What are Google Sitelinks?

Sitelinks are generated by Google automatically and they appear in the natural search results listings as below:

Unfortunately, Google does not say exactly how they are generated. They say there are best practices webmasters can follow to improve the quality of their sitelinks. For example, for the site’s internal links, they recommend use anchor text and alt text that’s informative, compact, and avoids repetition.

Here are some of the ways sitelinks are generated:

– Site ranks first for the keyword(s) that generate the Sitelinks listing
– Easily spiderable, structured navigation
– High natural search traffic
– High click through rates from the search results page
– Useful outbound links
– Inbound links from high quality sites
– Age of site – the older sites may have more sitelinks than younger ones

So now we have covered that off, the next step is to help your site get sitelinks:

1. Useful to Google
According to Google, they only display sitelinks on sites they think are useful. In their words “We only show sitelinks for results when we think they’ll be useful to the user. If the structure of your site doesn’t allow our algorithms to find good sitelinks, or we don’t think that the sitelinks for your site are relevant for the user’s query, we won’t show them.”

Therefore you need to make sure your site has clear and easy user navigation. There will be text links to other parts of the site which the user can click on.

2. Page title and meta description
Make sure you adherer to seo best practice, meaning you optimise the page titles and meta descriptions, encouraging people to click through to your site.

3. Outbound links
With all websites, they should be easy to navigate, full of interesting content which includes providing useful outbound links through out the site. Do not worry, you are not encouraging your customers to leave the site, if they found your site interesting, they will come back.

4. Google Webmaster Tools
If you have not done so already, register your site with Google webmaster tools. Then you can monitor your sitelinks and even delete those that you do not want appearing in the SERPs.

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