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  1. #1
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    What is the use of rel external in hyperlinks

    I saw many websites add rel="external" what does that mean, does it act like Nofollow tags.

  2. #2
    In memoriam gold trophysilver trophybronze trophy Dan Schulz's Avatar
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    No. It's a custom attribute used by JavaScript applications to open Web pages in new windows or tabs. It also has no impact on a Web page's optimization for the search engines.

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    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    The rel attribute is supposed to describe the relationship that the file linked to has to the current page. In the case of rel="stylesheet" it means that the file is a stylesheet for the current page. For rel="external" it means the file is on a different site to the current one. For rel="nofollow" it means that the link should be ignored because there is nothing worth seeing at the other end. For menu links it indicates the page that the link is attached to.

    In the case of rel="nofollow" search engines obey that instruction in calculating Larry Page Rank (in the case of Google) and the eqwuivalent for other search engines that don't have Larry.

    In the case of rel="external" you can use JavaScript to detect those references and have it do whatever you want (such as having the javaScript change the link destinations to internal pages so that visitors can't escape from your site that way).

    The rev attribute serves the opposite purpose of identifying what relationship the current page has to the file at the other end of the link.
    Stephen J Chapman

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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by felgall View Post
    The rel attribute is supposed to describe the relationship that the file linked to has to the current page. In the case of rel="stylesheet" it means that the file is a stylesheet for the current page. For rel="external" it means the file is on a different site to the current one. For rel="nofollow" it means that the link should be ignored because there is nothing worth seeing at the other end. For menu links it indicates the page that the link is attached to.

    In the case of rel="nofollow" search engines obey that instruction in calculating Larry Page Rank (in the case of Google) and the eqwuivalent for other search engines that don't have Larry.

    In the case of rel="external" you can use JavaScript to detect those references and have it do whatever you want (such as having the javaScript change the link destinations to internal pages so that visitors can't escape from your site that way).

    The rev attribute serves the opposite purpose of identifying what relationship the current page has to the file at the other end of the link.

    Hi,
    Yes, This attribute is NoFollow, as in place of rel= "external" we can use rel="NoFollow", as the main use of this is, it is not for the Crawler to crawl the page on which we are using this rel. but a user can go through the page.

    As the advantage of this is, not to get outbound links from the No Follow sites.

  5. #5
    SitePoint Addict zaizaices's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by namratasnv View Post
    Hi,
    Yes, This attribute is NoFollow, as in place of rel= "external" we can use rel="NoFollow", as the main use of this is, it is not for the Crawler to crawl the page on which we are using this rel. but a user can go through the page.

    As the advantage of this is, not to get outbound links from the No Follow sites.
    I got confuse on your answer. As Stephen and Dan already said, they are different. They have different uses.

  6. #6
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    Rel is used a lot in Microformats for explaining relationships between links for social engineering, Dan is incorrect in thinking it has no real effect on search engines as they are using them more and more within places like Google and social networking websites to make use of the information (which is highly valuable in determining how links and social groups are built), for information about the various rel links, visit the following page for a comprehensive look at different implementations in use...

    http://microformats.org/wiki/existing-rel-values

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the post Mr. dawson it is very informative but my question is whether pagerank count will be affected by this way of linking?

  8. #8
    Motivated Procrastinator seriocomic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by countyleave View Post
    my question is whether pagerank count will be
    affected by this way of linking?
    No

  9. #9
    In memoriam gold trophysilver trophybronze trophy Dan Schulz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    Rel is used a lot in Microformats for explaining relationships between links for social engineering, Dan is incorrect in thinking it has no real effect on search engines as they are using them more and more within places like Google and social networking websites to make use of the information (which is highly valuable in determining how links and social groups are built), for information about the various rel links, visit the following page for a comprehensive look at different implementations in use...

    http://microformats.org/wiki/existing-rel-values
    The simple fact that they are experimenting with it tells me that it's not ready for prime time as far as they're concerned. As such I'm stating that it doesn't have any impact on a regular page's optimization. When they decide what they're going to do with it and the other search engines adopt Google's lead, then I'll change my stance.

    Until then I'm considering it to be nothing more than an experiment at worst and an upcoming factor that's still being developed and tested at best. You know, like CSS 3. (And just like CSS 3, not ready for prime time as far as SEO's concerned.)

  10. #10
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    countyleave, if there is any PageRank effect from the use of microformats and rel values, it would be tiny at best, Google are still in alpha stage of making use of this kind of social linking so you won't really see a difference (with exception of nofollow), personally I like to use Microformats so when they are more widely accepted it provides the engines that can use them with more useful information, it could actually become something in the future which will hold a lot of value in terms of results, but as it stands microformats are still on the bleeding edge of their potential usage.

  11. #11
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Just because search engines don't use them doesn't mean that they are not ready for prime time. I don;t think search engines make much of id or class attributes either so by that logic we should avoid using any of those in our pages too until the search engines decide to do something with them.

    The rel attribute has a specific meaning (slightly distorted by the way search engines use nofollow since that is not exactly how it is meant to be used) and it has been practical at least since IE5 to interact with them from JavaScript and Opera and iCab have supported their use to generate browser menus for many years (at least since version 7 for Opera and years earlier for iCab).

    So my best guess on when the rel attribute will be ready for prime time (where it can actually do something) is 2001 (2002 at the absolute latest).
    Stephen J Chapman

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  12. #12
    In memoriam gold trophysilver trophybronze trophy Dan Schulz's Avatar
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    Stephen, I meant "prime time" from a search engine's point of view. As a developer, I'm all for using them now -- I'm just saying don't expect much from the search engines until they catch up with us.


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