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I have 2 Hubs
Hub A Hub B
and 10 spokes 1 - 10
Hub A links to all 10 spokes and spokes 1 - 9 all link back to Hub A. Spoke 9 links to spoke 10 and 10 back to 9 as they are both related. Spoke 1 links to 2 as it is related but 2 doesn't link back to 1. No other spokes are linked.
This hasn't caused any problems despite all sharing the same host apart from spoke 9.
OK, now in comes Hub B...a brand new website
Spokes 1,3 and 4 all link to Hub B and Hub B links back to spokes 1,3 and 4.
What I would like to do is link Hub B to Hub A without linking A to B but I am scared that this might just be pushing it a little too close to the edge. If I do add the link I am considering adding a nofollow tag to stop googlebot picking up on the link. I do not use a robots.txt file.
I know this is not large scale interlinking but your opinion is much appreciated.
Two major things to consider:
1) Does this linking structure contribute to the usability and value to the end user without any regard for the SE's?
2) Do all of the sites in question have a large number of quality inbound links from sites outside your network. (more external inbounds per site than all of your own cross-linked pages will create)
If you can answer "yes" to both questions, I personally don't see a problem. That said, what I see isn't the issue... Google's current and future algo is where the buck stops. (and their editors in the event of competitors complaining)
I welcome other perspectives based on first-hand experience.
I think the way to go is not to link these any further as I get too nervous. Many of the sites are very good in terms of content and have natural links but a few are immature. I shall wait 6 months or more before I continue with any further linking.