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Should I Link Exchange?

     
3:59 pm on May 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I have a small gift idea site that has done okay in the search engines for nearly six years. But not great. My site sits on page two for most competitive terms and page one for others.

I stopped doing link exchanges in early 2008.

Since the beginning of 2011, I have made big internal changes. I am beginning to see my ranking improve in competitive and long-tail keywords.

However, I am tempted to start link exchanges again using a legit link building company. Since I am an e-commerce, it has been very hard to get one way links. And I do not have the budget for paid links. (After Panda, happy I did not.) I want to give my site a SE boost plus get the word out about my site via the exchanges. The exchanged links will only be related to my niche.

But I have heard no link exchanges.

Would love the hear what you think about link exchanges?

Should do I this?

(it is not too late for me to back out and cancel the service)
3:19 pm on May 25, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member planet13 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



I don't have any proof one way or the other about link exchanges.

Although I can say that many of the top ten sites that are in the niche I follow closely seem to rely on link exchanges, as well as some free / low cost directories, some spammy article links, and a few others. They don't have a lot of natural links.

Those are all ecommerce sites too.

You might try a small amount of link exchanges with very closely related sites.

If I were going to do a link exchange, I think I might look into exchanging links with established sites that sell the same thing you do, but sell to different countries. For instance, some of the items I sell I am not (due to licensing restrictions) able to sell in Canada. So I am looking for Canadian companies that sell the same thing and are not able to sell in the US. I'll see about swapping links with them.

In the end, I think that you should have some non-ecommerce material that you should use for getting one-way links to.
8:46 pm on May 25, 2011 (gmt 0)

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You might try a small amount of link exchanges with very closely related sites.


Thank you, Planet13. I am going to do just that.
4:56 pm on Jun 2, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Link exchanges ware good some years ago (like 2006 or earlier) , but google slapped it after a while.

They have some algorithm that detects reciprocal linking and might downgrade your sites ranking.
6:41 pm on Jun 2, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Blogs reciprocal link like mad. They call it blogrolling. Ask yourself, do you think they are they penalized?

Should you exchange links? IF your site is high quality with good content then hell yes, I think it makes sense to exchange links with good quality sites. It will help a NEW site rank for more longtail phrases then grow from there as more people discover your site.

If your site is poor quality then probably not. From there you have to write unique content that makes other sites want to link to it, etc. more information here [webmasterworld.com].
9:16 am on Jun 13, 2011 (gmt 0)

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They have some algorithm that detects reciprocal linking and might downgrade your sites ranking.


Where did you get that from? Google certainly can detect reciprocal linking and it will somewhat devalue reciprocal links but it will never downgrade your ranking simply for exchanging links with other relevant good quality websites!
4:41 pm on Jun 14, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



why are you trying reciprocal link building just try 3 way link way link building so you can get valued links to your website while your OBL should be zero.
4:48 pm on Jun 14, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member planet13 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



why are you trying reciprocal link building just try 3 way link way link building so you can get valued links to your website while your OBL should be zero.


If you have had good experience with this, then you should let everyone know.

Most webmasters who receive a request for three-way links will not respond to that email request.

For example, why would I link to your site if you will be linking to me from a site that probably has just a bunch of outbound links to other sites. You would have to put a lot of quality content on that third site to make the outbound links have any value on them.

And I am not sure you really want to have zero outbound links from your main site. I think google would be pretty suspicious if you had lots of inbound links and zero outbound links.

Personally, I think there are better ways to build links than using three-way linking.
5:19 pm on Jun 14, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



just try 3 way link way link building


Three way link building is reciprocal. It's reciprocal between three sites. Some like to think of them as one-way because there are no outbounds, but there is a reciprocal relationship. In exchange for a link the third site gives a link. The definition of reciprocal is to give one thing in exchange for something else. In this case it's a link from a third site, which is a reciprocal exchange. Google can detect three way reciprocal links. ;)
11:15 am on Jun 21, 2011 (gmt 0)



I think that having reciprocal links is a quite natural thing. As far as I experienced, reciprocal links do not have any negative ranking effects except cases where there is massive abuse of it.
But on the other side, there are no positive ranking effects either ... you could achieve good rankings with reciprocal links many years ago, now they wonīt boost your rankings at all.

By the way, panda update had nothing to do with paid links ...
6:47 pm on Jun 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member planet13 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



But on the other side, there are no positive ranking effects either ...


I wouldn't agree with that 100% - It might be dependent upon the keywords / niche one is competing in.

For the two-word keyword phrase that I track closely, several in the top ten appear to do quite well based primarily on reciprocal links.

Granted, it is not a particularly high volume keyword phrase, which might have a lot to do with it.

I think the only way is to look at the top ten results in the SERPs and go in and examine every link to those sites.

Now, having said that, I should also mention that the improvement in the SERPs for my pages that I have seen has been from primarily getting one-way links from authority sites. Those types of links still seem to be very valuable.
9:42 pm on Jun 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

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The problem with link exchange is there is a page called links, maybe once on the homepage, then the links pages may be split up into several categories and so on......very little value.

If you swap on some decent page, you more than likely need to give something decent back in exchange. No such thing as a free lunch unless the other party is green.

Really it does my head in just thinking about it. If you do ecom sites like myself, I would rather go and purchase a link somewhere. I cannot even contemplate scheming a scheming scheme to cleverly get Obama to give me a link from his homepage. I would rather call him up and say, how much for a link man.
10:52 pm on Jun 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



The problem with link exchange is there is a page called links, maybe once on the homepage, then the links pages may be split up into several categories and so on......very little value.


A very practical consideration. The average links page is designed to be crap, to hoard as much PageRank as possible.

[edited by: martinibuster at 6:40 pm (utc) on Jun 24, 2011]

6:14 am on Jun 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



A high quality, authority link is a high quality, authority link. Google has evolved to the point of understanding linking intention in my opinion.

So linking to another authority website because they published an article about your business and linked to you would make perfect sense. And therefore would likely count.

Repetitively linking between domains, especially others that also repetitively do this with other, generally low quality domains sets a standard and that profile is easily analyzed and understood in my opinion.

Long and short - in my opinion, some reciprocal links, to on-topic related resources is perfectly fine, if the purpose is to add value.
4:42 pm on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)



We worked with an ecommerce site 6 months ago, and like you sold a unique product in a smaller market. Getting links was pretty tough and they decided they wanted to go this route.

So we did one dozen from;

- pages that were link exchanges but the host didn't focus on giving out anchor text links, just site/brand with a paragraph of text for each
- VERY closely related to the sites industry
- site itself passed our quality specifications

From what we saw it definitely helped not only in a decent boost in the serps, but the traffic coming from the pages are targeted and great. The traffic is actually converting at a minor level but that's better than nothing!
5:39 pm on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member



primarily getting one-way links from authority sites
In e-commerce, who is the authority site? The best ranked? The most popular? I tend to be a few spots back from the brand merchants selling widgets. Even though I only feature blue widgets from across the web (no selling), and I have many of the authority website's widgets on my site, I am not sure they will want to help me rank better.

I would rather go and purchase a link somewhere.
I am tempted but with Panda, going to hold off.

Long and short - in my opinion, some reciprocal links, to on-topic related resources is perfectly fine, if the purpose is to add value.
I want to get my name out in my niche, other widget sites. So yes, I too think it is a good thing.

- pages that were link exchanges but the host didn't focus on giving out anchor text links, just site/brand with a paragraph of text for each
- VERY closely related to the sites industry
- site itself passed our quality specifications
That is what I asked from this service. I have seen my ranking floating up just a bit after using them. Nothing big, but slowing floating up.
7:32 pm on Jun 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member planet13 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



In e-commerce, who is the authority site?


I don't know if this will work for you, but for our ecommerce site that sells brand name products, getting a link from the manufacturer's site (who doesn't sell retail) has been a boost.

I am tempted but with Panda, going to hold off.


Well, nobody knows for sure, but Panda seems to be a different animal.

Panda seems to deal with on-page content. the Sites that are said to be the big losers were primarily content farms, and google has said that panda would be targeting "shallow" content.

There might have been other changes made by the spam team at google to the algo that is changing the way off-page factors (like inbound links from external sites, or even internal linking practices) are handled. But if it is, it is PROBABLY separate from Panda.
2:21 pm on Jun 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I don't know if this will work for you, but for our ecommerce site that sells brand name products, getting a link from the manufacturer's site (who doesn't sell retail) has been a boost.


That is an interesting idea. I am not sure if it will work either, but I will do some investigating.

Panda seems to deal with on-page content. the Sites that are said to be the big losers were primarily content farms, and google has said that panda would be targeting "shallow" content.


Thanks for the reminder. I tend to lump all my site issues into Panda.

Buying links it tempting since I am pretty sure it works, as many have said, but I worry I'll get caught.
11:04 pm on Jun 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member planet13 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Buying links it tempting since I am pretty sure it works...


well, JC Penny pretty much proved that it DOES work. Just don't get caught.
2:33 pm on Jun 28, 2011 (gmt 0)



"I would rather go and purchase a link somewhere."
"I am tempted but with Panda, going to hold off."

As far as I can see, Panda (neither 1.0 nor 2.2) didnīt affect the whole paid links topic.
To pay for a link does not mean not to follow certain criteria for link building like topic relevance...
11:26 pm on Jun 29, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Authority sites do not mean competitors necessarily. If you want to develop strong links that will help you need to research heavily and find ways to measure brand and link value and then develop angles in order to execute on those.

And then develop ways to speed up the system to a respectable level, depending on your goals.
12:14 am on Jun 30, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Authority sites do not mean competitors necessarily. If you want to develop strong links...


There's a lot there that is subjective. What do you mean, when you say, Authority Site? What do you mean when you talk about a strong link?

I think the definition of authority site and a strong link tends to be fluid and not one we will all agree on. I also notice many people lie to themselves and use toolbar PR as a metric, even though they say they don't.

Authority
Authority as I think of it has to do with how well a site ranks for short phrases and how deep it ranks across thousands and thousands of related phrases. For me, the authority of a site is not something that can be passed through a link. So in terms of acquiring a link, the authority of a site is not that important to me, if authority is defined in terms of how well the site ranks.

Strong link
What makes a link strong? For me it's the absence of nonsense in their inbound links and the absence of same in their outbound links. There are other factors regarding the placement etc. that go into that to, that makes a link strong.

The above definitions of Authority and Strong Link do not mention PageRank. I will take a gray bar link or a white bar link over a PR 6 link from a site whose backlinks are associated with SEO forums, crap directories, is selling links, etc.
5:21 pm on Jun 30, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member planet13 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



I think that, in limited circumstances, you might be able to find SOME sites that have "authority" and SOME site that have quality links by the following methods:

Authority: If you find sites that rank well in google but DON'T have a lot of inbound links, then maybe we can assume there is some level of "authority" to the site that is helping it rank.

(Of course, authority and inbound links are NOT exclusive - there are probably lots of sites with lots of "authority" that probably have lots of links as well.)

Strong Links: Aside from just looking at Page Rank, possibly looking at sites that rank well but DON'T have keyword matches in the title element or URL.

Again, I am sure there are numerous sites with strong links AND have keywords in title / URL.

But the idea is that maybe we can help "isolate" different ranking factors to get a better idea of what each one means.
2:05 pm on Jul 16, 2011 (gmt 0)



I have tried link exchange and most of the time I failed to do..that's why I don't like link exchange...
6:16 pm on Jul 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member planet13 is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



I have tried link exchange and most of the time I failed to do..that's why I don't like link exchange...


Maybe that is why we SHOULD link exchange!

Because if you failed, then your COMPETITORS would probably fail, too.

And you want to get the types of links that your competitors CAN'T get.

So if you can put in the time and energy to get links your competitors CAN'T get (or won't bother), then MAYBE they will be a good benefit to you?
6:13 am on Jul 17, 2011 (gmt 0)



Honestly, since the Panda changes, i am avoiding Link exchanges. Atleast the paid ones. Of course if the link exchange is with a very closely related site, Google wouldn't know whether its paid or not. But let the natural linking happen so that in long term, its fruitful.

Panda has surely reminded me of creating backlinks again. Had left it for a year now.
8:13 am on Aug 11, 2011 (gmt 0)



Three way link exchange is usefull. many seo company doing three way link building for promote client sites.
1:38 pm on Aug 11, 2011 (gmt 0)



I would like to recommend you to not go for link exchange or paid links.

Because Google crawler actually hate this links. It's look like you paying someone to talk good thing about your & your website.

So even better, If you have good domain authority (6 years) it's pretty good get back-links as I think.

please submit you website in DMOZ and Yahoo directory. Surely it take your website in SERP.
3:42 pm on Aug 11, 2011 (gmt 0)



Submitting websites to DMOZ and Yahoo directory is something you can do, but this is nothing that will have impact for the short term. You will possibly have to wait months until you got registered.

If you want to link exchange, donīt do it in a reciprocal way. Focus on your niche. If you donīt have the big budget for link buying, go for just a few quality links. Increase your social media activity, that will might give you some short term ranking boosts.
12:11 pm on Aug 12, 2011 (gmt 0)



I did link exchage on a large scale and analysed it with google analytics and saw on a long term a real increase in customers visiting my website. So I can defenately say that link exchange works for increasing your traffic. But I can't realy say if three way link exchange is not good cause I did both. It is important to stay within your market and to use more a way of content exchange instead of link only. Because it is working I'm still doing it so if you feel like contacting me about this feel free to sent me a message to ask some things about this.
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