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Footer links to my own sites - good idea?

     
7:58 pm on Nov 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Should I link to each of my websites through the front page footer of all my sites? Most of my sites are hosted on one account. I have heard rumors that Google does not give credit to back links on your own sites especially if they are hosted on one account. Is that true?
11:16 pm on Nov 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I've interlinked some related sites (same IP address, same Whois) from the footer area, and it does seem like those links may not be sending full link juice. But the sites involved all have a healthy backlink profile in other ways, and the links are there for visitors -- also, they have been there since launch. No obvious problems or penalties so far.

However, to completely cross-link all your sites, and especially in a mechanical way throughout all the footers, seems a bit dicey to me. It might work out OK, but I personally wouldn't do it. Even if it isn't a problem in the moment, it just feels like the kind of thing that might blow up in the future.

5:52 am on Nov 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I've seen interlinking of related sites without healthy backlink profiles cause one site or the other to drop out for searches which both sites satisfy. The site that stays in is not necessarily the one that ranks the highest for the search.

I've also seen sites of common ownership both appear in the serps without apparent problems.

If you're interlinking for users, based on what Matt Cutts has said recently about the nofollow attribute, I'd perhaps use nofollow or javascript links... but I try to avoid the interlinking entirely when I can.

5:55 am on Nov 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Dicey to say the least- I was hit with a -950 penalty last year for doing it. I thought things were cool as I had the setup since 98, then one day,...
1:59 pm on Nov 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I started with a site selling widgets, then created two spinoff sites giving users free widgets that were related, but different (i.e. free blue widgets, free red widgets). I have links in the footers of the two freebie sites back to the main site and the other freebie site. Google has figured out just fine what the main theme for both of the freebie sites are and rank them on the first page for competitive keyword phrases that are specific to the site theme.

I wouldn't be doing it if the site content wasn't similar, though. That would look like spamming. But in my case, someone who is interested in red widgets might be interested in blue widgets, so it makes sense to link them.

9:13 pm on Nov 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Thanks guys. I will probably leave them as it is for now.