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internal links

Measuring Internal Links

Internal links are not just pivotal for SEO,  they also enhance user experience by guiding visitors to more relevant content, increasing the time they spend on your site. For deep content, the strategic use of internal links can help in creating a cohesive content ecosystem that reinforces your site’s authority and value to the reader. It’s another of those metrics that many people fail to track but is an important foundation for your topline goals.

Analyzing Internal Links

To measure the effectiveness of internal linking within your long-form content, you need the click-through rate (CTR) on internal links.  This metric helps you understand how effectively your content prompts readers to explore further into your site. A higher CTR indicates that your content is engaging and successfully encourages readers to seek more information or resources available on your website. You also need to ensure you’re linking to pages that perform well, like gated content, product pages, and others that move the user from awareness to consideration.

Beyond proactively driving the user to other parts of your site, doing a historical analysis of the pathways users take after clicking an internal link can provide some important clues.  GA4 has replaced the old behavior flow report with exploration templates that help you visualize the current journey of users through your site.  This analysis will reveal the drop-off points that need addressing. It can also show you what’s working – words, CTA’s , images – to drive people deeper on your site.

Continuous Improvement via Link Performance

Use the insights gained from tracking internal link performance and user pathways to refine your content strategy as part of an ongoing feedback loop. This will help you to:

  • Identify opportunities to link to high-value pages that might not be performing well organically.
  • Ensure that the anchor text for internal links is descriptive and aligns with the linked page’s content.
  • Replicate pages that are excellent “transports” by copying formats like listicles but with new topics, for example.

Continuous optimization is key. Test different approaches to internal linking, such as varying the placement of links within your content or experimenting with the number of links. Monitoring how these changes affect user engagement and journey through your site will help in fine-tuning your strategy to maximize content effectiveness.

Adding internal linking as a metric for content success elevates the strategic value of your long-form content. It not only aids in SEO efforts but also significantly improves user engagement and navigation on your site. By tracking and analyzing internal link performance, B2B marketers can enhance the reader’s journey, encourage deeper site exploration, and ultimately, drive more leads.


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