Not so fast.
It’s a great idea to post links (if they’re relevant to the context) to generate live visitors, but most of the places you might freely be able to post online might also have an SEO roadblock up called the ‘nofollow’ attribute.
A link that is tagged as ‘nofollow’ works like any other link to a human, but it tells the search engines NOT to follow or index the link, hence no SEO credit for the targeted site.
Now why would they go and do that?
The original purpose of the attribute was to mitigate spamming on blogs. Black-hat SEO specialists were using blog comments to inject their links into unrelated blogs and were essentially obliterating legitimate comments.
Most blogs now automatically mark links in their comments as ‘nofollow’ for this reason. In fact the majority of sites where you have the ability to freely post your content have adopted the ‘nofollow’ attribute - Facebook, YouTube, Linkedin, Craigslist, Zillow, Realtor.com, the majority of real estate listing sites and just about all blog commenting.
How do I know if a link is marked ‘nofollow’?
Easy. Right click on any web page and select ‘View source’ or ‘View page source’. You’ll see a page of HTML code. Hit control-F (Ctrl-F) to open your Find function and type ‘nofollow’. Or type in the anchor text of the link you want to analyze. If the link is a ‘nofollow’ link, you will see the code embedded in the link structure between the <a> tags.
<a rel="Nofollow" name="Website" target="_blank" href="http://XXXX-XXXXXXXX.realtor.com">View Agent's Website</a>