On September 10, 2019, Google launched a new way to tag links (you can see it in its central blog: https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2019/09/evolving-nofollow-new-ways-to-identify.html) we put on our website. This can affect both the internal links you have and your backlink strategy. From now on there are 3 possible tags that will identify the link use and origin:
- rel = “sponsored“: the sponsored attribute is used to identify links created as part of advertisements, sponsorships or other compensation agreements.
- rel = “ugc”: UGC stands for User-generated content, this attribute is recommended for links within user-generated content, such as comments and forum posts.
- rel = “nofollow“: this attribute will be used for cases in which you want to link a page, but do not want to transfer positioning to another page.
What steps must be followed on your website now?
Surely you are thinking of changing all the links on your website right now, but don’t hurry. Google itself advises us not to go crazy and leave what is already done and set these labels in our new actions.
The “nofollow” links will continue to have the same function as until now, so if you put a link with the intention of transferring positioning or so that a page is not detected, you do not need to change anything. Although as of March 2020, Google will consider the “nofollow” attributes as a recommendation and there may be some cases in which you can position the page which the link is pointing to..
Can multiple tags be used in a link?
Of course, yes. It may be the case that the content is created by the user but at the same time it has been paid to place this content or link. For this we can use the combination of the rel = “sponsored” and rel =”ugc” tags. The link would be as follows <a rel=”ugc sponsored” href=”https/multiconversion.com”> Own content promoted </a>
As we have shown you with the previous example, it could be done for the rest of the labels. <a rel=”ugc nofollow” href=”https/multiconversion.com”> Own content that you don’t want to be linked to </a>
Can I be penalized for an error in the label’s creation?
Google does not say exactly the type of penalty will be an error in the links labelling, but if it warns the links that are sponsored, they should always carry the “nofollow” or “sponsored” label. In case of not doing so, there could be a penalty from Google. On the other hand, if what you do is put the sponsored label on a “ucg” or “nofollow” link, there will be no penalty, but it will continue and transmit positioning to the page which the link is pointing to.