Jun 18, 2009June 2009 is the month for cat out of the bag with use of rel=nofollow on page links. Link nofollow changes were made over a year ago in the algo, but not specifically talked about till now by Google.
Matt Cutts talked at SMX advanced, and had a number of interviews where he specifically talked about how Google assigns Google PR when it encounters rel=nofollows.
Is what is Good for Google, good for SEO?
Matt: You can think of it as evaporating.
So should you continue to use nofollows on your website? Personally I don't like the idea of any Google PR being wasted. So what other means are there of stopping Google from assigning PR from a link?
- Don't use rel=nofollow on internal links within your website since you might as well get Google PR to that page, and then from that page recirculated to the rest of your website
- Make sure that there is only one url per physical page. If you use nofollow to stop Google following other url's that reference the same page, you are better to use the canonical method on that target page (to tell Google what the proper url for that page is).
- If you want to have a website address listed on your site, but are concerned about Google considering it paid, use nofollow
- If you don't like the idea of links on a page, just use the text - ie www.website.co.nz rather than an actual link. Then people can decide to go to that link by their copying into the browser, but no PR will be lost. I consider that this is the new form of nofollow, especially for blogs that would otherwise use nofollows.
I have yet to remove the nofollows on this website, now on the todo list. There is no harm in continuing to use them, just lost opportunity.