Do outbound links matter for SEO?

In our plugin, we have a check for outbound links. Is there an outbound link on your post or page? And in case there isn’t one, please add an outbound link to your content! Why do we insist on adding a link like that? Isn’t it true that you should get links to your website, and to your website only? Well… Not per se.

What are outbound links?

There are a gazillion types of links. The most common ones are these, I think:

Outbound links in Yoast SEO

In the meta box below your Edit post screen, you’ll find the section called “Improvements”. If not, please update our plugin as you’re using a very old version. “Very old” is pretty relative in terms of internet years, right? In that section “Improvements”, there’s this one check that says:

Consider adding some as appropriate. We really feel that every page should have an outbound link. We’re not throwing a red bullet here. We’re not forcing you to add that one to your post. But we would really like you to.

Why we want you to add outbound links to your post

You must wonder by now why we want you to add that link anyway. Our mission is SEO for Everyone. We strongly believe in equal chances for everyone on a connected web. By asking you to add that outbound link, we ask you to connect your website to the next website. And that website to the next website. By doing so, we create a web that expands and expands, from one related website to another. We help Google to connect the dots. We help Bing to get insights on what sites or better what pages relate to each other.

By connecting the web, and structuring the web with your help, we help search engines find interesting websites. We help interesting websites rank in Google. With your help. SEO for Everyone.

So.. do outbound links matter for SEO?

Outbound links most definitely matter for SEO. Not per se for your SEO, but for SEO in the most generic way there is. Your outbound link helps your neighbor, your supplier, your customer and of course, your visitor. So we strongly believe there is a good reason we have a check for them in our Yoast SEO plugin!

Read more: ‘Link building from a holistic SEO perspective’ »