External Vs. Internal Links Ratio

The proportion between external and internal links on a website


External vs. Internal Links Ratio refers to the percentage difference between the number of external links (links pointing to other websites) and internal links (links pointing to other pages within the same website) on a webpage. This ratio is significant as it can influence the search engine ranking of the website. While both types of links are important for SEO, maintaining a balanced ratio can contribute to the overall SEO strategy.

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Usage and Context

This ratio is used in SEO to ensure a balance between user experience and search engine optimization. Too many external links may lead users away from the site, while too many internal links could lead to confusion and poor user experience. The ratio may vary depending on the nature of the content. For instance, a blog post might have more external links, while a product description page might have more internal links.


  1. What is the ideal external vs internal links ratio?

    • There's no definitive 'ideal' ratio, as it depends on the website's nature and the specific page. However, maintaining a balance where neither type of link overwhelms the other is generally advised.
  2. How does the ratio of external to internal links affect SEO?

    • Both external and internal links are important for SEO. External links can increase the site's authority, while internal links aid navigation and help establish information hierarchy for the given website.
  3. Can having too many external links be harmful?

    • Yes, excessive external links can lead users away from your site, potentially increasing bounce rate. They may also dilute the page's authority if they're not from reputable sources.
  4. What are the benefits of maintaining a balanced external vs. internal links ratio?

    • A balanced links ratio can improve user experience, help search engines understand website structure, distribute page authority evenly across the site, and potentially boost the site's search engine ranking.
  5. How to calculate the external vs. internal links ratio?

    • You can calculate the ratio by dividing the total number of external links by the total number of internal links on a page. SEO audit tools can also provide this information.


  1. Improved User Experience: A balanced links ratio helps make a website easier to navigate, leading to a better user experience.
  2. Enhanced SEO: Balancing internal and external links can positively impact a website's search engine ranking.
  3. Better Site Structure: Internal linking aids in establishing a coherent site structure and information hierarchy.
  4. Increased Authority: External links, when used properly, can increase the site's authority and trustworthiness.
  5. Controlled Bounce Rate: Maintaining a proper links ratio can help control the bounce rate by keeping visitors engaged and guiding them through the site.

Tips and Recommendations

  1. Balance the Ratio: Aim for a balance between external and internal links, without letting either type dominate.
  2. Relevance is Key: Ensure all links, whether external or internal, are relevant to the content and provide value to the user.
  3. Use Descriptive Anchor Text: Use clear, descriptive anchor text for both internal and external links to aid user experience and SEO.
  4. Regularly Audit Your Links: Regularly check the status of your links to ensure they're not broken or leading to outdated content.
  5. Avoid Link Overload: Avoid overwhelming your content with links. Too many links can confuse users and dilute your SEO efforts.


Establishing a balanced External vs. Internal Links Ratio is crucial for a comprehensive SEO strategy. While the exact ratio may vary depending on the specific website or page, the aim should be to provide a balanced, valuable, and navigable experience for both users and search engines. Regular audits, relevant linking, and avoiding link overload are key aspects to maintaining this balance.