Should You be Using rel=”noreferrer noopener” on Your Web Page? Does it Affect Ranking on Google?

Should You be Using rel=”noreferrer noopener” on Your Web Page? Does it Affect Ranking on Google?

Outgoing links can have HTML tags like "noreferrer" and "noopener." What are the functions of these tags, and how may they affect your SEO efforts?


In this Rankfasta piece, I'll go through the differences between the noreferrer and noopener tags, how they differ from the nofollow tag, and how each one affects SEO.

rel=”noopener noreferrer”
rel=”noopener noreferrer”


What is the meaning of rel="noreferrer"?

A unique HTML element called rel="noreferrer" can be added to a link tag (<a>). By deleting the referrer information from the HTTP header, it stops the referrer information from being passed to the target page.


This means that traffic from links with the rel="noreferrer" property will appear as Direct Traffic rather than Referral in Google Analytics.


In HTML View, the noreferrer attribute looks like this:


<a href="" rel="noreferrer">Link to</a>


When should rel="noreferrer" be used?

When you don't want other sites to know you're referring to them, use the rel="noreferrer" property on outgoing links. I can't think of a good reason why you'd want to do this, yet it appears to be the case.


Internal links should never use the rel="noreferrer" property because it can cause problems with your Google analytics reports.


SEO with rel="noreferrer"

Including the noreferrer tag in your links has no effect on SEO. You can utilize it without fear of anything going wrong.


However, it has an indirect impact on your link-building and promotion activities for the following reasons:


Linking to other webmasters' sites is one technique to get their notice. Every day, all webmasters check their Google statistics, particularly the 'Referral traffic' section.


They will most likely check out a website's traffic and share the page on social media, follow the author, or even opt to repay the favor by connecting back.


This is beneficial to SEO, and Google even encourages it as a legitimate approach to obtain links from other websites.


Nothing will happen if you use the noreferrer tag on your links because traffic from your website will not show up in Google analytics as a 'Referral,' and other webmasters will be unaware that you have linked to them.


'Why even discuss it? I won't add it to my links, and that's the end of the story,' you might think.


The 'noreferrer' tag is added by default to all outbound links that are set to open in a 'new tab' in WordPress, which is why this issue has gained popularity.


WordPress and Noreferrer

If you're using WordPress, you should be aware that if you add an external link to your article and set it to open in a "new tab" (target=" blank"), WordPress will add rel="noopener noreferrer" to the link.


This was done to make the WordPress rich editor (TinyMCE) more secure and to avoid tabnapping and other phishing attacks.


Here's an illustration:


<a href="" target=" blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">External link</a>


As previously stated, this prevents any information from being transmitted to the new tab, and as a result, any traffic directed from your website to the linked website (by clicking the link) will not be tracked by Google Analytics.


How can I get rid of the rel="noreferrer" attribute from WordPress links?


The simplest solution to stop WordPress from adding the property to external links is to avoid opening them in a new tab. To put it another way, you want the links to open in the same window.


This is the simplest solution, but it has the disadvantage that people who click the external link will leave your website, thereby increasing your bounce rate, decreasing time on site, and so on.


However, as mobile devices now account for the bulk of traffic, you shouldn't be too concerned about people leaving your website, as the behavior of the 'new tab' on mobile makes it difficult for users to return to the old window.


There are plugins that stop WordPress from using the rel="noreferrer" attribute.


My advice is not to bother with it; simply avoid forcing external links to pen in new tabs and you'll be OK.


Affiliate and no-referrer links

Affiliate links are unaffected by Noreferrer. The reason for this is that most affiliate programs do not credit conversions based on "referral traffic," but rather on the affiliate ID provided in the link. Consider the following scenario:


<a href="/


target=" blank" rel="noreferrer noopener" "> >


So there's nothing to be concerned about.


Nofollow vs. Noreferrer: What's the Difference?

When you use rel="nofollow" on an external link, you're simply telling search engines that they shouldn't send PageRank from one page to the next. To put it another way, you're telling them to disregard that link for SEO purposes.


The distinction between nofollow and noreferrer is that noreferrer does not provide any referral data to the browser, but the link is still followed. Referral information is given to the browser using nofollow, but the link is not followed.


As a result, they are not the same. If you don't trust a link, use nofollow, and if you don't want the other site to know you linked to them, use noreferrer.


What is the meaning of rel="noopener"?

External links can have the rel="noopener" HTML element added to them. It stops the opening page from accessing the original page in any way.


An example of a link using the rel="noopener" tag is as follows:


<a href="" rel="noopener">Link to</a>


For security reasons, WordPress automatically adds this to all external links that open in a new tab, and it is suggested that you keep it.


If you are not using WordPress, you should add the rel="noopener" attribute to all external links that open in a new tab.


SEO with rel="noopener"

Because Noopener has no effect on your SEO, you may use it to improve the security of your website with confidence.


Important Takeaways

Many individuals struggle with HTML tags and properties, but this shouldn't be the case with noreferrer and noopener.


None of them can harm your SEO, so go ahead and utilize them.


These tags are automatically applied to external links that open in a new tab if you're using WordPress.


The noopener is required to improve your website's security and prevent other websites from accessing your page (through the browser session).


The noreferrer attribute is used to prevent referral data from being provided to the destination website, as well as to hide referral traffic in Google Analytics.


If you want other websites to see your website's traffic as 'Referral traffic,' don't open external links in new tabs. This will prevent WordPress from adding the properties to the links automatically, and everything will be OK.


The terms "nofollow" and "noreferrer" are not interchangeable. When the rel="nofollow" attribute is given to a link, it tells search engines that the link should not be used for SEO purposes. On the other hand, the link juice from one website to the next can be passed by Noreferrer.


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