Link Exchange

Definition: You agree to link to another site, in exchange for them linking back to you.

You will hear hundreds of people say that reciprocal linking is good for gaining search engine rankings, though, you will also hear hundreds of people say it only harms your rankings, well, both are true, but lets dig deeper than that.

Rule of thumb: Reciprocal linking should only be done for traffic and to benefit the content of a site, not rankings, the rankings will come if done right. You may read a lot about reciprocal linking being the most beneficial method of getting a high rank, BUT, remember Google is always changing and the sites you are reading from could be a couple of years old.

How to exchange links

Link exchanging should only be done if your purpose is to build a content rich, useful site. You need only to include links to outside sources if they are;

1. Relevant to your sites content

2. To a reputable site, no link farms!

3. Preferably to a high PageRank site

4. Using keywords as the hyperlink text. Links should always be keyword rich text

5. Going to keep the returned link to your site active (check it constantly)

Do Not!

1. Create a reciprocal links page purely for gaining PageRank

2. Link to Link Farms

3. Link exchange with completely unrelated sites just for gaining a link

4. Write anything on your site about free link exchange, Google sees this a an artificial source of gaining ranks and penalise for it.

Sources for good link exchange

Business partners

Many industry partners are familiar with exchanging links or at least with the importance of promoting sites using the search engines, so they may be more receptive to a discussion on the topic. It never hurts to send an email explaining the benefits of this win-win situation.

Suppliers / Manufacturers / Distributors / Vendors / Clients

Your manufacturers are a great place to start building links. Often your manufacturers have established websites that are highly relevant to your product lines. Take the time to call your manufactures. Speak to them about your site and request a link exchange.

Other link exchange sources:

  • Local businesses and regional organizations who may want to support you and your business efforts.
  • Find sites on the Web that are similar to yours.

Go back each month through the list of sites you’ve agreed to trade links with, and double check that they are still listing you on their site. If not, remove the link.


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