Content Marketing Blog

Internal links in your Google results

If you regularly Google your own name, you're probably either a politician, a celebrity or a little self-obsessed (or even all three). But if you run a website, you probably Google your brand regularly to see how your results are presented and what else is ranking.

One thing you may have noticed while doing this (or Googling other brands, which if you're a Chrome user, you probably do all the time courtesy of the merged address and search bar) is links to internal pages in the top results.

A search for "Myer", the popular Australian department store, for example, returns the Myer homepage as the top result. No surprise there. But you will notice that within the result, Google has listed links to pages within Myer's site.

If you provide a meta-description for your web pages, Google ought to pull it out and display it on the results page, but these links won't be in Myer's meta-description.

From running a few little tests and digging around on Google's Webmaster Central, whether or not these links are included appears to depend on two rather familiar factors.

The first is whether or not pages within a site rank in their own right. The flat structure of the Myer site and the presence of established landing pages make it easy for Google to pick out a second tier of pages that are likely to be of interest to someone running that search.

The second factor is the relevance of the site to the search. A broader search for "Sydney department store" also returns Myer's homepage among the top results. As with the "Myer" search, the homepage and pages within the site are closely related to the search term and therefore presented in the results.

If you run an even broader search for something like "electrical store Sydney" Myer is once again on page one. However, the search term is looser this time, so Myer's site (the homepage rather than a dedicated landing page) is less certain to be what you're after and therefore, no internal links are included in the result.

There are some obvious benefits to having links to pages within your site appear in SERPs alongside (or instead of) your homepage. Beyond very specific search terms, you're unlikely to be able to make this happen.

What you can do is make sure your site has a nice simple, flat structure that Google and other search engines can crawl easily. Constructing dedicated landing pages is not only consistent with a search-friendly site structure, it also presents additional pages that Google might return in searches specific to your brand.