What is Sitelinks and How to Demote Sitelinks URL?
Sitelinks are the navigational links shown along with the search result which helps users directly go to that particular page.
Example of Sitelinks
Here is an example of a Sitelink shown in Google for the keyword “Bing”.
Other search engines also display same kind of Sitelinks, for example Bing refers the Sitelinks as Deep Links and shows them in the search results. Below is an example of Bing search for the keyword “Bing”:
How to Create a Sitelink?
Currently there is no option for webmasters to submit Sitelinks for their site to search engines in webmaster tools account. Search engines automatically analyze the site’s link structure and display it in the search results. But webmasters can use appropriate informative alt text and anchor text to increase the possibility of automatic Sitelinks.
Demoting a Sitelink URL in Google
Since the Sitelinks are auto generated by search engines it may not be always perfect. If you see it is not required or inappropriate to shown certain Sitelinks then you can demote the links from Google search results using your webmaster tools account.
- Login to your Google webmaster tools account.
- You must have added and verified your site in order to use this feature.
- Navigate to “Sitelinks” section under “Search Appearance” menu.
- You can see two input boxes.
- Enter the URL in the input box “For this search result”. This is the URL displayed in the search result; you can leave this box empty if the you want to demote the Sitelinks for your site’s home page.
- Enter the Sitelink URL in the input box “Demote this Sitelink URL”. This is the Sitelink URL displayed along with the search result.
- Click on the “Demote” button.
Example of Demoting a Sitelink for a URL
Assume your site URL “http://www.your-site-name.com/this-is-my-site.html” is showing Sitelinks in the search results as shown below:
You want to remove the “Login” link with the destination URL “http://www.your-site-name.com/login-page.html”. Enter the details as below in the Demote link section of Google webmaster tools:
Limitations of Demoting a Sitelink
- There are no ways for webmasters to control the display or removal of Sitelinks from search results.
- Even you demote a Sitelink it is not guaranteed that Google will remove it from the search results.
- It may take several days for your demotion to take effect, hence you can’t immediately control over the Sitelinks.
- Maximum of 100 URLs can be used for demotion.
- Demotion is valid only for 90 days and will expire automatically. Hence you need to demote again the same URL.