Social Bookmarking Sites Which Don’t Use NoFollow : Bookmarks and Search Engines

Social bookmarking allows web users to search, share, organize, and store the bookmarks of different web pages. This can be done publicly or privately (in private groups), or a combination of the two. People who are allowed to view the bookmarks can view them using a variety of different functions to sort and tag them.

Most of the services that provide social bookmarking encourage you to organize bookmarks with informal tags. They allow bookmarks to be viewed with their associations to the tag, including information on the users that bookmarked those sites. Some services will even have RSS feeds for their lists, and you will be alerted when new bookmarks are shared, tagged, or saved.

The tagging and descriptions used in bookmarking is referred to as external meta data and can have huge benefits in SEO, because the information used in the tagging is not controlled by the site owners, but by the public. In essence, the information in external meta tags should be much more valuable than external inbound link anchor text or directory co citation. Especially if there are hundreds or thousands of users tagging these sites.

NoFollow is a non-standard HTML attribute value which is used to police the outbound link value of user generated content, especially blog commenting. NoFollow is used to communicate with search engines to tell them that a link should not be used to pass on link juice, or “PageRank”.

The idea is that it will help reduce people who spam links, making sure that search engines get better results when keywords are searched, and many social bookmarking sites havee implemented this strategy. However, there are social bookmarking sites that do not use nofollow in their HTML tags, and this is important for you to understand when you are developing your social SEO strategies.

Social Bookmarking Sites Which Don’t Use NoFollow

  1. Listible is a newer social bookmarking site, and it is very random. You can start a list about anything from TV theme songs to Firefox extensions. Users can then rate items and leave their comments.
  2. Furl, one of the services offered by LookSmart, allows you to copy web pages and then save, search, and share them. This social bookmarking site is great for everything from job searches to research papers to shopping lists. You can access Furl from any computer, and your favorites are always accessible.
  3. Yahoo My Web 2.0 Beta is a social search engine, meaning that people and the search engine technology work in harmony to create the optimum search experience. You can browse by keyword or search out interesting subjects. It offers you a way to bookmark and network simultaneously.
  4. Propeller is a hybrid of social bookmarking and social news sharing, with a voting system like Digg and hot stories, but it’s also owned by AOL, uses organic links in its stories, and also includes bookmark style tagging.
  5. Flickr gives social bookmarking a different spin – the site is all about photos. You can upload and tag your favorites, and then other users can bookmark them and share them with their friends. You can even leave comments as to why you like or do not like a particular image. Flickr lets its users place an HTML link in their photo descriptions – perfect for high rankings and relevant link juice.
  6. can get a little crazy and confusing, since it is open for anyone to post sites and leave comments. The users of are not shy about telling the world how they feel about different sites (especially if your story or ‘bookmark’ makes the homepage after receiving enough votes), and most of the posts are featured around technology items.
  7. Technorati Faves is a great place to bookmark sites on an authority social site without having the use of NoFollow cast a shadow on your links.
  8. Slashdot is the original when it comes to social bookmarking sites. Slashdot offers both personal bookmarks and summaries of stories which may or may not be approved to make it to the homepage. Users can submit links and stories and have other users leave comments. Submissions do have to be pre-approved, which is a downside for some users.
  9. Searchles is a social bookmarking oriented search engine with tagging, video upload, groups and voting. It’s also run by a search company, DumbFind, so they’ve made it extra search engine friendly.

Know of any more social bookmarking sites which don’t use NoFollow? Add some in the comments at the end of this post.

With your knowledge of the top social bookmarking sites that do not use nofollow, you can appropriately add these to your linking strategy. Remember, if a social bookmarking sites uses nofollow links, then your website will not garner the link juice benefits from these backlinks.

The Real Power of Social Bookmarks

However, don’t overlook the power of social bookmarking, especially for the major sites which use NoFollow, because their tags and external meta data can still be used to qualify and classify major sites. and StumbleUpon should be your major social bookmarking sites to join because even if you don’t get the longterm link benefits of a No Follow, you’ll have the long term benefits of external meta data, votes and traffic (Delicious and StumbleUpon combined drove about 10,000 users to this story about using Images in Blog Posts over the past two days.)

Here’s a recap from a story I did in August about the direct influence of social bookmarking on search engines (read the whole thing).

How Search Engines Can Use Social Bookmarks

Monitoring social bookmarking services like, StumbleUpon and Ma.gnolia can help search engines in multiple ways by:

  • Indexing Sites Faster : Humans bookmark sites launched by their friends or colleagues before a search engine bot can find them.
  • Deeper Indexing : Many pages bookmarked are deep into sites and sometimes not as easily linked to by others, found via bad or nonexistent site navigation or linked to from external pages.
  • Defining Quality : If someone takes the time to bookmark a site, it usually has some quality to it.
  • Measuring Quality : Essentially if more users bookmark a page, the more quality and relevance that site has. A site with multiple bookmarks across multiple bookmarking services by multiple users is much more of an authority than a site with only several bookmarks by the same user.
  • External Meta Data : Users who bookmark sites tag them with keywords and descriptions which add an honest and unbiased definition which is created by the public and not the owner of the site.
  • Co Citation : Social bookmarking sites tend to categorize sites and pages based upon the tags used by humans to describe the site; therefore search algortihms can classify these sites with their peers.

In addition, by indexing the social measurement variables such as commenting and votes at Digg, Reddit, Netscape and various niche oriented (all of those Pligg powered hubs), search engine algorithms can also benefit from social news sharing sites by:

  • Number of Votes : Similar to the number of bookmarks, the more votes a page receives on Digg or Reddit, the more useful that information usually is. If the same page receives multiple votes across multiple social news voting sites, the higher quality the site.
  • Categorization : Like Co Citation, categorization can help define the subject of a site, therefore better helping the engine address searcher intent.
  • Commenting : The number of comments can be compared to the number of votes, the higher the comment to voting ratio, the more relevant the news story or site was to the user; therefore, more relevant to the searcher.
  • Relevant Sites : Techmeme and Propeller (and hopefully soon Digg) suggest relevant pages and sites to the stories which make their ‘popular’ categorical pages via intra-linking or blog index monitoring. Engines can learn from these projects to help users find alternative or relevant selections in their search results.

To the best of my knowledge, no search engines are currently implementing all of these theories into their current algorithms, but we cannot overlook that Microsoft and Google are/were partners of Digg, Yahoo owns and AOL runs Propeller (Netscape). These social services also offer API’s and are completely open to search spidering, which makes these variables mentioned above available to search engines for the taking.

Loren Baker
Loren Baker is the Founder of SEJ, an Advisor at Alpha Brand Media and runs Foundation Digital, a digital marketing strategy & development agency.
Loren Baker

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174 thoughts on “Social Bookmarking Sites Which Don’t Use NoFollow : Bookmarks and Search Engines

  1. Thanks for the list but I think it would be a good idea for SEJ to explore the effectiveness of no-follow.
    Many of us are not convinced that Google are able to do as much with no-follow as they’d have us believe.

  2. Check out this firefox add-0n — shareaholic (available at enables you to track digg and submissions. useful.

  3. Once SEO’ers found the importance of inbound linking, link farms and paid directories came to be. Now, Google (among others) panelize link farms and links from paid directories. Looking to the future, what would stop SEO’ers from creating “social bookmarking farms”? If this happens, the power of social bookmarking will be diluted.

  4. Yes Adult DVD Store Online, unfortunately Blogger does use no-follow tags. The tags are automatically generated in user comments. In their Blog they say it’s due to comment spam. Here’s the post. I used the no follow tag on that link just for spite because they’re already at the top of the list.
    Brian Hawkins

  5. I wish it wasn’t but Search Engine Optomization (SEO),
    is a part of a webmasters life. SEO is the daily battle
    to keep ahead of the search engines, especially Google.
    It is very much like a Salmon swimming upstream. Every 3
    months Google changes everything in the way they do
    things as far a their search results go (SERP). That only
    means I have to throw out the window at least 1/3 of the
    things I was doing to get their attention. One thing that
    always works is back links from other web sites. Up at
    the top of the comment section here there is a place for
    your Name and Your Website. That is there in case people
    would like to go to see what you are all about. On any
    other web site that link would also count as a backlink if
    Google ever came over here and spotted it. Google insists
    that blogs have a word called “NOFOLLOW” in their code so
    it knows not to count that address as a back link. So I
    looked around and found a little piece of software that
    defeats the NOFOLLOW code under the Name. It is a Word
    Press Plug In that you install in your wp-content/plugin
    directory and just activate in your plug in admin site.
    Easy and fast. To get this for yourself just go to the web
    site under my name and look for the nofollow button and
    download and unzip the code. Don’t forget that if a person
    gets a link he is more liable to come back and make more
    comments. The more comments you get the more people Google
    will send. Have fun. Bob

  6. Slashdot uses nofollow at least partially. To get sure whether the site uses nofollow just check the source code of a target page.

  7. no-follow is a no-go.
    seriously SEO seems to be art of making people believe ANYTHING will have an impact on their SERP.
    Everything scales periodically to shift those who try the commonly termed black-hat approach to fail. Why not focus on proper content, proper site building, and genuine links? Probably because thats not SEO. Thats common sense. Your not trying to bluff your results, your not trying to decypher the SE’s algorithm, your not charging others for the fake attempts to get their listing higher.

    SEO is a royal joke. That seems lures a large number of tools to play its game.

  8. Good point on Digg and Stumble Upon. Just because the NOFOLLOW attribute may be applied to links, does not mean that it is useless as a marketing strategy. It juat might not help your short term goals for SEO.

  9. I believe there is some value in no-follow links, although they don’t directly pass any “link juice” they still appear to have a small effect on rankings.

    Also it mixes things up a bit in your link profile.

    Every little bit heaps 😉

  10. I am not sure about this but, I guess, Sphinn also doesn’t have a No follow tag on the links on the Web pages.

    Am new to SEO and not very sure how it works, but I wasnt able to see any No Follow attribute in the Page Source on Sphinn, except for the Ads!

    Please correct me if I am wrong!

  11. If you bookmark a site from lets say stumbleupon (using nofollow), than you probably will be less likely to also link to it from your site or blog, and therefore, that site will not get PR juice. Even if you link from your blog, Blogger and WordPress have by default nofollow, and I think typepad too. MOST bloggers probably don’t even know or care about nofollow issue. Therefore, since the introduction of nonstandard nofollow tag, ‘natural’ links are diminishing more and more.

    There is more to the PageRank story:

  12. Nofollow is definitely a nofollow for the google spiders. there are always these myths, that noffollow-tags do not matter or at least there is a bit of linkjuice passing.
    A german SEO did a test over months and after months, some selected sites, which which received links with a nofollow-tag did not appear in the Google-results – no effect whatsoever…
    The link to this experiment (in german):

  13. There are some interesting points on this thread. I have to agree with D up above. The real solution to this is to actually provide something of value and maybe promote it a little. The links will come if value is there to begin with. It is not SEO science, it is common sense.

  14. Our website, SiN2.0, was produced to allow people to find the best stuff in the adult world, but also to help noobs get some links for their new, but still remarkable, website. No NOFOLLOW here…

  15. Wow that sucks, didn’t realize SU didn’t use following links, either way though it helped my search rankings enormously (from yahoo, no google help yet). Within one day I got like 400 hits from StumbleUpon and from there I went from not within 1000 for any keyword on yahoo to #1 search placement for a keyword with 109 million competitors.

  16. Great information, I’m already using a few of this techniques but I’ll look into the rest of them as well and see if they are relevant to my site, for instance technorati is a service people have suggested to me, yet I don’t have a blog.

  17. William, I think a site which uses a redirected link is not more useful than a site with a “nofollow” attribute. In any case, NPGB is not so bad 😉

  18. hi loren….great article. great tips. thank you, thank you & thanks again.

    much of my marketing is done via videos posted to youtube, myspace & about 25 other video sites. as you know, these video sites assign a unique URL to each video.

    do you reckon that posting these URL’s (with title, tags, etc.) to social bookmarking sites will increase the SE ranking of these videos?

    thanks in advance for the professional advice. regards, joe

    ps. all comments welcome.

  19. Hi thanks for the list. But I have a question. If I want to put social bookmarking sites book mark icon on my own site then from where I can get code for this? and can I modify it in my own way? I want to put social media icons at the footer of my site in a row. So please assist me.


  20. Giok,
    Trust me. I have tested the quality of such social bookmarking websites, and they have a hugh impact on your SERP ranking…
    Have a great day,

  21. Very good article. The importance of social bookmarking has long been overlooked. Just the power of many links in Myspace can have a dramatic impact on traffic.

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  23. This is an incredibly useful list – we need to find somewhere to keep it continually updated when we find nofollow bookmarking sites. I know LinkedIn lets you keep 3 nofollow links with anchor text on your profile page.

  24. Excellent social/personal bookmark organizational site to check out: Xerpi. Organic, visual system of drag& drop menus, access to community public favorites allows you to quickly tailor your ‘web surfs’ to your ‘web-favs’. Also features some very helpful and efficient navigation tools that keep your mouse clicks to a minimum. Go to

  25. Plenty of bloggers are moving towards dofollow which is a good move. I’m not sold on delicious and stumble for every industry however. I use digg and propeller quite a lot to get pages indexed.

  26. I m new to all this blog and search engine stuff. recently completed a diploma in web designing so i was trying my hands on blogs and was researching on this link love and link juice and this no follow stuff you people are talking about. To be very honest.. this blog really helped me in knowing a lot about how this no follow and link stuff works and it also guided me to the right places to find it . so who ever is behind this wonderful blog i wanna thank him a lot… nancy

  27. Take a look at, a new online system that allows you to easily access, categorize, share and store your bookmarks online.It is free to join and registration is both quick and easy. Discover a whole new world of social bookmarking.

  28. The DoFollow sites I really love are,, and – love the traffic. Also, keep in mind that as of a few weeks ago or so StumbleUpon is NOW a DoFollow site. So Stumble your site if you haven’t already!

  29. Hi Loren , I have done a little research and although many Pligg based Social Networking / Bookmarkers don’t use the rel – no follow attribute in their links ( as can be checked manually or by various tools ) the linked URLs seemed to be re directed by script , which means many spiders can’t follow them , this is not the same as the no follow tag on the hyperlink itself Some one who knows the pligg code and also how re direction effects links , may be able to shed some light — for instance Furl appears to be “do follow” , but have never seen INlinks appear for it Also thanks for the continued high quality articles

  30. It neat to see how some of these social bookmarking sites are holding up. May because of the rush to bookmark sites, some of the sites are having issues holding up. Thanks for the nice list … will dofollow on the links

  31. Thanks for the great list and in depth explanation of these sites. I found it extremely helpful as I am new to SEO.

  32. Furl has doesn’t implement nofollow, but all the links are internal > redirect links… so it doesn’t help.

  33. Loren , you put a nofollow on your link’s from your own flickr account, why would you do that? are you building trust with google ? :0 rather than looking for a link?

  34. I am the webmaster of which is into Shared & Dedicated Web Hosting . I am currently working on to promore our website on the web through SEO and is busy in searching for as much information as possible related to various SEO practices. I found this article of extreme importance. Thanks a lot.

  35. Re-reading this article, I was always resonated with
    “In essence, the information in external meta tags should be much more valuable than external inbound link anchor text or directory co citation.”

    True power of social bookmark is , I believe
    when it is harnessed beyond individual online storage for bookmarks. Vivid example might be a search.

    The company that I belonged to develop “Social Search Engine” with human bookmark sites,
    lexicon/index built by tags not parsed keywords,
    ranked by social factors(like human bookmark activity), not link structure.

    Please, visit us and enjoy new aspect of leveraging social bookmark assets with our public beta

  36. A very good post. No follow tags seemsis the trend. Wondering what will be the impact on link building strategy?

  37. its a very bad idea that many blogs nowadays are turning into nofollow.but they need to remeber that they are where athey are just because of linking..

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  39. It’s amazing how many do not realize or even know about nofollow sites and wonder why they are not getting the ‘exposure’ they desire. This is a great source of valuable information to be shared. Thank you for doing so.

  40. Thanks for the list of Dofollow socialbookmqarking sites. SBM brings traffic and good PR one way link to the site. SBM now becomes one of the tool of SEO Tool Case.

  41. Thanks for u sear with us this nice list bcz Do follow Bookmarking list its very useful bcz they get easily Back links, PR, Website Ranking and Traffics

  42. If you haven’t done an update to this, I think you should. Things have changed so much in the past few years. I especially noticed that Mixx only has a PR3 in this list, they seem to have moved up the ladder…

  43. Digg is using the dreaded ‘no-follow’ tag now unless you are what they refer to as a ‘trusted’ offer. I’m not quite sure how this is defined. Anyone out there know?

  44. This is useful information on the utility, or lack of, in using social bookmarking and other sites to try to promote sites. It’s a shame that the way they have to fight link-spam or comment-spam is to eliminate all benefit even to legitimate users.

    I would add my interest in seeing an update to this.

  45. Thank you for the really useful list.

    I’m a bit confused as to when this list was originally published. I fear that a number of these sites have now gone over to the “dark side” and implemented the No Follow attribute. We’ve just done some really interesting, funny blogs and I wanted to get them launched to the social media fraternity, but I don’t want to waste my time, either. Any other useful lists???

  46. I was doing a bit of Google searching to find a list of dofollow social bookmarking sites and that’s how I found your list. Thanks for putting it together.

    Didnt know about Searchies!


  47. The links usually spread to many web sites without much effort on your part. In a way, you can think of it as another form of viral or guerrilla marketing. Keep in mind, since social bookmarking links are categorized by topic with tags or keywords, traffic coming into your site is highly targeted. This ultimately brings repeat visits from qualified consumers and potential buyers.

  48. Thank you for that informative post. I really love to read articles that have good information and ideas to share to each reader.

  49. This is just a handful of sites. I seen a website that had 200 do-follow bookmarking sites and for the life of me I can't remember the url. Darn it!! At least this page came up when I tried to Google-it

  50. I read your other article about the direct influence of social media in Search Engine Rankings, very thorough and detailed examples. Good reads. I’m gonna check out these lists and put them to good use.

    Thanks for the info!