabled but like you CommentLuv is stopping most of them so it’s not so bad!

  9. says

    Hi Tim

    I have the same question as Theodore. Also when I put in rel=”nofollow” it put a the code outside the banner. Then I went to Google and copied and put in front of <img and it worked…well it least it remained inside the banner. Does this serve the same function? I have just started on this for one site.

    Thanks for the information and will look forward to your answers.


    • says

      Hi Mary

      I’m not sure what you mean about it putting code outside the banner. The rel=”nofollow” needs to go after the link and before the closing >.

      Could you give me an example please where it’s putting code outside the banner?

      Hopefully then I’ll be able to help.

      • says

        Hi Tim

        The banner I was referring to was the banner on the widgets. It would drop the code above the widget or the widget would not even show. For link words I put it between these somewhere using Google’s meta robot content rel=nofollow. When I copied the code in the comment it wiped it out. But I found it on their Webmaster Tools, so I am assuming it is correct enough to work. I hope so because I spent a day and a half going through all my links and widgets.


        • says

          Hi Mary

          I get what you mean now. Sorry about that!

          The rel=”no follow” needs to be after the link and before the closing >.

          It sounds as if you got it sorted out in the end in any case but if you need any help, please let me know.


  10. says

    do follow is the sense which link provide the positive sense in the google crawl.while no follow opposite do the large building make both but positive think do follow .

    • says

      Hi Anil

      I agree that using DoFollow is positive, my only concern is whether it’s taking page rank away from my own blog.

      I just tried a plugin to change all of the external links to NoFollow apart from CommentLuv but it messed up my social media icons.

      I’ll maybe try a different plugin to see if that works.

  11. chamal says

    Hi tim,
    i think if there are spammers looking at dofollow is traffic boosting plugin. Because,your website’s link are on other blogs too.You can use spam blocking plugin.if blog biginner got commentLuv for his website,his web site’s visitors will be increased…

    • says

      Hi Chamal

      Welcome to my blog and thank you for your comments.

      I hope by using DoFollow that it does bring more traffic to my blog. I’d rather not get lots of spam comments though.

      I do use Akismet and GASP to keep them at bay and that mostly does the trick though.

  12. says

    Hi Tim
    Sorry I have not been around much, have been going through some personal stuff but I am slowly getting better :)
    I am a lover of dofollow and because I have akismet I do not get too many spam it’s not a problem.
    Hope you have a great day

    • says

      Hi Pauline

      No problem that you’ve not been around. I hope everything is ok. It sounds as if you’ve not had en easy time of it just lately.

      I’ve not been around too much either since I slowed down on the blog-hopping and commenting. It was getting to be too much!

      It’s great that you’re a lover of DoFollow too Pauline. I hope it brings us lots more visitors in the future and none of that spam :-).

      Not long to go until the weekend. I hope you have a good one.


  13. says

    Most of the links on my blog are do-follow even social links and of course comment love too. After reading this I am thinking to turn them no-follow

    • says

      Hi Ansh

      Welcome to my blog and thank you for your comments.

      I’ve kept my CommentLuv links as DoFollow but everything else is going to be NoFollow. I’m trying to find a plugin to do this which won’t conflict with other plugins I have active.

      There are some older links which are still DoFollow so they will then be picked up too.

      Hopefully then the Google bots will stay on my blog longer rather than leaving my blog and crawling other sites!

      Have a great weekend Ansh and I hope you’ll come and visit again soon.


  14. Dan Black says

    Hello Tim,

    You wrote about some good stuff here. I still need to add the “CommentLuv” feature on my blog, I think it was you who suggested it to me. I plan on doing it in the near future. I don’t moderate my comments but if someone spams me I delete the comment and Red flag them.

    • says

      Hi Dan

      Thank you. CommentLuv is my favourite plugin and the majority of links from CommentLuv links on my are DoFollow.

      I have my blog set up so that I always moderate the first comment but after that they automatically get approved.

      I go through all of the comments and moderate the CommentLuv link because sometimes the links are to a sales. I even remove the link sometimes if it’s going to an unsuitable site.

      You should definitely give CommentLuv a go Dan. The free version is great and the premium version has 8 or so plugins in one!

      • Dan Black says

        Your welcome. I make sure to keep my eye open for spammers and make sure I delete the comment when they do leave one. Dang spammers.

        Keep writing great content Tim!

        • says

          I just removed Askimet because I forgot you need to pay a subscription if you aren’t using it for a personal website.

          I hope that the GASP plugin on CommentLuv will still keep all the spam at bay. I have every faith it will!

  15. says

    Hi Tim,

    Informative post mate :) Not everyone knows about this and if someone was seeking ways to grab more link juice, I’m sure they are aware of the difference.

    Obviously dofollow attracts more comments for your blog as bloggers love to find a dofollow enabled blogs :) As you know, spammers are always out there to bug you. But fortunately the anti-spam tools are serving better in catching spams.

    As I know, by default, blogging platforms specify nofollow for links. I find another disadvantage using dofollow too Tim. It’s not obvious, but can happen.

    Lot of people seeking for dofollow blogs and publish on directories and blogs. You know, “500 do-follow blogs to comment on” 😉 So if you are fortunate enough to get attention, your blog will be mentioned in other blogs automatically and get more visitors to your blog too. The problem is if your blog mentioned in spammy blogs or websites. You might notice when you find PageRank drop. So keep an eye on backlinks to your site via Webmaster Tools and see where your visitors coming from :)


    • says

      Hi Mayura

      I’ve had quite a few spam comments lately but they’ve all been stopped by GASP and Akismet luckily.

      I’d not thought about being included in directories and blogs because I’m a DoFollow blog but you’re right, there’s quite a few of those lists out there.

      Thanks for the heads up to check Google Webmaster Tools. I rarely go a look but I really do need to go there more often.

      I’ve now set up a preferred domain and a 301 redirect. I used a plugin to do the redirect but I wanted to try a different plugin so I removed it.

      When I tried to add the 301 redirect in the new plugin I got a 500 error because it said the 301 redirect was already in place.

      I assumed it would have been removed when I deleted the previous plugin.

      Do you know if you set a preferred domain whether Google automatically do a 301 redirect? I doubt it but I can’t see anything in my database as to why it would still be in place once the plugin was deleted.

      • says

        Hi Tim,

        From where you did 301 redirects mate? :) If it’s from www version, I can see it already working mate :)

        Actually Google is not responsible for setting up redirect, ’cause redirection is happening on your domain or subdomain Tim. Domain registrar is the one responsible for that :) May be the plugin made necessary changes already for you.

        If you wanna confirm, try Fetch as Google tool in GWMT for the domain and see if it’s being redirected successfully :)

        By setting preferred domain, Google will treat both www and non-www version as the same. So you can find search results are originating from same place eventhough they are from different versions (www and non-www) of your domain Tim :)


        • says

          Hi Mayura

          I did the 301 redirect though a WordPress plugin called Simple 301 Redirects but then found a different plugin I wanted to use called Redirection. It was from www to non-www version.

          I deactivated and deleted the data for Simple 301 Redirects and assumed that would remove the 301 redirect.

          When I then activated the other plugin and put the 301 redirect on through the new plugin I got a 500 error so I took it off again.

          I’m guessing the original plugin has put some code somewhere into WordPress.

          It’s not a problem in any case as the redirect is in place anyway.

          It was just baffling me why that would be the case when I deleted it from the Simple 301 Redirects plugin.

          Thank you for your help Mayura!

          Have a great weekend.


  16. says

    Hi Tim, This is a very helpful article about a topic I’ve been considering for a while. I use CommentLuv and have a Do Follow blog. I get loads of spam comments every day but I use the Stop Spammers Registration plugin to search for the authenticity of the commenters.

    I figure I want to reward my commenters with Do Follow and also give them the link back with CommentLuv.

    Thanks so much for this very helpful and informative article!

    • says

      Hi Carolyn

      Thank you. That’s very kind of you to say!

      I’ve not heard of the Stop Spammer Registration plugin so that’s another plugin to have a look at. I get quite a few spam comments now and particularly pingbacks, so that will come in handy.

      I’m of the same opinion as you in that I also want to reward commenters with DoFollow although I’m sure that attracts a few of the wrong people purely for the link back!

      Great to see you Carolyn. Enjoy your weekend.


  17. says

    Hi Saanvi

    NoFollow links are important for variety in your backlinks so it’s definitely worth getting NoFollow links as well as DoFollow.

    It is all about giving value in your comments as you say and if you have an interesting headline that can always help too.

    Thank you for your comments Saanvi. Have a great weekend.

  18. says

    Oh dear, Tim – all this links business gives me a big headache and makes me want to go lie down in a darkened room. I have links on the brain at the moment – broken ones, follow ones, nofollow ones – and a lot of it’s a mystery to my non-techie brain.

    Having been advised to check for broken links, I’ve discovered that I’ve got 3 broken urls, according to Google Webmaster tools, but I can’t for the life of me find out where they’re coming from, so I can’t fix them.

    As far as follow and nofollow goes, I’ve found your explanation of the coding very helpful and I’ve just added this to an Amazon affiliate link that I’m planning to include in my next post. I’m tempted to get that plugin Harleena’s mentioned, but won’t that affect our commentluv links? Also, there will surely be times when you want to give a dofollow link, maybe to another blog you mention in a post, and won’t it spoil that? Or am I not understanding something here? That’s quite possible, as you can no doubt tell from my confused and incoherent ramblings. As you can see, this is way, way outside my comfort zone – but I’m trying to get a grip!


    • says

      Hi Sue

      I’ve got a few broken links too on Google Webmaster tools and I’ve been slowly redirecting quite a few of them because I’d mispelt the link or changed it in someway. Others have appeared because I deleted a page and now the link is no longer there.

      I’m using the Redirection plugin to do it. It’s working well and all of the 301 redirects I’ve put in place have worked without any hitches.

      I’m glad you found the coding explanation helpful Sue. That makes me happy :-). I’m pleased you got it to work with the Amazon affiliate link.

      I tried using the plugin which Harleena mentioned but it interferes with my Twitter button so I had to delete it again. It would be really useful though so I may search for a different one.

      The plugin which Harleena mentions allows you to put in a code for any links that you want to be DoFollow if I remember, so any links in your posts and comments can be made DoFollow if you want them to be.

      I’m pretty sure the plugin doesn’t override CommentLuv but I didn’t test it to be honest. I got the impression from Harleena that it doesn’t though.

      I’m still away from home at the minute but when I get back, I’ll test it Sue and let you know.

      I hope you’re well Sue and enjoying the Easter weekend.


  19. says

    Hi Tim,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I think that a lot of changes have taken place since the video was shot and I think that Google will follow some links even when we label them nofollow.

    Right now, all my affiliate links are no follow.

    All the reference links from authority sites are do follow as Google likes to see that we are using as resources.

    I always mediate the comments and will check the sites where the links are coming from just to make sure they are not bad neighborhoods links. Thus far I have not seen any problems. I use only Akismet for spam and it seems to work very well for me.

    I have not changed the social links to no follow. Thanks for pointing it out.



    • says

      Hi Dita

      I’m sure you’re right that many things have changed with Google since the video but I thought it was still an important message about NoFollow.

      I remember reading somewhere that Google does follow some NoFollow links but in general the robots still don’t. They do it because they want to get an overall picture of your site I think.

      It’s a good point that Google wants to see the resources we are using. I tend to leave the reference links as DoFollow too, depending on the context of the link.

      In relation to Akismet, someone mentioned later in the comments that if you have paid links on your site that there is a charge for using Akismet and I had completely missed this.

      I’ve removed Akismet from my site now but as I have CommentLuv, I’m sure that the GASP plugin will catch any spam comments in any case.

      Thank you for your comments Dita and I hope to see you again soon.


  20. Lalita Bisht says

    Today, this is the first time I am here in your blog. As a new blogger I found this post very informative. Moreover after reading this article and going through the comments, I have got idea about how no follow and do follow links works and their consequence. Thanks.

    • says

      Hi Lalita

      I’m glad you found the article useful.

      It’s great that the people who comment here always provide so much value and I love that by having a discussion in the comments it extends the article’s theme even further.

      Thank you for your kind comments Lalita and I hope you have a great week.


  21. says

    Hey Tim,

    I just wrote a post about Google slapping me, again, and I have no idea why. I know that some have talked about “paid” links and I had a guy mention to me that CommentLuv links were paid links. I asked him in what Universe?

    This is one of the reasons I encourage people to get CommentLuv Premium because not only can you delete a link you aren’t sure about but you can also make others nofollow. Of course spammy comments will never be approved anyway but there are some links that I don’t mind being there but I’m not going to give them the love. My choice right!

    I also agree with the reason nofollow needs to be installed such as for affiliate links so that I do know and do as well. As Matt says, be careful what you approve and you’ll be just fine.

    Thanks for sharing this and sorry I’m late in getting by. Hope you’re doing well and have a great week.


    • says

      Hey Adrienne

      I’m sorry it’s taken me a while to reply to you.

      I’m currently on vacation and have been since last Monday but I’m now at my parent’s house down in England. I’ve sneaked a quick look at my blog from here!

      I’m sorry to hear that Google slapped you again. That does surprise me as your articles really do provide a great deal of value.

      I can’t imagine that it would be anything to do with CommentLuv though. Why on earth would that be considered paid links?

      I guess if every DoFollow link we approved went to a sales page then it could be considered that but as you point out, you can remove the DoFollow or get rid of the link entirely if you don’t think it’s suitable.

      Great to see you again Adrienne and I hope you had a great weekend.

      We’re heading back up to Scotland on Wednesday so back to the grindstone after that!


  22. says

    I absolutely had no idea there was such a thing to worry about. How the heck are you tracking on all this? Looks like you’re really nailing the back end of blogging; I applaud you.

    Now, do I really need to worry about this, or can I let it slide a bit longer?

    Thanks for the great info, Tim.

    • says

      Hi Jayme

      Sorry it’s taken me a while to get back to you. I’ve been away on vacation.

      I really like finding out about this stuff and hope it helps people to find out a little more about the back end of blogging!

      I ignored the DoFollow and NoFollow stuff for a long time. I think if you make any affiliate links (if you use them) NoFollow then that would probably be enough.

      I’ve also made my social media links NoFollow too because I want Google to concentrate on other things on my blog. I’ve read in quite a few places that these can use up a lot of the Google bots resources when visiting your site.

      I hope you are well Jayme and thank you for your comments.


  23. says

    Hi Tim,
    Choosing between dofollow and nofollow links is a tough decision to make. This is one of the reasons why we don’t use CommentLuv on our blog. After reading your post, I realized that the risks of Google penalties are even higher than I thought.

    • says

      Hi Jack

      I think CommentLuv Premium is a perfect way to control NoFollow or DoFollow links in your comments.

      By default, all of the links in the comments are NoFollow on WordPress. So long as you check the links that people are adding then I don’t think there is a huge risk with Google.

      I would hope, in fact, that it would be the opposite. Since all of the updates Google has made, they are very interested in how our sites connect with others and the resources we use.

      By have some DoFollow links to authority sites and other sites relevant to your niche, this can only be beneficial, would you not think?

  24. Dankas says

    Good stuff, never thought about nofollowing my social media links…do it makes sense, you probably don’t want your FB page to rank above your website, and FB doesn’t need any more PR jusice anyways :)

    No I have to see how to implement this on site as well.

    • says

      Hi there

      Thank you for visiting my blog and for your comments.

      I’m glad you found it useful and I hope you find out how to implement NoFollow on your social media links :-).

  25. says

    Dofollow and nofollow are both important , we can use both of them wisely such as nofollow not relevan backlinks and dofollow to relevant backlinks.

    • says

      Hi Jack

      Welcome to my blog and thank you for your comments.

      I agree than DoFollow and NoFollow links are important, especially for organic link building.

      Great to see you.


  26. I. C. Daniel says

    DoFollow – Inlove about LOL

    I like your blog so I tried to subscribe, unfortunately I cannot agree with Facebook updates.

    I liked your facebook page too. I wonder why you don’t implement email subscription for news.

    Best regards from I. C. Daniel – Romania

    • says

      Hi there

      Welcome to my blog and thank you for your comments. I’m pleased you like my blog and thank you for liking my Facebook page.

      The Facebook login only appears if you’re currently logged into your Facebook account, otherwise the email and name fields appear.

      I do understand though that many people don’t want to use their Facebook login so I’ve disabled this feature.

      If you still want to subscribe then you can now do this without using your Facebook login.

      I used to use email subscription via Jetpack but decided that as my email marketing provider will also send out and email when my blog is updated that I’d prefer to do it that way.

      Great to see you and I hope you’ll come back again soon.


      • says

        Hi Tim,

        As expected I use Facebook so I’m online NONSTOP :P, however I’m not really there. I couldn’t knew if I’m not logged on Facebook there was the email subscription I expected.

        I’m very glad you fix this, so I subscribed few seconds ago, just need to click that activation link when I visit my gmail account.

        See you next time, Best regards from I. C. Daniel – Romania

        • says

          Hi Daniel

          I’m probably the same as you when it comes to signing up to stuff with Facebook but I hadn’t really considered that when I set the opt-in form up.

          It makes sense to remove the Facebook login really, so thank you for pointing that out.

          Also, thank you for subscribing to my email list.

          Have a great weekend.


  27. says

    great article tim
    yes giving dofollow links will attract more visitors as well as spammers but it will surely bring more comments to your blog. but actually i have a question here. does giving DOfollow links to others passes your PR means will your PR decrease if you give DoFollow links to others

    • says

      Thanks Prabhat

      That was a slight concern of mine about PR being diluted by having DoFollow links.

      I’m sure it does a little but I’m not so bothered really because I’m trying to create a community of like-minded people.

      If Google likes it then great and if they don’t, fair enough, I can live with that.

      From what I’ve read, since the last few Google updates, it’s more about the content and social media shares in any case.

      I rely less and less on SEO to achieve anything with Google.

  28. says

    Great article, I just got the comment Luv Premium plugin in hopes of driving traffic to my site and building an online presence and relationship with my readers. I am still really new with all this. However, I decided to make the comments on my site dofollow. I have put all my heart in SEO once and it did not help doing everything that the search engines wanted, I still lost a lot of my rankings on the last update.

    With my new blog, I am working more on building a relationship with my readers. Yes good rankings will help, but if you build a following and have a great relationship with your readers, I see that as a good thing, even if Google does something you really don’t like.

    Your post really helped me out with the settings on my plugin. Great advice.

    • Tim Bonner says

      Hi Susan

      Welcome to my blog and thank you for your comments.

      I try not to rely on Google so much these days with all of the updates causing mayhem a lot of them time!

      CommentLuv certainly helps to generate interest in people commenting on your blog and to build relationships.

      I’ve found blog commenting a lot of help with direct traffic too.

      Have you tried Triberr to generate traffic via Twitter?

      That helped to increase my traffic from social media.

      Glad that my post helped you out Susan.

      Have a relaxing Sunday and I hope you’ll stop by again soon.


  29. says

    Hi Tim,

    Funny, Adrienne’s post today triggered something in the back of my noggin and I had remembered you’d written (and commented) about this a time or two.

    Anyway glad I found this after a quick search. Very informative! Something that used to be on the periphery for me is now front and center!

    Damn spammers making us do more work 😉 Bugger!

    Hope things are well.

    • says

      Hi Craig

      Great minds think alike, eh? The same title as well!

      I’m pleased you found it informative and had remembered I’d written about it :-).

      I thought about making my site completely NoFollow other than internal links but I think that could also be detrimental SEO-wise.

      Linking out to relevant sites seems to be something that Google are looking out for as a good visitor experience.

      It’s a shame that comment spammers have to spoil our fun, isn’t it?

      Great to see you Craig. I’m very well thank you and will be stopping by your blog very soon.

      Commenting is getting the better of me these days, so I apologise in advance that I’ve not stopped by sooner.

      I hope you’re well too.

  30. Mel says

    Thank you for this very helpful article. I made my blog DoFollow for the same reasons as you, and I’ve had a ton of spammers. I allowed it at first, but after reading this I am going back in and marking them all as spam. Very helpful. Thanks.


    • says

      Hi Mel

      My pleasure. DoFollow does tend to bring out the spammers and backlink hunters.

      I always moderate the first comment for anyone leaving a comment and if I still wonder about them, I add them to the requires moderation section.

      Great to see you and thank you for your comments.


  31. says

    Hi Tim,
    I can see why this post of yours has loads and loads of comments. What I had read was that there is nothing like nofollow. It was like no dofollow. The dofollow links add pagerank juice to your blog while nofollow links do not add to the link juice. Anyhow, we must be really careful with assigning dofollow to the links from our blog.

    • says

      Hi Vineet

      Thank you for your comments.

      I tend to leave most of the links in my posts as DoFollow because Google is also interested in the reader experience.

      If you NoFollow all of your links, then you’re not necessarily providing that.

      Some may consider that as giving away free link juice, however I don’t because I think Google are also suspicious of too many NoFollow links.

      The main links I use NoFollow on are:

      – Social Media Accounts;
      – Affiliate Links
      – Links which I don’t necessarily trust.

      All others I leave as DoFollow.


  32. says

    Thank you so much for your advice! I’ve just installed the CommentLuv plugin and needed help on making the decision of whether to go dofollow or not! I’m gonna open the comments up and go for dofollow! Hopefully spam will stay away with Askimet and GASP :)

  33. says

    I’m fairly new to this, but your article clears up a lot of things and answers most of my questions, so thanks for sharing!

    One thing I’m wondering however is to what extend I should make external links in my posts no follow. I’ve read somewhere that it’s good to link to relevant pages in your posts. So for example, when I write an article on Covent Garden, I could link to the Visit London page of Covent Garden. This article I read said that it was important to link to relevant and important pages in your own posts. What do you think about this? And should I make these links no follow as well?

    • says

      My pleasure Maaike. I’m glad you found my article useful.

      It’s important to link to your internal pages and in particular those that you place more value on. That way, Google knows that you’re placing importance on those pages as well as you steering your readers to where you want them to go.

      Similarly Google are keen to see that you’re providing a hub of information (not just on your own site) so linking out to other authoritative sites with relevant dofollow links is important. As a general rule I usually include between two and four external links for each 1,000 words.

      I hope that helps but if you have any further questions, please let me know.

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