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how to get incoming links to my site

and not be banned or blacklisted by google



7:22 pm on Jun 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

In order to gain PR, there must be incoming links to my site. Now what is the proper way to go about this. I'm really not sure of the etiquette. I just created my first site, and well, to just sit and wait for traffic is driving me Bazerk, lol.

Is it OK to mention on my site something along the lines of "If you have a relevant site, let's trade links"? Could this get me banned, as a link farm thingy.

What about banner exchanges, are they tabboo? and would they help with PR at all?

Any help to this newbie is greatly appreciated. (I did read all that I could read and didn't come across this being specifically addressed anywhere)


7:33 pm on Jun 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Use the site seach feature at the top of the page with the keyword "linking" and you'll find a goldmine of resources on this subject.

Forget PR - get good quality sites that are on topic to link to you (yes, just ask them).

At first, don't offer to reciprocate just ask them for a link. If you have a good site (and are not selling the same products as them!), they'll do it.

If you have to reciprocate links, take it as an indication that you need to work on your sites' content.



8:02 pm on Jun 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Well, TrillianJedi advise would be good in an ideal world but I have to desagree with him under a realistic point of view

Unfortunately, I wish I were wrong, you will have very hard time getting quality sites or more importantly high pr sites to exchange links with you specially since your website is new, LEFT ALONE if you simply ask them to provide you a link for good rather than asking for an exchange.
If you follow this procedure you are very likely you get three or four responses to every 100 emails you sent and by the way the responses are likely to tell you to get lost if you know what I mean

I think that your best approach is definitely putting a note on your site saying that you are prepare to exchange links. Google WILL NOT penalise you for this

On top of that, you can send emails to specific websites requesting a link exchange. The very worse it can happen is that they say no

Try to write a personalise email (ie, not just one copied and pasted email for everybody) which for surely will give you a higher percentage of success
*DO NOT expect too much success at first but just keep trying

There is a good idea if you look at the top websites for your choosen keywords and look to who is linking to them and contact them for the link exchange

Get the Google toolbar installed even if is only in the times you are going to be link-trading (despite the toolbar is not doing great just now) and do ONLY ask for links to sites with pr5+ althought pr4 would be okay too
*On the other hand, do not dennay a link back to somebody who may request one from you if this person have a lower pr UNLESS you see such pr is either grey or white - remember than this person can simply be in your same situation

Make sure than that the anchor text in the link that you will supply to others will contain your chosen keyword
*let me know if you dont understand this and I will clarify further


9:58 pm on Jun 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Hey Jeyval,

Guess we have to agree to disagree then!

I have never had a problem getting one-way links from quality sites. The reason for that is I concentrate on my content - people are happy to link to me because I provide a useful resource. That is the key to a succesful website.

If someone else has a good resource, then they are likely to provide good targetted traffic, even if it takes a little while for them to get off the ground. So I'm delighted to get a link from them, even if they are brand new and PR0.

Ignore the PR - decisions should be made on quality and quality alone.

There's some excellent threads written by the senior dudes on this forum about one-way linking. A search on here for "linking" as I suggested above will list them - I think you'll find it very interesting reading.



10:06 pm on Jun 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I’ve had good success by creating a special ADD URL page on my site. Use your strongest keywords, along with the words ADD URL, LINK EXCHANGE, etc., in the Title, Description, Keywords, File Name and page copy.

On the ADD URL page create a form for your exchange partners to provide you their info such as Site Title, Description, Site Category, Site Description and Email Address.

Create a links page structure that includes a Categories page (your main links page) then below the categories page, the individual category pages.

Then create an assortment of links describing YOUR site for people to copy directly into their sites. In the different variations of links ALWAYS include your most important keywords. You should have plain text and image (banner) links to give your exchange partners a choice. In the text versions include very brief and extended versions. Don’t forget to add keywords to Alt tags in your images.

Structure the ADD URL page so at the beginning you mention you want to EXCHANGE URLs. Then place the form for your exchange partners to provide their site info. Then provide your link info. At the top of page where you mention exchanging, provide a hot link to bring them lower on the page where your link info is.

Place a link to your ADD URL page on your home page.

After about 6 months (or 50-100 links) you may want to add your second most important keywords to your links and banners.

You’ll receive link requests from sites that you don’t want to link to. I just ignore them.

You should also a create “link exchange request” email that you can copy from your word processor into an email. Use this email to proactively search for link partners. Don’t worry about the PR of your link partners (as long as they are not banned!) Just make sure that the visitors of your link partners sites will have a high propensity to purchase from your site.

I should end by saying I’m sure others have their own opinions and may disagree with some of what I’ve laid out. I can only tell that this has worked very nicely for me!

Good luck!


1:05 pm on Jun 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

trillianjedi - I searched for linking, and found some useful things, thanks for all of the info!

jeyval - If Google will not penalize me for using a page to request trading links, that's definately worth a shot at it. Thanks for your input!

rnrtvb - sweet idea about creating a links page... I guess if I want people to link to me, then making it easier (by preparing the links) is a great idea. Now, can I ask what you do with the information they submit about their site? Do you review it and post their's if it's legit, relevant and seemingly above board. If they link to you, but you're not happy with the quality of their material, do you still reciprocate the link?

Thanks again....Davester


7:56 pm on Jun 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Main you, I am penalised but Google will not penalise you (at least for the time beign) for trading links with others as long as they are visible links, however be sensible and make sure you dont convert this into a FFA


8:03 pm on Jun 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member


It's all on a case-by-case basis.

First thing, I examine their site with the URL they provided. I look to see if they have linked to me. I quickly examine site to see if they are using same keywords as my site. I check PR in toolbar. If they have a hit counter I check to see how many page views they've had. (Of course this could be a bogus number, but I check anyway.)

If they have a guestbook I sign it using one my already prepared entries using keywords in anchor text and comment. If they have very good links I’ll send my proactive link exchange request email to their link partners. If I feel that adding their link will help bring qualified leads to my site, I add their site to my links page using the info they provided (URL, Site Title, Site Description, and Category). It's much faster to use their provided description than for me to try to come up with a clever one myself. I may slightly modify their site description if they went over the top... i.e., "world's best site..."

When their site has been added I send them one of my previously prepared emails to either 1) thank them for the link exchange or, 2) thank them and mention that they need to add my URL within a week or I will remove them from my site. If they have not added my link, I keep their link exchange request email “unread” (so it’s bold) in a special folder as a reminder to check status. 95% of the time my link shows up in day or two.

I should also mention that I have an opt-in form on my site to collect email address for my newsletter. In the form I ask how they found my site. I provide check boxes for various search engines, magazines, friend, etc. I also have an “other” text box where they can tell me how they found me. I’m always happy and a bit surprised to see how many people find me via guestbooks and link pages.

One final note: on every page of my site I use a “tell-a-friend” link that creates an email with subject line and body text already filled in. Also on every page an "opt-in" link and "bookmark this page." Gotta keep the viral thing alive!

Good luck!


8:24 pm on Jun 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member


Try this thread - it might help you



8:34 pm on Jun 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I have a website that is 3 weeks old and I know I have about 150+ links to me. I just hope google finds them all.

What I do is provide a service to people, if they add a link I provide them, which the link is optimized for the top keywords that has to do with my website. People add the link without thinking twice and I provide the service. It may not work for your type of website, but works great for mine. The best part is the websites that link to me are about the same kind of topic and I don't have to link back.

I know you may NOT get a bunch of PR6 websites this way but you sure will get alot PR2-PR5. Every little bit counts.

I don't know how Google likes website awards but I found them to work also. Setting up your own free counter system works to if you do it right.

There is alot of ways to get other websites to link to you, just sit and think. Also make sure you don't do anything Google doesn't like.


9:14 pm on Jun 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Well, you can go submit to dmoz for a start.

If it's the site in your profile- many images from qksrv did not show for me.

If it's not a hobby site you may wish to look into web design basics a bit more. Check out some of the technical forums here. DOCTYPE, CSS, validation...ditch the frames, add a site map.

For your specific question- find a few domains that rank highly for your phrases. Now, go to alltheweb dot come and type link:www.domain.com to see what sort of links those folks have.

If the sites are in a similar category chances are that you can get links too.




9:31 pm on Jun 5, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Hi davester28 and welcome [webmasterworld.com] to WebmasterWorld.

As AW said, submit your site to DMOZ and other directories. Try and find other webmasters that are willing to trade links within your niche or you can buy (rent) links. The linking forum [webmasterworld.com] offers a ton of information regarding link building stratagies.


2:32 pm on Jun 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Does anyone know if linksmanager is banned? I noticed that all the sites on their testimonial page have page rank of 5.
In their faq they have this:

When using LinksManager, links swaps are manually initiated and approved by humans one link at a time. LinksManager does not employ the use of doorway pages or employ cloaking or the generating of text that can only be seen by search engines but not by site visitors.

A recent post from a Google representative in a popular online webmaster forum reads:


Does this seem to be something that could work? They also have the option of hosting the page on their server or yours. I assume one's own server is better. Still, I am highly skeptical of anything that makes this process "easy" and certainly do not want my site banned.

[edited by: heini at 10:49 am (utc) on June 21, 2003]
[edit reason] sorry, removed copyrighted material per TOS [/edit]

Patrick Taylor

3:04 am on Jun 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Interesting thread, and relevant to me. I'm a web designer and my own site purely describes who I am and my services. I have only a handful of clients to date and none of the sites I've built for them receive much traffic as yet. They've agreed that I place a link to my site on theirs but the effect on my PR and traffic so far is non-existent. I get maybe 50 hits a week. I'm not expecting my site to generate business but I'm nonetheless interested to see if I can increase my traffic. I'm still waiting to be included in DMOZ but other than that, I'm stuck for ideas on how I can get some backlinks. I've read that there are people with several hundred thousand backlinks. How on earth do they do that? A few would do fine in my case, but obviously there aren't too many web designers who will want to exchange links with me. Does anyone have any basic advice, please, on how I can start to approach my problem?


3:41 am on Jun 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Are you asking by email? here is a modified request i recently got.

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am requesting you to consider [site.com...] for inclusion in your links _good description of page_.
We provide _content that is related to the page_.

site.com is owned and managed by _who they are_.

If you consider us for a link from your website the suggested description is as follows:

_how they want to be listed_

I appreciate your time and kindness,


an exchange
We have identified your website as a potential complementary website to www.site.com Setting up a reciprocal link is one of the best methods of promoting your site on the Web, especially with a complementary site. There is no cost and we can reach a wide audience of potential users together!

_explaination of site and features very specific with an invitation to visit the site_

Reciprocal links can be either a text link and/or a banner. You can obtain our links from the URLs listed below:

_the links they want and the URL they will place a link back to me (good thing to do)_

To finalize the arrangement, please email

_how i want them to link to me_

We will then review your site. Unless there is an issue with the content or professionalism of your site, your reciprocal link will appear on our site within a week.


3:31 pm on Jun 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member ogletree is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

It is easy to get link to a page with good content that is informational. If your site is just basicly an ad for your cmpany then you will not get many links. If you have a great looking site with tons of informaiton about your compnay and what you do you will still have a hard time getting content. What a lot of people do is crate informational sites that people will link to and have that page link to your site. That is how SEO guys make a living. They do other things but you are never going to get a company site very high unless you do this. Of course it alwaays depends on the company. It is true if you have helpful information then you will get links. Big companies get lots of links just by being a big company. Small companies have a much harder time. I have seen good backlinks that gave high pr from sites that a company donates money to or if you use a particuler software package you might get the company that makes it to put a link to your site as a client.


8:07 am on Jul 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Our approach is very simple for all sites.

Build quality content......lots and lots....related to your area.

Get listed in every directory you can find.

Write a nice description and link to every decent site you can find in yours and related sectors. Only put 5-10 similar style links per page and make sure you group similar themes together.

Then email all the sites you have linked to and ask them to link back to you to the most suitable area of your site.

Then.....go and do it all again in another related sector.
Then.....go and do it all again in another related sector.
Then.....go and do it all again in another related sector.
Then.....go and do it all again in another related sector.

Lots of work but it works a treat.

If you get it right and hit lucky your link pages rate very highly on the related industries as they have really useful information.



3:46 pm on Jul 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

>"If you get it right and hit lucky your link pages rate very highly on the related industries as they have really useful information."

Are you saying that without incoming links, i can still rank highly?


9:54 pm on Jul 4, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

We have ended up with a page with 5 outbound links on it, all with good descriptions of the sites we link to. These pages get some internal PR with nice internal linking...ie "Widgets information page".....and we appear in google top 10 for "Widgets information". It surprised us when we first saw it....now we try to link out to everyone in our related fields. We do ask for links back but it not our major concern.

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