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As a Q&A site, we naturally link to a lot of external URLs. Part of what makes q&a sites awesome is that we typically link to the right pages.

Before linking out, I encourage everyone to look inward first...we have a lot of amazing answers that fall through the cracks. I'm not just up here trying to be a goody two shoes either. I link out all the time.

But after looking at a few things I strongly believe that cannibalization + internal link architecture issues are inhibiting our site quite a bit when it comes to organic search.

We ought to have that sort of thing on lock, yeah?

Just a thought.

I have absolutely, positively, no data to support my theory...but my gut says it's true. I welcome any and all criticism/speculation. Let's think it out. But there's sure as heck something wacky going on with the site.

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    Agreed that we have a lot of great answers here, ripe for internal links. One thing I do a lot that I find mondo helpful is to type into Google search site:webmasters.stackexchange.com the topic I am looking for. More often than not, it returns a post that I can internal link for context, and it does so more efficiently than Stack Exchange's built in search. As a side note it's also great for finding duplicate questions, when a question comes in that you're just sure has been asked before. Nov 13 '21 at 7:15
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    Also, more specifically what kind of wackiness are you seeing? At a glance Webmaster SE's Google presence seems about what I would expect, but it sounds like you're looking at it in greater detail than me! Nov 13 '21 at 7:19
  • @MaximillianLaumeister Spectacular comments above. Re: wackiness - It's likely that we're looking at different things, rather than one in more detail than another. Too tired to do more type. Let's discuss manana. Nov 13 '21 at 8:07
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There are three good places to look for pages on our site that have great content to link to:

Here are the 37 questions that I have bookmarked to use as reference links:

It also occurs to me that we might want to try to ask some basic questions ourselves and provide high quality answers so that we can use them as reference. Right now I would probably look externally for a resource to link for further reading on these subjects:

  • What is search engine optimization (SEO)?
  • What is a canonical tag?
  • What is a redirect?
  • What is a hreflang?
  • What is a rewrite rule?
  • What is .htaccess?
  • What is shared hosting?
  • What is a dedicated server?
  • What is cloud hosting?
  • What is DNS?
  • What is a CNAME?
  • What is an A record?
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  • This is a great resource Stephen. Thank you for providing this. I absolutely agree that we should work on asking some basic/general questions of our own and providing HQ answers - fantastic idea. We could even provide an "FAQ" section internally linking to top questions on the subject. This also helps us more easily deal with duplicates, as we'll have general content to direct broad/vague questions. Should we create an initiative on a separate question? Nov 27 '21 at 16:01
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    A separate question for an initiative would be good I think. Can you spearhead that? Nov 27 '21 at 16:39
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    I'd be happy to. Just put one up for the broken links project too. Nov 27 '21 at 17:12

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