Gutenberg users are requesting an easy way to add a nofollow attribute to links in the block editor. Users can currently toggle a setting to designate a link to open in a new tab, but a similarly user-friendly option for adding a nofollow attribute is not yet available.
Requests have come in across multiple issues on GitHub, as well as in the WordPress Gutenberg Editor group on Facebook. For example, one blogger asked for advice today after not finding any Gutenberg-compatible nofollow plugins:
Has anyone found an easy way to add a nofollow attribute to links using Gutenberg other than editing the HTML for every single link?
I used to have a checkbox for nofollow plugin but it seems that none of the plugins I’ve found are compatible with Gutenberg.
As a blogger, I need to add nofollows often to remain compliant with FTC requirements for sponsored/affiliate links.
Others requesting the feature in issues filed on the Gutenberg repository are looking for an easier way to make their links compliant with Google and other major search engines’ requests that marketers add nofollow to links that are part of an endorsement or commercial relationship.
“On behalf of the hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people who make money with their website with affiliate programs and sponsored content: please, make it easy for us to add the nofollow rel attribute to a link,” Renee Dobbs requested in her first ever issue opened on Github.
“I honestly don’t know why it isn’t a part of WordPress core. Every WordPress commercial I see lately is about having your business on WordPress, yet WP is making it difficult for business owners to be compliant with Google’s guidelines on paid/affiliate links. We shouldn’t have to add yet another plugin to handle something so basic and widely used. Just have a checkbox or similar (like open to new window) to add the nofollow rel attribute for a link.”
Gutenberg contributors have worked on a couple different solutions for getting this feature added to the editor. Alexander Botteram, a developer at Yoast, opened a PR that adds a new “nofollow” toggle setting to the core link modal. Gutenberg phase 2 lead Riad Benguella recommended this as a first step towards making links more extensible.
The PR is still undergoing review but it looks like a promising solution with the UI that users are requesting.