Performancing Metrics

Sunday Morning SEO: Blogroll Reciprocal Links

Reading BlogrollOne of the easiest things you can do to improve your reputation on Google is exchange blogroll links with other blogs. This strategy is not the most powerful strategy in the world, but it can give you a small boost in rankings. And if you’re targeting different keywords than your competitors, you might even get big ranking improvements.

About two years ago, I started a blog on a popular TV show. I didn’t have time to do a comprehensive link building campaign, but I still wanted to get search traffic. I exchanged blogroll links with other blogs and my traffic increased by a couple thousand visitors per month.

Reciprocal links still have value despite what many SEO specialists say, but you do have to be smart about it. Here are two principles to keep in mind.

Quality

Getting links from quality sites sends signals to the search engines that your site is a worthy of good rankings. Even with the benefit of getting a reciprocal link, quality blogs are much less likely to link to spammy sites than low quality blogs. Therefore, search engines track the outbound links of quality sites as part of their algorithm.

By exchanging links with reputable blogs, you’ll place your blog in “good neighborhoods,” which will build its reputation with the search engines.

Relevance

If you get too many irrelevant links, you can raise a red flag with Google. For example, its not natural for a celebrity gossip blog to get a bunch of links from gardening blogs. Search engines are advanced enough to recognize the topic of a site is covering. They can easily set up spam filters that trigger whenever a site gets too many off-topic links.

As you exchange blogroll links, stick with your niche and closely related niches. Not only will this keep you from being penalized, but you’ll give Google a better idea of your blog’s topic. This can lead to better rankings for keywords in your industry.

Over to You

Have you ever exchanged blogroll links? If you have, did you see an increase in search traffic and rankings?

Categories: Blogging Tips
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Comments

  1. Robin Ong ) says: 1/17/2010

    Hi. What you preach is easier said than done especially to new bloggers like us. As a business manager, i know running a blog business won’t be easy. I’ve seen entrepreneurs failed, and being a detached employee, i always reckon that they would have succeed if only these entrepreneurs persisted.
    How wrong can I be… Anyway, please teach us how to get traffic, I’ve tried backlinks, twitter, fb and all sigh…………..

    Reply

  2. OliverG ) says: 1/17/2010

    Hi,

    try
    – excellent content
    – being generous with links to bloggers of equal and better standing (avoid the bigshots, bit not too much)
    – 4 postings a day
    – netiquette adhering comments elsewhere )

    Come back in 3 months and tell us how it worked ;)

    Reply

    • Franky Branckaute ) says: 1/17/2010

      OliverG, great tips but not every niche is 4 posts/day compatible (unless you want to join the ‘quick news echo chamber’). As for your link advice, analyse the blogs you want to link to and make sure they also link regularly to relevant quality sites within the niche.

      A great tip to get links from bigshots is the traditional ‘xx Must read (bigshot) blogs’ after you’ve been churning out great content for a while. This is for many a blog the perfect way to end a period of high quality content and get those links from the bigshots.

      Reply

      • Dee Barizo says: 1/17/2010

        Franky, I agree with your tips. Another way to get links from bigshots is to create very good guest posts – posts that are well researched and take you a couple hours to complete. This method is time consuming but it usually takes a lot of effort to get a link from the bigshots. Plus, a good guest post does a lot for your brand, reputation, and credibility.

        Reply

      • OliverG ) says: 1/18/2010

        Well, if a blog needs traffic it is probably new. So it will need content for Google or others to find. It will also need some stuff to base traffic decicions on (should I rather follow this aspect of the topic, or another one?).
        To get to that pooint I don’t see many altrernatives than to create lots of (small) posts in the beginning.
        And if the topic is any wider than ‘the left nostril of my reat-Great-.Uncle-Albert’ it should not be hard to find 4 bits of information about it a day that is bloggable. (OK, the articles will not be long and as useful as silced bread, but they will form a basis fur future decisions and bring basic traffic.

        IF you wait to write the ‘really great article a week’… you will also wait long for Traffic. (Which was the question ;) )

        Reply

  3. Nimit kashyap ) says: 1/18/2010

    Exchanging links from other related blogs is easy if your online for a while and this is not the big issue but I have read lots of bad stuff about reciprocal links also when we exchange link they link to your home page and that will only increase the number of backlinks of your homepage, i think this is not right. I also aware of the fact that most of the top blogs have exchanged links and thats why i am confused about this topic and i am glad that you have published this post now pls do answer my following questions?
    Q- Is reciprocal link exchanging (even from the same niche blogs) is okk?
    Q- Do you also think that Building links only for 1 page will not do any bad for your site seo?

    Reply

  4. GJ Tutorial ) says: 2/1/2010

    I do not agree that reciprocal links can cause any harm in SEO, however its better that you limit it at some point.

    Reply

  5. cbwd says: 4/5/2010

    I use reciprocal links and dont have no problem, but you should allways even it out, try get a mix of links, that are on topic and off value.

    Reply

  6. Chet Payne ) says: 7/2/2010

    Great advice here!

    Reply

  7. spinvin ) says: 4/28/2011

    This is a good post for newbies for sure!! to get good ranking and nice traffic quick is pretty simple!! * Content Content Content!! 2 Posts a day for the first 2-3 months , keep your blog or site clean SEO wise and DO exchange Blogroll placement with other Blogs! * it works well and if you limit yourself to 5 to 10 good quality blogroll link partners you are in business!!

    Reply

  8. SHOPonBrowse says: 10/8/2011

    I don’t think that Reciprocal Links has any worth anymore.

    Reply

  9. Mobile Prices says: 8/12/2012

    A great tip to get links from bigshots is the traditional ‘xx Must read (bigshot) blogs’ after you’ve been churning out great content for a while. This is for many a blog the perfect way to end a period of high quality content and get those links from the bigshots.

    Reply

  10. Lily says: 2/28/2013

    thank you for sharing such informative post. This is really interesting and helpful for me.

    Reply