Beware of Reciprocal Linking! – Top 4 Reasons Why it Can Make or Break You

Reciprocity is about mutual exchange. It’s about giving what is due and receiving what you deserve in return. This is the very essence used in reciprocal link building. As a web marketer, it is given that you have a clear understanding about how powerful links are. The more web sites link to your site, the higher page ranking you will have from search engines. Links can bring traffic and increase your site’s visibility. Being familiar with how you can utilize these links is an ideal way of promoting your business without spending much.

What happened to reciprocal linking

Before page ranking toolbar became a household term, web marketers learned that inbound links (IBLs) could help their search rank and they used these links in a careful way. But when the idea that the “more links you have, the greater page ranking you will get,” became the common notion, people became blinded and started swapping links with everyone else as if there was no tomorrow. They don’t really care about the other parties’ nature of business as long as they can exchange links. Sites selling boats linked with a dentists’ website, a wedding planners’ site is linked to an accountants’ site, and many other odd connections all in the name of improved rankings. Proper reciprocal linking suddenly was out of the picture.

Things to ponder on.

If you think irrelevant links can truly boost your page ranking, think again. Depending on your careful and constant selection of sites to link with, they can either give value to your website or worse, devalue it.

There are a couple of things that you need to consider in your reciprocal linking effort.

  1. Look for a potential link partner who has good search engine rankings since inbound links from those kinds of sites are valuable. Page rank is your first consideration if ever you want to reciprocate. If possible, the page where your inbound links are located should have a page rank and have it as do-follow. Imagine a link partner wherein his site is below the standards for reciprocal linking while yours is way up the rankings. It looks like it’s a one-way benefit. Not for you but him.
  2. Find out the pertinence of the link partner’s site content. Search engines look at the relevance of the content of your website and the inbound links. They give more points to related websites rather than having irrelevant mutual links. Even if your partner gives you a good inbound link due to his quality website but his content is not related, it won’t give much value to your partner’s page rank.
  3. It pays to monitor your links. For instance, if your partner is doing something that would cause him to get banned or he deviously removed your site from his page, then your site will be affected. It all goes back to the fact that you have to make sure it is always reciprocal.
  4. Reciprocal linking should not be your core strategy. Unlike years ago, websites which utilized reciprocation as their core strategy were notorious in the “serps” but sadly it is not an asset anymore. Nowadays, one-way links are more powerful. But if your site does not have an assigned Google PR, it is advised to start off with mutual linking since one-way links may be difficult to acquire.

This strategy requires you to do it in a sensible way in order to achieve the necessary results. You should keep in mind that if you keep on trading links with any irrelevant site you will find, there’s a huge tendency that you will get devalued and see no progress for your SEO link building effort. Think about the long run. Think about long-term and long lasting benefits.

For more ways of getting your site to the top of the search engine results page, hire our link builders who are expertly-trained in various strategies including reciprocal linking.