How to Make Free Backlinks: Dofollow Backlinks and Nofollow SEO

By: | July 1, 2018 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

How to get free backlinks

Janice Wald

Do you know what bloggers want more than anything?

They want this so fervently I consider it bloggers’ currency.

I used to think it was time. I was wrong.

Can you guess?

What bloggers want more than anything are free backlinks.

Articles are written about how to get free backlinks.

People go to question and answer sites asking how they can get free backlinks.

Free backlinks are so valuable I started a Link Exchange since Google likes us to link to relevant content.

Bloggers who engage in Black Hat SEO try to buy quality backlinks instead of getting them for free, a practice Google reportedly frowns on.

In contrast, this post will share the best SEO practices.

When sponsors need to pay bloggers, they might offer them free backlinks instead of monetary compensation.

Free backlinks are that valuable.

Bloggers who are knowledgeable about SEO want to get backlinks.

There are two kinds of hyperlinks: nofollow backlinks and dofollow backlinks.

This guide will explain

what a nofollow SEO backlink is

what a dofollow backlink is

why dofollow backlinks are so valuable

how to build backlinks on your own website to someone else’s site

how you can change no follow backlinks to dofollow backlinks

and how to change dofollow backlinks to nofollow SEO links

Building backlinks is easy with this tutorial.

These are actionable tips about backlink generators without the use of an SEO tool.

Let’s get started.

When you create great content and solve people’s problems for them, people will link to you.

When people link to you and your Domain Authority ranking rises, people might decide they want a link from you.

They might ask you for dofollow backlinks or nofollow backlinks.

What are Nofollow and Dofollow Backlinks?

What is the difference between nofollow links and dofollow backlinks?

Dofollow backlinks provide what is called “Google juice.” Dofollow links provide a big boost to you in search engines– Google juice, if you will.

Previously, it was disputed whether nofollow links help your SEO.

“Nofollow” tells search engine bots not to follow your link, hence the name “nofollow.”

However, it is important to build relevant links to your site of either kind.

First, If people follow those links, you’ll get traffic. Also, you’re building a link profile; the links are like credentials on a resume so to speak.

Would you like to see your link profile? You will find these “online credentials” at OpenLinkProfiler.

This is a screenshot from my link portfolio at OpenLinkProfiler.

On April 14, I made a comment on this blog so I received a link. Notice the link is labeled “nofollow.”

Although the Seranking blog agrees nofollow SEO links won’t get you Google juice, “Search engines respect this tag.”


Google announced nofollow links will carry more weight starting in the spring of 2020.

There is often confusion regarding dofollow links. People want to know what “dofollow” means as well as the correct spelling of “dofollow.”

People also don’t know if these are “dofollow links” or “dofollow backlinks.”

For example, I have seen “dofollow links” spelled in all sorts of ways: 

“Do follow link,” “dofollow backlinks,” “do follow backlinks”

What are do follow backlink sites?

Since dofollow backlinks are such a valuable way to boost your SEO, it’s crucial to try to find dofollow back links sites. 

These are sites that provide you dofollow links when you leave your link there. 

Here are a list of blog commenting sites that will provide you free dofollow backlinks.

Backlink sites dofollow 

Here is a dofollow backlink list –

Why you might need outbound dofollow backlinks:

I know of four situations where you might need to change nofollow SEO links to dofollow backlinks:

Situation 1:

Do you host guest authors?

Bloggers want a valuable currency to guest post these days.

Can you guess what it is? Clue: It’s not money.

Bloggers want a dofollow link.

The first time I was asked, I was intimidated at the thought of manipulating code, so I skirted the issue.

The next time I was asked, I wanted the guest post badly.

The blogger was offering Mostly Blogging’s readers a resource we’d never had on this blog: a checklist of what to do after you publish your blog post. Muhammad, the guest author, wanted a dofollow link. I didn’t know how to change the link at the time but I drooled at the thought of having a blog post checklist on my site– what a resource!

Situation 2:

A photo existed I wanted to use with my articles. The photographer asked for a dofollow link to her site when I gave her source credit.

The Binary Note blog agrees that often guest bloggers request dofollow backlinks, and if you want their articles, it’s necessary to pay the price. “Sometimes, we need to even reward our guest bloggers for their valuable work as they render their best to us. I think they also need dofollow backlinks. Most of the time, your WordPress templates and famous WordPress plugins, by default create all external links nofollow.”

Situation 3:

This is the third example of a time you might need to change nofollow to dofollow backlinks. Although this situation didn’t apply to me, I still read about it:

A Facebook group for round-up posts made a rule– you must pay the person who contributes to your expert interview: give dofollow backlinks.

This post will explain how.

Situation 4:

Enstine Muki discusses another advantage of dofollow links when discussing his new plugin that encourages comments:

“Generate a list of your comment authors for a given month of the year. Then create a blog post to thank them for commenting on your blog.

This is a great way to attract more repeat visitors to your blog. By publishing a list of your commentators, you make them feel welcome and encouraged.

For those who are more active, you may want to give them a dofollow link on the list by setting a certain number of comments that will be required for the dofollow link to be enabled.”

In other words, to thank people for commenting a minimum number of times, you could give them free backlinks that are dofollow backlinks to say “thank you.”

Dofollow Backlinks

Many bloggers find the prospect of changing a code intimidating, but changing nofollow SEO links to dofollow backlinks is actually pretty easy.

How to create backlinks that are dofollow backlinks:

Step 1:  Insert your backlink. Instructions for putting in an HTML backlink can be found in my guide to hyperlinks.

The screenshot shows how to edit your link:How to get free backlinks

Make sure when you edit your link, you click Open Link in New Tab:

How to get free backlinks dofollow backlinks

Step 2: Go into the edit mode of a post containing a link you want to change. Click “Text.” This will bring up the HTML code.

Link Problems

Step 3: Find the link you want to make dofollow. Clicking “Ctrl F” on a PC will bring up the “find” function. If you paste what you are looking for in the “find” box, it should be highlighted for you to easily find.

Step 4: Add rel = do follow. The beginning of the link will end up looking like this: <a rel=”dofollow” href=

Step 5: Save.

Step 6: In Preview mode, click the link just to make sure it still works.

According to Binary Note, although plugins exist which will alter the structure of all links, this method is the only way to make a single link dofollow.

Note: I am not recommending you change nofollow SEO backlinks to dofollow backlinks. I have heard rumors that this is considered “Black Hat” SEO technique and could get you penalized by Google. These instructions are offered in case you should decide you want to change the structure of a link.

At all times, when you link, make sure you link to relevant content.

Nofollow SEO Backlinks

Most links are nofollow SEO backlinks. They contain the least “Google juice.”

However, Google announced starting in the spring of 2020, nofollow links will contain more “Google juice” than they did in the past.

Why you might need outbound nofollow SEO backlinks:

According to Amy Lynn Andrews,

“Is there a way to link (so your readers can check it out) but not give a “thumb’s up” to the search engines? Why yes, yes there is.

Use the nofollow tag.

The nofollow tag on a link tells a search engine not to follow that link. Essentially, you are closing the door to that link so the bots don’t go there.”

Always use the nofollow tag when:

  1. You link to a site you don’t want to “vote” for or can’t vouch for.
  2. You link to a site that requires a login or registration.
  3. You use an affiliate link or are linking to a sponsor’s site or another site with whom you have some sort of paid relationship.

I was actually asked to make a dofollow link nofollow. You might wonder why I’d need to do that.

As it turns out, my blog is on a dofollow backlinks list.

How to make an HTML backlink nofollow SEO: 

  • You can use a plugin but plugins slow down your site
  • Manually make dofollow backlinks nofollow.

Step 1: Insert your backlink.

Step 2: Click the Text tab. This will put you in HTML mode.

Step 3: Follow the above instructions for making an HTML backlink dofollow. However, don’t type rel=”dofollow”. Type rel=”nofollow”.

When the Fotor company, who sponsored a post, asked me to make a link nofollow, the link looked like this:

Use the Fotor Graphic Design tool to make your online <a href=”” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow noopener”>Father’s Day card</a>.

Do you see where it says “rel =nofollow” in the link?

How to Check Dofollow and Nofollow Links

After making dofollow and nofollow links, it’s important to check them. 

This ensures you changed the code correctly and the link works. 

In the event people are paying you to add links, you need to make sure their links work. Don’t risk getting a bad reputation and losing future business.

Checking the link is easy:

In Draft mode, click preview. Then, click the link you altered to make sure it takes you to the desired URL.

Wrapping Up:

This post covered:

What is a do follow link

Dofollow backlinks 2018 strategies that still work

How to make a link nofollow

Dofollow backlinks list

In closing, the best link profiles have a combination of dofollow and nofollow backlinks.

If you have any doubts about whether you followed this tutorial correctly, link checkers exist.

Takeaways about the two kinds of free backlinks

This guide explained

The difference between the two kinds of free backlinks

The advantages of each kind of backlink

How to create backlinks in the event someone wants a link from you instead of currency

Using dofollow backlinks smacks of “Black Hat SEO” which are not considered Google best practices.

How to make a link nofollow

In addition to these strategies, this post gave you a dofollow backlink site list.

However, in the event you choose to give free backlinks to people, whether they are nofollow SEO or dofollow backlinks, now you know how.

Your Google ranking will not suffer a Google penalty if you follow these tips. Use a rank checker for peace of mind to make sure.

What are you waiting for? Go start link building.

Readers, please share so other bloggers put in the position of being asked for dofollow backlinks or nofollow SEO backlinks know the difference and how to create backlinks if they choose.

Have you ever been put in the position I was? Have you ever been asked for dofollow backlinks or nofollow SEO links? I look forward to reading about your experiences with link building strategies in the comments section.


How to Make a Post Link Do Follow in WordPress

  1. Ryan Biddulph | at 3:39 am

    I’m a fan Janice of bloggers earning DoFollow links on my blog, by gaining my trust. Gaining trust involves publishing helpful content and showing you earned your success by building a big, loyal tribe. I offered you a guest posting opp because you checked both marks 😉

    • Janice Wald | at 7:59 am

      Hi Ryan,
      I’m glad to hear you approve of dofollow links under certain conditions since I heard it’s a controversial practice.
      Thank you for the compliments. They mean a great deal.
      Thanks for commenting as well.

  2. Pingback: Shared: Backlinking That Drives Effective Web Traffic
  3. Janice Wald | at 8:12 am

    Hi Jeanette,
    I genuinely appreciate all your social shares. Thank you!
    They say bloggers should try to solve problems for their readers.
    If someone feels they want to give someone a dofollow link, they need to know how (or vice versa).
    I’m glad you agree this post can help bloggers change links.
    Thanks for writing to tell me.

  4. Faizan | at 10:56 am

    I wonder you have made it so simple for me Janice.
    Until today I was using a plugin called relnofollow, but you’ve showed how to convert any link manually.

    But one yhing I’ve never given any site no follow link, pretty lucrative but it’s true.. Hahaha

    Thanks for a great information

  5. Barbara Radisavljevic | at 1:01 pm

    I had no idea that WordPress links were no follow by default. I’ve been using a plugin to make affiliate links nofollow and even then Yoast tells me all my links are follow when it does its evaluation. I confess I hate working in code view. I’ll take another look at the text view on some of these posts and try to see why Yoast is calling my nofollow links follow links. I see from your post there are a few links besides affiliate links I need to make nofollow.

    • Janice Wald | at 2:50 pm

      Hi Barbara,
      I don’t like working in code view either, but if you save this tutorial, you can just follow these instructions when the need arises. It sounds like my tutorial gave you some things to think about.
      I’m glad. Thanks for writing.

  6. Enstine Muki | at 3:22 pm

    Happy Sunday Janice.
    It’s been a busy Sunday and it’s 11:10 pm here. I just got in a few minutes ago. Though busy, it was exciting as I spent time with awesome friends after fellowship

    Thanks for the beautiful mention and the education on these link tags. I have a simple plugin that allows me to add the nofollow tag using a graphical interface. See what it looks like here:

    This is a simple solution that doesn’t necessitate digging into the text version of the post as this may get newbies quite confused.

    I hope you are having a wonderful weekend as well
    Enstine Muki recently posted…Keyword Anticipation ~ What is it and how to effectively use it!My Profile

    • Janice Wald | at 3:24 pm

      Hi Enstine,
      Thank you for contributing to the dialogue by telling us about this tool. It was my pleasure to mention you.
      Thank you for writing. I am glad you had a nice day.

  7. Vicky | at 7:04 pm

    It’s fine to give dofollowlinks as long as you trust the site, and it’s not an affiliate link. It’s not considered black hat to give dofollow links. I would not bother to ask for comments or anything in exchange. You’re not helping yourself by giving nofollow links, in fact, if your blog has a lot of nofollow links going out it makes the blog look like it’s linking to untrustworthy sites.

    • Janice Wald | at 7:32 pm

      What an interesting perspective. Thank you for sharing this. I am glad to hear. There are times when I do give out do follow links. I’m glad to hear that it’s not black hat SEO. I was almost afraid to put it in writing LOL.

    • Janice Wald | at 12:03 am

      Hi Rahul,
      Do you mind sharing how you build the do follow back links? I would appreciate your contribution to our discussion this way. I know I would be interested and I’m sure others would too.

  8. Hiby | at 9:41 am

    Haha, I used to think no matter what link, google will pick it up (since it’s text url) but seems like its not.
    Thanks for the clear explaination, Janice.

  9. Moss Clement | at 11:59 am

    I must say thanks a lot for this incredible tutorial, Janice. I just publish a post a few hours ago where I also hinted on getting backlinks. I will link to this post to help others find it. Although I have no been asked for a do follow backlink, I tried the tip a few months ago after I read a similar article. But I ended up using the relnofollow plugin because when after inserting a link and clicked the text version, I was overwhelm. You’ve made it a lot easier, Janice.

    Thanks for sharing.

    • Janice Wald | at 12:06 pm

      Hi Moss,
      First of all, thank you in advance for linking to my tutorial! Please send it to me on Twitter when you do and I’ll retweet for you.
      Second, how odd– you’ve never been asked for a dofollow link. I am asked for them all the time, today in fact!
      Third, I only found out there was a plugin to change the link recently.
      I’ve been doing it manually for a long time following the (easy) directions I shared.
      Thanks for the compliments on my tutorial, your comments, and again for offering to link to my post.
      Janice Wald recently posted…Inspire Me Monday Linky Party #187My Profile

  10. Lauren | at 8:41 am

    Hey, Janice! Thanks for your tutorial, it’s helpful indeed. You’ve mentioned SE Ranking in your blog – have you used this SEO platform before? Any recommendations?

  11. Ryan Smith | at 4:21 am

    Hi Janice

    To get a proper free backlink is not an easy task and going for Paid is definitely not at all a good idea as a paid link will affect the ranking, not in a good way. Initially, we can see paid Link will increase your ranking but in a long run, it would do more harm than good.
    Your Article is really impressive and thanks for Explaining all the do follow and no follow in details. I will Definitely follow what you have instructed in the blog.

    Thank you.

  12. Rich | at 6:35 pm

    Another great post! It is good to have a mix of do follow and no follow backlinks in your backlinks profile. Do follow backlinks do pass more Google juice. The only times you’ll have problems with do follow links is if the site ending the backlink is not trustworthy, the site is not relevant to your website, you are using keywords as anchor text for most of your do follow backlinks, or if your back link is site-wide, in other words placed in the sidebar or the footer. Using your name as the anchor text when you receive a backlink from commenting is a good way to increase your anchor text to diversity.

  13. kelly | at 12:45 am

    I think no-follow links also play very well role in serp now a days seen lots of blog ranking good with only no-follow backlink do follow or no follow but links matter to increase site authority and trust in front of google eyes

  14. Cheryl | at 4:40 am

    Hello, Thanks for sharing this great article,
    I like your way of explanation, keep sharing!
    It would surely help me to push our business into a search engine.

  15. Mia | at 2:53 am

    Thanks – this is a pretty interesting scenario.
    I agree that No Follow links do not pass value. I do, however, agree that they can be seen as an authority single and indirectly increase rankings. ?

  16. Softbenz | at 2:43 am

    Thanks for the awesome article. Backlinks are without doubt a major ranking factor on Search Engine. But why most of the blog post comment are set to nofollow nowdays?

    • Janice Wald | at 4:03 pm

      Hi Softbenz,
      Thank you for commenting on my dofollow tutorial. To answer your question: People are concerned they’ll get into trouble with Google if they give dofollows. However, I heard it’s only “illegal” if you have a financial relationship with the company to which you’re giving the dofollow.

  17. Joel | at 6:42 am

    I have a customer requesting a dofollow backlink from one of our product pages. How can this be done in Shopify? Is it different from an actual website and WordPress?

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