This is a pretty boring post but it might be relevant to anyone doing SEO for travel sites.
I’ve noticed a few links I’ve got on lonelyplanet.com have had nofollow’s added to them. These aren’t links I’ve dropped in the forum of anything like that, its the proper links which the editors have handpicked for each location. If you look at the Mallorca guide page (yeah I nofollowed that link!) those links in the article have had the rel=nofollow tag applied to them.
- Are editorially researched by professional travel journalists
- Offer key information not covered by the page
- Are reproduced in print (once you’ve printed a book you can’t go back and nofollow it)
If big trusted sites like this keep making ill informed SEO decisions its going to make Google’s job more difficult because they’ll have to work out which nofollows to obey and which to ignore. After all following the link path from editorial trust centres like lonelyplanet.com is still the cornerstone of the algorithm. It wouldn’t be so bad if lonelyplanet had anything to gain from it but I think its unanimously agreed now that trying to hog PageRank in this way doesn’t help you in the slightest.