I had heard of this term and whenever I embed a link I see the option, but honestly I wasn't really sure if/when to choose nofollow. However, I was a bit troubled that I was running afoul of the policy based on these two statements:
- Buying or selling links that pass PageRank. This includes exchanging money for links, or posts that contain links; exchanging goods or services for links; or sending someone a “free” product in exchange for them writing about it and including a link
- Using automated programs or services to create links to your site
I knew the buying/selling was a no-no, but it was the "sending someone a 'free' product" that gave me pause. As a book blogger, I often receive a free book to review, which then I write about and occasionally provide a link to the author. I always include a buy link to the book.
In my blogging group we discussed this topic a little and Melissa of Keeping Up with the Rheinlander's helped me to better understand when to mark a link as nofollow.
- When a product I've gotten free is involved and I'm linking to the product or author
- Links that I receive possible payment from - affiliate links
- Any links that were placed for payment - Book Blasts and sponsored giveaway posts
If you, like me, have been a little confused about doFollow and noFollow policy, I hope I've made it somewhat clearer. And, again, I thank Melissa for her assistance.