Well, we all have heard about Link Exchange Technique. Do we really know what is it?, how to build them?, Is there is any hard?, or any advantage of Link Exchange Technique. Let’s figure it out!
What is Reciprocal Link or Link Exchange Technique?
A reciprocal link connects two websites to each other. Let’s say there are two websites, X and Y. It will establish link exchange between them if both X and Y provide a link to each other’s websites to their own websites.
They usually establish a link exchange when the two websites cater to similar target audiences, provide similar services or find link exchange beneficial for their users. For example, a television company may have a link to their trusted DTH service providers and vice versa.
Reason for Link Exchange Technique:
A display of partnership:
When a reciprocal link is established, it reflects a good relationship between two firms. It works as a suggestion or a recommendation to the users.
To convenience the users:
Since usually, the services of one website are complementary to the other, link exchange provides the users with easy gateways to information they might look for.
Boost SEO ranking:
When a website links to your website, it creates an external link. These external links also serve as metrics for crawler bots to rank your page better.
While link exchange can be an effective way to establish your brand and increase visibility, uninformed usage can land you in tricky situations as search engines have strict regulations to check its misuse.
How to Build Reciprocal Links?
If you are a beginner trying to carve your way out, here are a few suggestions to get you started:
Focus on quality and not quantity:
Since a lot of external links from substandard sites are likely to put you under Google’s radar for misuse of the link exchange, it is better to focus on the quality of your reciprocal links. Look for potential partners in fields that align with yours. For example, if you have a website dedicated to travel blogs, it is good to contact travel agencies, travel equipment providers, etc.
Contact and build a relationship:
Once you have identified potential candidates, contact them via email and present your case. Keep the tone friendly and casual and point out how your interests align with theirs and why they seem like potential partners for link exchange.
Arrive at a mutual agreement:
If you hope to establish a reciprocal link with someone’s website, it is important to first agree on a mutual agreement in order to avoid future complications. You can send in a suggestion about where your link might be appropriate on their website.
Be patient and polite:
Be cordial while trying to pitch your plan. You can send them the URL of the page where you have linked their site and gently remind them of your mutual agreement. However, if you still get no response after three weeks, feel free to move on.
Maintain a record:
Keep a record of all the people you approach for the link exchange and ensure that you follow up on them from time to time.
What is a 3-way link in SEO?
We have to take a step back to external liking (or a one-way link) in order to understand what exactly is 3-way linking and what are its pros and cons.
External linking or One-way link:
Any link external to a site that functions only in one way. Thus, this is an external link that points to your site. Conversely, you could also link to a site while they may not link to you. For example, A Links to B but B does not link back to A.
This is a two-way link. Two sites link to each other. A link to B and B also links to A.
A link to B. B links to C. C links to A. In this way all three websites have one external link coming their way without having to link back to any of the websites.
This is a common practice among webmasters who are trying to build their main website and avoid the trap of reciprocal linking. You set up a host of websites and one main pillar site. You then ask a bunch of people to link to your main site and in exchange, offer to link their site on one of your other (dummy of sorts) sites.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Link Exchange Technique:
Reciprocal linking sounds like a good idea but it has its risks. “I got your back if you got mine” is all cool but since “if” is the keyword here, you have to be careful. Should you enter a deal with blinds on, you’ll find yourself free-falling and it won’t be fun!
Here are a few key points to consider for any link exchange deals you enter.
Pros of Link Exchange Technique:
If you can partner with a website that has an established reputation and brand image or produces quality content, it will direct users to your website. This will help you get word-of-mouth publicity.
If a website links to you and they have a good SEO strategy, their website will show up in search results. By extension, this will boost your webpage rankings and improve online visibility.
No direct competition:
Since the partnering websites are only complementary to your business, they are not in any way your direct competitors. Thus, linking back only serves to boost both of your businesses.
Complementary information database:
When you provide your users with a link to another website, you vouch for their content. This provides the users with a host of information at a single spot and encourages them to come to your website more often.
Cons of Link Exchange Technique:
If a website doesn’t relate to your content and are still trying to pair up with you, it is looking for freebies and you shouldn’t accept such offers.
A lot of webmasters look for websites that they can enter a three-way link and in this way link your website to a low-quality dummy website. Business with these sites can be bad for your rep. Make sure you do a thorough background check before you agree to partner with them.
Excessive link exchange:
As we have mentioned before, you shouldn’t be focusing on the number of links you get but the quality of it. A host of low-quality links or paid links are only likely to put you under the radar of manipulative practices.
Search engines are smarter than you:
Reciprocal links and other link exchanges are practices that can be very beneficial for you and boost your SEO significantly. But it involves some trickery and if you cross limits the search engines have proper preventive measures in place to identify such activities.
Well, Link Exchange in the form of reciprocal links is good but if done in a limited way.
For Example, recently I was approached by a content writer to give a backlink to her post regarding Secret Tips to Content Writing and we did a link exchange as she was quite similar to my website niche.
Yes, if you do the same with a platform different from yours than Google will penalize for it.
Next Article: Do Paid Links Still Work?