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Dofollow vs Nofollow: Learn and Understand the Differences

Last updated: Jun 09, 2023

What is Dofollow?

Dofollow is an attribute given to backlinks on websites. It allows Google's crawler robot to search for and index backlinks planted on websites.

Google uses dofollow as one of the determining factors for ranking on the SERPs because this attribute has the quality and feasibility of being a reference for others.

The more dofollow from the best and most relevant websites, the more Google will place the website in the top ranking of search results.

What is Nofollow?

If dofollow gives crawler robots access to browse and index backlinks planted on websites, then nofollow is the opposite.

Nofollow is an attribute given to backlinks on websites to tell crawler robots not to browse these links. The crawler robot will consider the backlink an ordinary link.

Overall, these attributes do not have a direct effect on SEO performance or website ranking. However, nofollow is often used to control irrelevant, sponsored, or paid links.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Dofollow

One of the points in the dofollow vs nofollow discussion can be seen in the way we use them. The use of dofollow has advantages and disadvantages, namely:


Robot crawlers that browse websites play an important role in helping to increase rankings on the SERP. Being in the top ranking helps the website get organic traffic and increases user trust.


It's like a double-edged knife; besides being able to increase a website's ranking, dofollow also has the potential to reduce it.

This can happen if the crawler robot finds dofollow backlinks from spam websites in very large numbers. As a result, Google will penalize the website.

In addition, dofollow gives authority to the page that receives the link. Websites have less control over links, which influence the reputation and ranking of web pages.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Nofollow

Another point of view is needed to discuss dofollow vs nofollow. This time, we give you an explanation of nofollow's advantages and disadvantages, namely:


Even though nofollow is not counted as a backlink that can increase a website's position on search pages, nofollow has an important role in link diversification.

In addition, this attribute can play a role in improving the user experience by making it easier to find important information mentioned on other websites.

Nofollow also gives the website full control over backlinks. Full control can protect the website from spam or unwanted links.


Nofollow does not contribute directly to the SEO strategy. This attribute cannot establish the authority and relevance of the page providing the link. 

Dofollow vs Nofollow: Understand the Differences

Now we've come to the main discussion about dofollow vs nofollow. The two attributes have several differences that can be seen from several angles, such as goals, SEO values, crawling, indexing, anchor tag attributes, and backlink ratios. Here's an explanation of each:

1. Purpose

The main goal of dofollow is to have a positive influence on website rankings on the SERP. Google considers these attributes to build authority and relevance.

On the other hand, the main purpose of nofollow is to control pagerank and not directly affect website ranking. Avoid having a direct influence on website rankings.

2. Nilai SEO

The next point worth noting in the discussion of dofollow vs nofollow is their SEO values. 

Dofollow can have a direct impact on SEO. Robotic crawlers use it to crawl, index linked pages, and give websites authority.

Meanwhile, nofollow does not have a direct effect on SEO. This is because crawler robots ignore this attribute when crawling websites.

3. Crawling

The difference between dofollow and nofollow can also be seen in crawling activity by crawler robots. The crawler robot will scour dofollow to find information and index the linked page. Conversely, nofollow is not crawled at the time of crawling.

4. Indexing

Another difference between dofollow and nofollow can be seen in the indexing process. Website pages linked to dofollow will be indexed by search engines and can appear in search results. 

On the other hand, pages linked with nofollow will not be indexed directly by Google, unless they have other sources pointing to them.

5. Anchor Tag Attribute

Dofollow does not require a special attribute on the anchor tag. On the other hand, nofollow requires a "rel=nofollow" attribute on the anchor tag.

This attribute will give instructions to the robot crawler that the link should be considered nofollow.

6. Backlink Ratio

In order for a website to have SEO value and a good website ranking, the backlinks contained in it must have a more dominant dofollow number than nofollow.

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