Putting a nofollow tag on your outlinks will stop PR juice from flowing to the websites of your link exchange partners. It would no longer be an even exchange from their viewpoint, and they likely would protest.
To answer the question in your title - the nofollow attribute won't help your own rankings. Well, if you were linking to several bad neighborhoods for while and then you no-follow those links later, it might help in that case.
PR juice and protest's aside, would it possibly help your ranking in Google?
I'm still curious to the answers.
Would Google see it as a 1 way link? And does Google rank your site higher with these rather than reciprocals?
|PR juice and protest's aside |
I think you've been very quick to dismiss the suggestions given. If you nofollow and half the reciprocal linkers stop linking to you because of it, then you will lose rankings. The remaining half links being one-way will not undo that.
As for Google ranking you higher because of the use of nofollow I would say no.
However, if those 30 links are the only links coming in to your site and they are all reciprocal a filter may come in to play which nofollow tags would avoid.
It's a dirty thing to do to your link trade partners and shouldn't even be a consideration.
Do things the proper way and your hard work will be rewarded.
Pull cheesey shortcuts and dishonest moves and you'll sink.
Honesty is always best policy.
With all things being equal, adding nofollow to your reciprocal links would have a slight negative effect on your rankings. Matt Cutts some months ago stated that adding a nofollow stops PageRank flowing to the receiving URL, but that PageRank is not reassigned to other links which are on that same page. So adding nofollow to your outbound links won't have effect on the other links on the page and your internal pages won't see any benefit of it. But there is a small negative effect in that by assigning less PageRank to your linking partner's site, you also receive a little less PageRank from his reciprocal link because he has less PageRank to distribute to you.
This is looking at the situation from a pure mathematical point of view in terms of PageRank, not looking at all the other factors which may have effect, but which we simply don't know.
It can harm your site for various reasons. You'll be directly reducing the link juice of the sites who link to you. Some will drop your link. Others will refuse to add new links pointing to your site, because you'll be perceived as a selfish linker. And it will also alter your outbound link profile so that it looks like you're a PR hoarder, which is unnatural. Although if all of those links are reciprocal, that's pretty unnatural as well.
This OP question is reasonable and one held by many people ; the answers are insightful and to the point. It just goes to prove how confusing rel="nofollow" is to so many website owners. I wish Google would publish an official unambiguous and clear cut explanation that everyone could point to as the final word on the subject. If they've done that, perhaps someone here could post the URL.
<the key here being: "unambiguous and clear cut" -- NOT more of their typical enigmatic mutterings, which often seem to do more harm than good.>
The first thing that your link partner would notice that they are not getting link juice from your site thus they would remove their links and I believe that you would do the same thing if you notice the same for your link partner.