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Link Development Forum

This 32 message thread spans 2 pages: 32 ( [1] 2 > >     


 6:53 pm on May 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

I've looked into some link management software but I have a hard time relinquishing control of most aspects of the link development chain.

Nevertheless, there are many people who use this software, and apparently it works for them. One thing I find handy is the ability to check up on your link partners.

Without getting into specifics:
There are many here who like this software:

  • how do you put it to work to make things easier?
  • What functions saves you time
  • what can you live without
  • and what functions would you like to see?

What's your opinion?



 6:56 pm on May 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

I've never used any linkdev software (other than my handy Excel templates).

To me, it seems as if there is a tipping point that you would need the linkdev software. An arbitrary (large) number of links that you are managing. But at the same time, it seems to me that if you hit that point, do you really need to be actively "managing" links?

Does that make sense to anyone but me?


 7:49 pm on May 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

Just now replied to a similar thread.

[webmasterworld.com ]

how do you put it to work to make things easier?
What functions saves you time
what can you live without
and what functions would you like to see?
What's your opinion?

1) Outlook - to manage the e-mails (sendin and receivin & regular backups of those mails)

2) spread sheet with three colums or may be four (site url, links page url, contact address, comments)

3) link checker (simple php script - which would check whether your link exists in that exact URL feed or not.

If someone could dev a simple program which binds all these 3 different spot - I'm ready to buy that one ;)


 11:35 pm on May 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'm doing pretty well without the software. I'm beginning to wonder at how useful these things really are.

Any thoughts?


 3:28 am on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

If you can automate any process thats great.

However if you cannot replicate what works well manually, automation can actually be a cost by wasting inventory or materials.

I was once in the manufacturing sector and I witnessed the effects of poor automation. We could produce a heck of alot of bad product in a short amount of time.

This didn't do alot in terms of adding to the bottom line.


 5:15 am on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

to me, it saves lot of time in updating link pages and checking of reciprocal links' presence.


 5:20 am on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

For our 500+ sites, we automatically reject proposals from anyone using an link management program.

What they are saying by using them is:

"You do all the work and we probably won't give you any benefit as a result anyway."

linkwidget users can go stuff it.


 9:35 am on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

hard time relinquishing control of most aspects of the link development chain.

you got it there really martinibuster.

what i've looked at doesn't do the job for me in the way that i want, because

1) i believe that good links outweigh volume, so you can't beat surfing around looking for good link partners, i guess using some kind of robot to produce a list of potentials to check out could work, but really i like to think laterally so a robot following chains of links may not get to the same places i would.

2) to get a good partner you have to seduce them, show some interest in them and flirt a little - for those sniggering then this is closer to the truth than you might think, this requires having a look around their site and seeing what they could offer me and what i might offer back to make it good for them too... i don't think automated emails are a good first contact, to me its like someone going around the dancefloor tapping every girl on the shoulder and saying "you wanna dance?" sure he'll get bites but all the top tottie will snear.

3) of course i use some tools you need order, for me i use a database and a hand built web based emailing and check system which i've bodged together myself and i'm not programmer, so its do-able given a little time.

4) i do have old fashioned link type pages too, although you wouldn't know it at first glance as they are really directories, and i can manage these and autogenerate them to static pages however i like from the db.

i guess i've strayed a little OT here but in answer to the original question.

what would i like to see?

i would like to see functionality that ...

checking links are still in place.
checking for robots.txt and meta spider bans.
a decent system for sorting accepting/rejecting incoming link requests
finding sites that are up for decent link exchanges - somehow spidering pages to spot external link patterns from within the site, rather than just from link pages.
a diary prompt where i can set the timescales to remind potential link partners and so on.

i actually don't think there is a one size fits all, my strategy is long term but i respect those that are in the burn bright quick and crash game, they need a lot of links very quick i guess, but to me playing that game seems like hard work, but then i'm a retailer not a web marketer.


 11:39 am on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

One thing I find handy is the ability to check up on your link partners.

It might be interesting to note that 2 weeks ago I blocked access to my server to one of the link management providers, and to date haven't heard a peep from anyone about it. My links are all still good. But since they can't validate the links anymore, where are the whistles and bells? Who's checking up on who? In the end you're probably better off keeping up with it yourself, or hiring a linkmonkey to do it for you.


 2:44 pm on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

to get a good partner you have to seduce them, show some interest in them and flirt a little...

Absolutely true.

Will work for a PR 5 link
There are some websites with plum link pages that I take extra special care with. I love stumbling across the PR 5 link page with maybe one or two other listings on them. Do you really want to send them an automated email?

I would say that the perfect links management software would have the ability to flag certain partner pages for a manual review so that you can personally do the dance with them.

That said, others have made some interesting points about their use of the software.


 3:28 pm on May 18, 2004 (gmt 0)

I've found that link management software is the mark of an amateur, and thus as a professional webmaster I do not respond to them or use them. The only people that do use them are spammers and amateurs.


 3:02 am on May 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

I respect your thought. To me, I cannot agree.

First, I use link management software and it saves me lots of time.

Second, I am not spammer. I did not send out mass emails via my software. I would just find a few site and send them personnel email. Most of my link partners are: people who want to exchange links with me and then through the link submission form my link maangement software created.

Third, I don't think I am an expert but not a rookie also. So, I concern what the software can provide, so I only find a software that can create natural link pages and saves me time.

Robert Charlton

 6:09 am on May 19, 2004 (gmt 0)

I search by hand... and, to good linking prospects, I send carefully worded personal emails. But I would love to have something to automate or assist with the record keeping and the mechanics of emailing.

Copying and pasting from a spreadsheet can really eat up time. From time to time I think I may be keeping too many records, but when I need to refer to them I'm sure glad I have them.

It's even been educational to see what has happened to the PageRank of some sites over the course of a year or two. Kind of helps you sharpen up your judgement for what sites are good prospects (and yes, PageRank is not the only thing I look at).

If someone could dev a simple program which binds all these 3 different spot - I'm ready to buy that one

Me too, as long as it's flexible and customizable.


 8:42 am on May 19, 2004 (gmt 0)


not sure what do you mean by email mechanics, etc. as I am not a technical person.

I use linkautomate and think it is quite suitable to me. May be you can try it, they have free trial version.

Robert Charlton

 3:00 am on May 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

not sure what do you mean by email mechanics, etc.

I mean things like copying and pasting and keeping track of request dates, response dates, etc. This is the kind of thing that's automated in a lot of contact management software.

In the case of link requests, for inbound link requests I track, among other things...

- url of linking page
- PageRank of linking page
- url of destination page on my site
- anchor text requested/or final
- status (ie, "link poss," "requested link," "now linked," etc)
- first action date
- follow up action date
- contact name
- contact email address or form page url
- contact phone/fax number if applicable
- comments about linking page quality if applic
- misc notes abt request
- site type
...etc etc.

A lot of this can and should be automated, but I'm not clever enough with Access or Excel and whatever else it would take to put this automation together.

I don't need nor want software to find linking sites or write my emails for me.

For the messages, I use a variety of modular templated messages that I've honed over time. For each site, I work in a NoteTab Pro outline file which gives me a lot of flexibility, but I need to copy and paste material into these and then usually further customize important requests. I'd be happy if much of this could be automated.

This seems like a lot of work, and it is; but it's what has been necessary to get very high quality non-reciprocal inbound links on some sites, and that's been the key to some rankings.

Robert Charlton

 3:01 am on May 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

PS - What are the specific features of linkautomate. What does it do?


 7:28 am on May 20, 2004 (gmt 0)


In general, it keeps your link directory as update as possible and help you accept/reject link exchange request, etc.. It is not a software to solicit email address and send out link request.

Since I am working for them (i am just a customer), you'd better go to their site and see if the features suit you.


 5:48 pm on May 20, 2004 (gmt 0)

Our experience with sites using link mgmt software (regardless of who approaches whom) has been almost universally negative. Reminds me of being caught in automated voice response systems when what you really want is to talk to a human being. Most frustrating has been trying to get responses when requesting updates/changes.

So, we've always stuck with the Excel sheets.

I must say however, that for very small operations, I'd be tempted to find outside link management assistance, of the sort that these outfits promise. Unfortunately, in this category, reality never lives up to the sales pitches. Probably because there's not enough $$ to be made when you add in overhead, etc., unless the service is pretty thin to begin with.

Unquestionably this is an area where the human eye, and a bit of judgement, really matter.


 9:48 pm on May 22, 2004 (gmt 0)


We never used commercial link management software but be built our own and we never looked back. Now a couple of part time students get 10 to 50 times as many links a day as I used to, and I can concentrate on building a good site and running my business.

Our software is pretty basic. We choose keywords and it scours the net for on topic sites. Then a crawler searches the site for an e-mail contact. We bulk e-mail the webmasters, and lo and behold many of them reply. It used to check for pagerank too, but in the end we found that we ended up writing to everyone on the list anyway so there was no point in filtering to only write to webmasters with high pagerank.

Not having used any commercial products I cannot comment on their usefulness, but our own product has worked out great and I cannot believe it is better than off the shelf products.


 8:30 am on May 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

For our 500+ sites, we automatically reject proposals from anyone using an link management program.

Do you mean anyone emailing you automated templates?

Or do you literally mean that even if they approach you with a personal note and request a on-topic exchange and offer to either submit your link to their directory if you reply with it or give you the option to input it as you see fit, you'll still reject it?

We have very nice software that we use, it allows people to have a user/pass (emails it to them if they forget) so they can update or delete the link if they want. They can also post articles and some other cool features. It's all very clean and very automated.



 8:33 am on May 24, 2004 (gmt 0)


Do you have a bulletproof host for spam emailing like that?

I used to use a software like that and we had one email reported as spam, ALL OUR SITES in our hosting reseller account were immediately deleted with no action for recourse. It was a nightmare and I'd never do something like that again. We only sent out about 500 emails and the link pages all had a PR4 or 5 that we were offering.


 10:50 am on May 24, 2004 (gmt 0)

yes, we had some problems. If you have your own e-mail server it's not a problem though.

I don't really consider it spam as we target the mails pretty well and we are sending out only 200 or so a day. It's not like the viagra ones :)


 2:38 pm on May 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I started out working half manually and half automated. Eventually, I've moved to 100% manually. I got frustrated with sorting through the high percentage of worthless leads that the automated system gave me and got used to being able to record details (anchor text, page titles) that the automated systems didn't have the flexibility to track. Then I look at the huge chunk of time that I spend doing everything manually and think, "If only I could automate this and put the time into building other parts of our sites."

The fact is that as attractive as the automated systems sound, they are nowhere near as good as they sound. So if you want to drop a couple of hundred bucks on a dream of no-effort link building, be aware that there is no automated software out there that actually lives up to that dream. Anyone out there have the skill to build one that actually does?


 3:16 pm on May 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

Evaluating a link is kind of like picking produce in the super market. There are a number of factors to look at does it have any blemishes, how big, how bad where are are they, is the fruit heavy for it's size, how does it smell? One of the factors may be out of line but you may still buy it? Or maybe it just pases all the test but something in your gut tells you to pass on it.

Links are the same, finding them is easy, knowing how to pick the good from the bad is a little harder.


 9:13 pm on May 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hey Graywolf. I have guts of iron :)


 11:42 pm on May 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

I don't consider link emails spam if:

The sites are ranked, and offering good positioning on pages with PR and low numbers of outbounds.

All that if they're relevant ( I try to guess what search their bot used to find me or how they found me...)

Those are just a few things that make me less annoyed whether we exchange or not.


 1:36 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hi SlyOldDog - I just tried to sticky mail you but your mailbox is full. Mail me if you have a chance.

I think any software that helps you source quality link partners and harvests a contact email address is a major time saver.


 1:59 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Glad to hear that some of your experts are doing it by hand. I tried the software and found it annoying. Plus, I learn so much doing link building that I can't imagine leaving the hnuting to a computer.

I send a lot of my link building to a supplier in a low wage English speking country, but only after I have done a bit of "professional" link builing and set up the program.

If it were not so time consumning, it's actually my favorite part of SE marketing.

Robert Charlton

 7:13 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

Plus, I learn so much doing link building that I can't imagine leaving the hnuting to a computer.

Amazing what you can learn when you do stuff yourself.

Doing your own ranking reports by hand and looking at the serps while you do is also immensely instructive... and it really starts to get interesting if you happen to do your own link building and your own ranking reports on pages you've optimized yourself. Isn't it a shame it takes so much time?

I'd love something that would help me copy and paste and semi-automate my record keeping.


 10:40 am on May 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

I'm looking for a resource which will provide the following kind of feature on my links/link exchange page:

Webmasters wanting to link to my site will be presented (in the 'how to link to my site' section) with a choice of ways to link, each involving different keywords in the hypertext of the link. The resource will randomly re-order these choices. The net effect will be that I will get sites linking in with a variety of relevant keywords being used in the hyper-text. I know that if you get a lot of links in, all looking more or less the same and with similar keywords, it won't do you any favours with the search engines.

It would be great if anyone has any suggestions on how to achieve this, perhaps a script I can download and configure.

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