To link or not to link, here is the question…
Maria Silvia Sanna
If you are using WordLift for a while, you know that all the magic is based on the creation of entities, on their semantic markup and on the interlinking between articles and entities. It all happens with a few clicks on your WordPress editor, with no need to code anything.
Well, we listened to the needs of our clients and we changed something for the better. There is one major change you need to know: you will have the power to choose whether to link or not your article to your entity pages while adding schema.org markup.
Whaaaat? This is a big big thing, and so I will let our biz dev Gennaro explain it for me. See this short tutorial for the link-no-link feature.
Why should you add a link to your entity, and why not?
Now that you know what and how, let’s explore why. To link or not to link, this will be the question from now on. How do you choose?
Well, the first thing you should ask yourself is: will this link add a value for your reader or distract him/her?
Here is a short list of typical cases we collected from our client’s experience and from our own.
- The most typical case is that you are using an entity which is the very basis of the topic you are exploring and you assume your readers already know it enough. For example, if in this article I used the word website, I could be quite sure that no one of my human readers would need any explanation about such an obvious thing, but search engines’ spiders still need it to better understand the context I refer to.
- You need to markup semantically your article with many entities, but you are afraid that links could distract your readers. Fine, select the entities which are more likely to add something meaningful to your readers’ experience and then took off the link from all the others. Think carefully: this is an editorial choice and it’s completely up to you!
- Also, you may have a SEO concern about the number of links on your page. Given that it’s a good rule to keep the number of links (both internal and external) below the 100-link mark, you may need to be even more careful while selecting the entities that will be linked to their own pages. Try not to have too many links to the entities per article, and – of course – try not too have to many links at all.
- Finally, sometimes you annotate your text with entities, but you don’t have the time to curate the new entity pages before publishing your article. This may happen because in some cases timing is crucial for your content to reach a broader audience. In this kind of situation, you’ll better add semantic markup to your article without a link to the entity pages. You can always add links later -when you’ll add some piece of information to your entity pages; until then remember to use “no-index” for those incomplete entity pages.
What if – instead – you’d like to give your readers the opportunity to go deeper into some entity, but don’t want them to leave your article? Well, we are also thinking about that…
How to embed the content of an entity into your article
As you may know, our entities are represented as JSON-LD objects – the format suggested by Google – this means that any time you create an entity you are publishing data which can be reused and which – da-dan! – is layout-independent, so the entity can adapt itself to the style of your website. Pretty cool, uh?
If your readers still don’t know anything about WordPress, they will be happy to have a bit of information on the same page where they are reading your article.
At the moment, this is quite a nerdy solution, which requires little coding expertise and some customization, but… we are working on an easier and faster solution within WordPress editor.