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The Benefits of Reciprocal Links Revisited

By Charles Hopkins Published 04/23/2006 | Marketing
There exists an endless supply of tools available to webmasters to help them in making their website a success; of these one is reciprocal linking. Reciprocal links have been around a long time. Unfortunately, they are an often overlooked or under-used method today. How many times have you searched for a link partner to find that many websites do not even have a links page? Of those that do, few have an area on their website that actually welcomes you to request a link trade. It seems these websites are just islands unto themselves. They miss the beauty of the World Wide Web's strange, yet brilliant linking system.

Perhaps it is because it takes so long to build a quality website and the owner is not at all interested in promoting anyone else's enterprise. Maybe they are in a hurry to see immediate profits. Therefore instead of putting in the effort and taking the necessary time to build a web presence, they look to search engines to solve all their troubles and pronto! Some may think that linking to another website is making it easy for their hard-earned visitor to leap over to another website. While that may be correct, it is also true that the other website's visitors are jumping over to their website in return.

Little do they realize that reciprocal links would give them a big boost in the search engines. When calculating a website's page rank, link popularity is one thing that is considered by search engines. While it is accurate that one-way inbound links are given more weight. Reciprocal links do aid in reaching a higher page rank too.

However, a critical mistake can be made by many a newbie webmaster. That is trading links with every website that is willing to return the favor. Search engines take a dim view to indiscriminate linking. Therefore if the webmaster has a dieting website; linking with a pet or travel website could be detrimental to its scoring. For instance, in their place, the webmaster would be wise to start trading links with health food, exercise or vitamin websites for maximum benefit. By creating a tightly knit link directory of complimentary websites, a webmaster is encouraging his visitors to see his own website as a valuable resource for browsing their favorite topic. As a result, these visitors will bookmark the website providing the webmaster with plenty of free return visits.

There is even an additional advantage for the webmaster with limited time. That is when a search engine robot has indexed his link partner's website, locates the webmaster's link and crawls his website. This may happen before he has a chance to submit the website directly to that particular engine. It's like getting free website submission!

As a webmaster, you not only need to keep your website updated and fresh. You ought to assure its success by developing a healthy traffic-producing plan. Certainly it is important to stay abreast of all the latest techniques of creating traffic. However, it is equally important to remember some of the time-tested methods like reciprocal linking to achieve this goal.