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Help: I am in an industry that only believes in Reciprocal links!

     
8:48 pm on Apr 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I am doing in-house SEO for an e-commerce company and am having a really tough time finding sites to get links from. Our site has a ton of very useful, interesting content (we built an entire education center), and I believe that we add unique value to our customers. However, I seem to be in an industry where SEO is stuck in a time before 2005. Practically everyone, and I mean seriously EVERYONE, seems to strictly adhere to the policy of only putting reciprocal links on their sites (or they want you to pay to be in their "link directory"). I am really new to this, and am wondering if anyone has any advice about finding other sources for links (aside from directories). Thank you!
8:51 pm on Apr 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

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If they are all using those tactics than you should have no problem beating them.

Get creative. Use the great content you have in order to attract links.

Offer RSS feeds
Build widgets
Use social marketing and bookmarking sites to your advantage
Look for partnerships w/ high authority sites

11:28 pm on Apr 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Thanks! Those are really helpful suggestions. I guess I wasn't really thinking in terms of how this might be a really good opportunity for our site to do something totally different from the competition.
1:13 pm on Apr 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I'd echo that advice, create an online company "persona" and join/contribute to relevant blogs and forums.

Avoid anything SEO related though....

3:09 pm on Apr 23, 2008 (gmt 0)

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...Practically everyone, and I mean seriously EVERYONE, seems to strictly adhere to the policy of only putting reciprocal links on their sites...

That is exactly why I ignore all link requests (the link spams arrive every day, sometimes lots of them). We have basically no 3rd party links on my many websites since they all only do reciprocals.

Often they will link to me anyway even though I did not ask for a link but within a short time I get email saying they are removing the link because I failed to reciprocate, or giving me one last chance to do it.

It's a ridiculous game (even somewhat unethical) since it is mostly done to trick G to give a better Page Rank.

4:00 pm on June 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Another way to find quality one-way links is to find a forum/message board that is in your niche ... if they allow signatures, put in a simple one-liner to your website. And then post to that forum, with quality posts so people there see you genuinely care about the genre ... and you will start seeing your posts come up in search engine results. Naturally, if you have a choice, choose message boards/forums with as high a PR as possible and/or as high of activity as possible.

And yet another way to get good search engine rankings and PR is to create one or more Squidoo lenses. If your product is home decor widget, then think of several major keywords for that widget and create a lens for each.

This way, you don't have to rely too heavily on those reciprocal link only folks ... you can get one-way links from other places.

5:51 pm on June 25, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Ahhh... you are obsessed with 1 way links.

Well - just keep in mind that 2 way links - the dreaded reciprocals - can actually deliver far more marketing benefits than 1-way links.

A lot of people are stuck in a 2005-2007 mindset - that somehow a reciprocal link is a terrible thing. These people are often frightened to death about some unforseen SEO consequences. What they fail to realize - is that a 2 way link can often generate FAR more traffic - and awareness of your site. This means it can translate into real business benefits.

This is not to say that 1 way links are not good - and you should also think rationally about using your content uniquely to attract 1 way links, and try to use them in SEO appropriate ways.

But in the same way you want to be rational about 1-way links, be careful you are not being irrational about 2-way links. I have increased traffic (and income) on sites by up to 10,000% - and routinely by 60-200% by two way linking.

This has VASTLY OUTSTRIPPED the value of traffic from search - even though for a number of sites I have first page... above fold Google placement for my keywords.

So don't be irrationally - judge each link opportunity for it's business benefit - placement, etc. Not simply by whether it is 1-way or 2-way.

7:57 am on June 26, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I think G has very few link type detection methods but ignoring pages called links.htm other-resources.htm etc is one of them.
2:07 am on June 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I find the same problem with Christian websites--they are still living in the dark ages where they think everyone should either trade links or pay to be listed in their directory, i.e., we should all help support their ministry so they can afford the meager $8 a month for hosting. I'm a Christian too but boy this attitude really irks me--letting money get in the way of helping other ministries. I have several Christian clients and it's realllllll hard to find a good Christian site to submit to.
3:13 am on June 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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...a 2 way link can often generate FAR more traffic - and awareness of your site.

I'm having trouble believing that. How can that be?

6:07 am on June 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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...a 2 way link can often generate FAR more traffic - and awareness of your site.

I'm having trouble believing that. How can that be?

Maybe he thinks about real and visible link exchanges between sites in the same topic or with the same demographics.

By the way, regarding the topic of this thread, a industry doesn't belive just in nothing; the people doing it well in this industry believe in something.
If you believe in another way to do it, go ahead. Once your results become better, your industry would believe what you want. It's not faith, it's just results.

9:17 pm on July 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Yes - i was referring to real visible link exchanges between sites in similar demographic areas - to promote traffic.

I think the whole topic of scrounging for a few 1-way links - that are burried in some post or comment - or best case article - to try to slightly raise your SERPS is very labor intensive - and often is not the best way to traffic or market awareness.

1:07 pm on July 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Yes Kceleb9, I see it quite often in my own stats lots and lots of referals from my own link partners - providing the area is related of course.

One way links are nice but the only reason you are all so obsessed by them is to keep Google happy.

6:50 am on July 22, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I was going to do a reciprocal link exchange (a competitor initiated contact). Then my site bumped his for different KWs. Never heard from him again, lol.