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moviehub.com (lists my movie-related sites)
softwarehub.com (lists my software-related sites)
travelhub.com (lists my travel-related sites)
None of the sites are interlinked, but every site in each category links to and from its related hub. Each site (with the exception of the hubs themselves) also receives independent inbound links.
I am wondering whether interlinking several different hubs together is in keeping with the hub and spoke system and is an acceptable (non-risky) use of linkage. Would it be advisable to have external/independent inbound links to my hubs as well?
In addition, randomize your linking structure. Don't just template links at buttom of page. (with CSS this is easy to avoid since Div IDs can be switched allowing the page code to be different but the links appear in the same place).
So, if you don’t mind I’d like to take it back a step to the very first words of your original post…
I am in the process of building several different "hubs"…- blaize
When I see the words ... in the process ... I assume you are already at work on this and have a few of your hubs in place. In that case you do have a problem. The problem is … Where’s your plan?
If you are now asking about linking the hubs together, when you’ve already started building them, I’m thinking you need to stop the presses and head back to the conference room.
If I get nothing else out from the time I give through my posting it's the message … Start With A Plan!
Read through the forums and see how many problems people have with simple linking and then throw hub building on top of that. A significant key to a good hub is it’s linking so it makes sense to me that for you to progress to this point, a linking strategy is already in place.
I great hub evolves from a plan. A plan starts with a great idea and from research and analysis the plan forms. The ultimate plan may involve several campaigns, multi level strategies etc.
I believe it’s important to take this back to the beginning not only for what I assumed from your initial comments but for anyone reading this who is actually in the research and analysis phase.
To answer the questions I believe you should be asking - I would need to understand what your current knowledge level is about linking - I’d have to know what your purpose was for building the hub in the first place - what linking strategies are in place - before I offer advice on linking multiple hubs. This is especially true if you intend to expand a network of hubs. In that case I would be starting with the unifying hub first.
What is the core of what allows the rest of the system to exist.
That is a very important question. If you haven’t determined that then you are building your wheel backwards or starting on a side spoke. This sounds like a wobbly system if that’s the case.
Determine what that core is and define your core hub. From there the spokes will be easy to plan for. Make your decisions about linking from the link itself. The links are the threads that hold your system together not the other way around. Think before you link. Repeat, think before you link.
See, both hakre and fathom are correct ... in shorthand ... you should have no problem with a few hubs hooking up, but is that it?
Ask yourself ... What more do you intend to get out of this? How much time and effort are you putting into it for what payoff? Have you balanced the multitude of risks by the potential benefits and are you prepared for the possibilities?
If you are building without first establishing a foundation than as any builder knows your structure will not be sound. Selfishly I just don’t want to hear the whining later. Not from you blaize, but from others reading this who may have the same idea with even less understanding.
Without seeing the sites/structure it is hard to comment. Also, I would not heavily crosslink in any way shape or form. From what I have seen is heavily crosslinked directories can all be brought down with the failure of just one. In general you want your linking to look as natural as if you were linking to any other site. Linking with as little “favoritism” to your own sites/domains is the way to go IMHO. You also need “glue” for each of these hubs/directories. Glue is “content” – there are thousands of niche directories that do not do well compared to the ones that do. As paynt stated you really need to plan before you build anything - your plan will be your downfall or success.