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3 Way Linking! White Hat or Black Hat?
3 way linking, triangular linking, one-way linking
UKSEOconsultant




msg:422835
 12:08 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi guys,

> Linking matters, we all know that!

> One-way links carry more weight than reciprocal links, we all know that!

What we donít know though is how search engines treat 3-way (AKA triangular) links. Do the SEís see them as legitimate one-way links or as spam links that exist on a linking network, even if each site that links to you boasts a unique IP?

3-way links are easier to source than absolute one-way links, if they are deemed white-hat by the SEís then surely this is the way forward for linking projects. On the other hand if they are seen as black-hat then surely they should be avoided.

You thoughts would be appreciated!

Many thanks, Lee

 

briggidere




msg:422836
 12:25 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

i think the se's are on to this already. they aren't stupid. It wouldn't be very hard to spot the 3 way links.

only my thoughts on it.

vivalasvegas




msg:422837
 12:29 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

I agree with briggidere - SEs should be able to easily detect 3 way linking patterns.

UKSEOconsultant




msg:422838
 12:51 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

thnaks guys, so are we concluding that 3-way linking would be regarded as a black-hat technique and therefore should be avoided?

Guess it's back to the tedious, time consuming and often fruitless task of securing absolute one-way links!

Damn!

SincerelySandy




msg:422839
 2:10 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

Just because a link is a 3 way does not make it inherently bad or black hat. If the links are relevant and all 3 sites are not owned by the same person, tell me, where is the black hat?
All links being equal in relevance, 3 way linking is no more black hat than reciprocal linking.
Here's a quote from a google patent I saw in another thread here...
signal attempts to spam a search engine (to obtain a higher ranking and, thus, better placement in search results) by exchanging links, purchasing links, or gaining links from documents without editorial discretion on making links.

This tells me that google is not as concerned with the method of getting links as they are with the quality of those links. Seems pretty logical to me. The above quote says to me that it doesn't matter if you exchange links, purchase links, or you get 3 way links... What matters is if you do not use "editorial discretion" on the links.
Many people will say that "3 way links can be detected", so what, so can reciprocal links.
Of course it's not a smart idea to have a bunch of 3 way links between the same 3 sites. This would be very easy to detect and more importantly, it would probably not be for the benefit of the visitor.
3 way links where 2 of the sites are always the same but the 3rd site is always different can also be easy to detect, but in this case it is more likely that the links would benefit the user so the links may not be discounted by the se even if they do spot the pattern.
3 way links where only 1 of the sites is always the same would be almost impossible to detect, and again the links would likely be for the benefit of the visitor.

martinibuster




msg:422840
 5:24 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

This tells me that google is not as concerned with the method of getting links as they are with the quality of those links.

You will get a much different story from members of Google's spam team if you should ever attend a PubCon and ask them about it. ;)

UKSEOconsultant




msg:422841
 5:35 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

So many different views!

The way I see it is that although Google can identify 3-way links and although they will not penalise your site for this the value of the 3-way links would be signifigantly depreciated.

IMO true 1-way links are the way forward even though they are much more difficualt to source.

Cheers, Lee

rj87uk




msg:422842
 5:38 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

Is any linking to get your website a better rank white hat? My personal answer is no, thats life im a SEO and I need to do it to get a better rank in most search engines.

Jane_Doe




msg:422843
 7:55 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

Many people will say that "3 way links can be detected", so what, so can reciprocal links.

Exactly. Almost any technique that gets posted here a lot Google either already has, or will shortly, try to program against. They are looking for natural link patterns to rank sites and in most cases do a pretty good job of it.

Crush




msg:422844
 7:58 pm on May 9, 2006 (gmt 0)

"You will get a much different story from members of Google's spam team if you should ever attend a PubCon and ask them about it. ;) "

Spill the beans MB :) I might go pubcon next time and hunt one of the spam team down and inject them with some truth drug, well maybe a ton of vodka and get him/her to reveal all.

[edited by: jatar_k at 12:51 am (utc) on May 10, 2006]

sugarrae




msg:422845
 12:47 pm on May 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

>>>Many people will say that "3 way links can be detected", so what, so can reciprocal links

The question by the original poster was if they see them as legitimate one-way links. I think they're seen (by the engines) for what they are (if we're talking more than a handful)... three-way links. If someone is doing them in mass as a means to fool the engines into thinking they're all one-way links, they'll likely be detected... again, as three-way links.

Whitey




msg:422846
 12:10 pm on May 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

Sugarrae - What's the process for detecting this, and differentiating it from regular one way links?

I'm not convinced it's possible to detect this, or apply a penalty to it without harming a great many more innocent sites effected, most unwittingly.

Have you seen any examples of detection?

sugarrae




msg:422847
 2:51 pm on May 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

Whitey, you may find this thread an interesting read... [webmasterworld.com...]

pageoneresults




msg:422848
 3:01 pm on May 11, 2006 (gmt 0)

White Hat or Black Hat?

Don't want to stray off topic but, I don't believe any of us wear hats around here. If we do, it's to keep the blazing sun off of our balding scalps.

Can we keep the whole White Hat/Black Hat thing out of these discussions? I personally feel that those two terms cause more damage to our industry. Heck, the press is even using them now. :(

glengara




msg:422849
 8:47 am on May 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

*What we donít know though is how search engines treat 3-way (AKA triangular) links.*

FWIW, I recently looked at a couple of sites that had been zapped by G, nothing particularly untoward struck me, but a common oddity was that while both had loads of obviously reciprocal links there was no sign of a links/resources/partners pages on either site.

With the present churn at G that may well just have been a coincidence, but.......

austtr




msg:422850
 11:43 pm on May 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

I can think of several scenarios where A links to B, B links to C and C links to A.... the typical triangular link arrangement.

This can easily happen quite naturally, it can happen over an extended time period and may involve different webmasters who are completely unaware of the efforts of the others.... and most importantly, the links can be perfectly natural and add value to the viewer experience with all 3 sites.

It's hard to imagine any of the SE's specifically targeting ALL triangular links when there is so much potential for collateral damage to white hat sites.

As mentioned by other posters, it is probably a matter of scale.... if there are a few triangulars, no problem but if the links all appear at the same time and there are a lot of triangulars in the link mix, the sites may get flagged as being involved in artificial link creation. AKA... spam

Whitey




msg:422851
 12:01 am on May 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Whitey, you may find this thread an interesting read... [webmasterworld.com...]

The automated version might catch out the clearly "abusive" forms of 2 and 3 way linking, but it's hard to imagine on the 3 way linking automation could cope with it, without effecting a lot of innocent sites.

I kinda think the most reliable detection is competition reporting SPAM links to Google.

The next level of detection i would speculate would be to flag URL's and networks that look suspicious and then have them weeded out by human editors at Google.

I guess the real worry is those guys that do serial spamming as a full time occupation, which must really irritate Google etc, and i think this is where Google focus' it's efforts. Quite how they identify these would be interesting to know, but I guess it's a combination of backlinks, content , C Blocks , whois , target sites and originating sites and perhaps theme.

Jane_Doe




msg:422852
 12:07 am on May 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Three way links are sooooo 2004. There are tons of posts here at WebmasterWorld on better ways to get links, so I'm not sure why anyone would risk their sites with dodgy tactics like that. It takes a lot of work to get a new site ranked in Google for most terms these days, so why risk getting it banned by doing something that is not only frowned upon by Google but also easily detectable.

paulanthony




msg:422853
 4:47 pm on May 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi - I currently have the situation where three companies in our industry including ourselves have "joined forces" to cross promote each others products. We are working extremely closely together to gain a foothold in the industry. As a result we have agreed to exchange website links - Each of us point our websites to each others websites. Is this what you guys are regarding as 3 way linking? And should I be discouraging this - it has been proposed from a business point of view - but why is this regarded as black hat SEO?

JUST to be clear here is what is proposed for link

A links to BC
B links to AC
C links to AB

JuniorOptimizer




msg:422854
 9:00 pm on May 14, 2006 (gmt 0)

The main reason it would be considered Black Hat is because you're hiding the fact you're doing link trades. Your intention is to fool the search engine into thinking you've attracted a ton of "one way" natural links, when in reality you're running a scam.

paulanthony




msg:422855
 10:51 am on May 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

On the contrary Im adding links for my visitors not the search engines. Im simple enforcing the relationship between the three companies by endorsing their websites.

Anyway anyone else any views on whether i should put forward the argument for not linking?

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