Google Update rel=nofollow is Now a “Hint” for Ranking

On Tuesday Google made an official announcement to
how they are changing the way they treat Nofollow
links. (This change is actually live)

Before the change

Before when Google found a Nofollow link then the
link would NOT be used for Crawling or Indexing and
it would NOT be used for Ranking.

Now

In the latest announcement Google has stated that
Nofollow links may be used as a “hint” for Ranking
purposes.

They will NOT be used for Crawling or Indexing.

Nofollow Changes in March 2020

On March the 1st 2020 Google will start to use Nofollow
links as a “hint” for Crawling and Indexing.

Other changes

In addition to the changes noted above, Google has
added two new link attributes

* rel=”sponsored”
* rel=”ugc”

rel=”sponsored” would be used for paid links whereas
rel=”ugc” would be used for user generated content
such as in Comments or on forums.

Do I need to make any changes to my site?

Making use of the 2 new link attributes is entirely
your choice. if you already use nofollow for such
links then you don’t need to do anything if you don’t
want to.

Google will still continue to work with the nofollow
attribute.

Looking forwards

To me, this sounds like an exciting change and I cant
wait to start testing things out for myself.

At least the Nofollow links that we now create will
not be completely ignored.

Now I just need to find out how much of a “hint” Google
actually needs to Rank me higher

Additional reading

If you would like to read more about this update
then you can read it on seoroundtable

Time to be prepared, stay prepared and reap the benefits. Keep in mind that Google is still being bound by their own infrastructure of the web, even today.

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