These days most website’s out there have a little link at the very bottom with a credit to the agency or designer who created the website. It’s a practice that has been around forever among website designers – and it’s something that has been quiet the topic of debate among the SEO community. The question finally reached Google’s very own John Mueller who gave us the following answer:
I guess this kind of looks at things like with regards to unnatural links, for example.
And from our point of view, these kind of links, by default, are things where the webmaster doesn’t really place the link explicitly on their own. So this is something where I’d recommend, if you want to put your footer link there, make sure it has a nofollow link there, so that this is something that people could click on if they’re interested, but it’s seen as something that is not an editorial link by the webmaster. It’s not something that you’d have to worry about later on and say, “oh, my god. I put all these links on this website. Now Google will think I’m building an unnatural link pyramid or something crazy.”
So this is something where putting a nofollow there is definitely good practice. You don’t need to kind of not put these links there if you think that it makes sense. If that’s something that you’ve kind of decided on together with the people who are running this website in the end, then that’s something, certainly that you might want to do, but I definitely put a nofollow rule for those links.
Below is the video during which the above question get’s answered: