John Muller of Google Clarified About the Impact of Nofollow Attributes On Outgoing Links

Recently the question was raised at Google Webmaster Central hangout about whether marking outbound links as no-follow links have any positive impact on ranking or not. To which John Mueller clearly said that this is simply a misconception.

Many notable publishers have been tagging every outgoing link with rel=nofollow. The idea behind is that ranking will become worse because of following links that will leak link juice.

Overusing the nofollow attribute on outgoing links is not the natural way linking web pages. Thus, this practice may create issues later on.

Muller stated that marking outgoing links as nofollow will not give any benefit in ranking. Normal links have more chances of improving the rank with time, as it shows that the site is part of the normal web ecosystem.

The reason that some of the sites mark all outgoing links as nofollow links are to keep themselves on the safe side. Everything is marked with unfollowing attribute when a website is not sure about which link they should work on.

According to Muller, it can cause problems because publishers should stick to their content. Sometimes it is difficult to judge which link should be trusted. In this case, the content should be enough to rely on, he added.

Another way is to identify at least a certain part of the content that publishers consider reliable and index it. If publishers stand by their content then the normal links should be built.

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