Link Building: Are Link Exchanges of any Real Value?

When someone emails you requesting a link exchange it can be tempting to say yes.  We all know that getting links from other websites helps with rankings, but like with all these things, you have to proceed with caution.  Most link exchange requests are of a very low value and best to ignore.

Link exchanges are generally not a great idea any more, unless they are from/to genuine partners.  Briefly here are the reasons:

  1. A link towards you from a non-related website is usually not of much value
  2. Generally people requesting link exchanges have low quality sites
  3. A two-way link is of less value than a one-way link towards your site
  4. A link from your website to another site is of no value to you – unless it’s to a trusted partner and of use to  your website visitors
  5. A link from your site “endorses” the website you link to.  Unless you actually do endorse the site I would avoid this.
  6. Google doesn’t like seeing pages and pages of outgoing links
  7. Google doesn’t like link exchanges as they are seen as trying to manipulate Google and in most cases that’s what people are trying to do

My advice – remove any link exchange pages from your site and only link to companies that you endorse, deal with on a daily basis and actually want to link to.

The link building we do here at meets Googles webmaster guidelines.  Unfortunately link exchanges that try to manipulate the Google search results are not of any value any more.  They have recently been aggressively trying to stop this practice by penalising websites that use such tactics.

Photo Credit: Flickr