Link exchanges are still a decent way to build backlinks. They might not be as valuable as in the past, but are still crucial to initial backlink building strategies. One of the major road blocks people tend to hit is failure to request them properly. This article is designed to teach webmasters how to properly find a suitable link exchange and how to approach them with the request.
Avoid a Links Web Page
You really should avoid a typical links web page, and you know exactly what I’m talking about. Those web pages that are listed “partners”, “resources”, “links”, etc and contain only links to other websites. Instead, you’ll want to create a content rich web page where you can inject your partner links instead of the content itself. Not only does this improve the SEO value of their link, it might entice them more to do the actual link exchange. Also considering making a separate page entirely to the partner itself; maybe a review or overview of the company or website. Remember, this needs to be valuable to both parties.
Finding the Right Website
The first step is to find the right website(s) to exchange links with. The best method to date is to manually search a specific keyword or keyword phrase and make note of the top 30 results. These websites are the most optimal sites to get link exchanges from since they are already ranking well for that specific keyword or keyword phrase. You’ll want to go through them all and either find a contact e-mail or contact form web page; however it’s more optimal if you can find a direct way to e-mail them. A good method of finding an e-mail is to check the WHOIS information for the domain name since an e-mail is listed in there.
Approaching the Webmaster
This is another field where many people fail when it comes to link exchanges. When approaching the other webmaster you need to be professional, and prepared to provide all the information they may require. This means you’ll need a game plan prior to sending your e-mail. Be sure to ask for a partnership in the initial e-mail rather than directly a link exchange, this will increase your chance of a reply. Be professional and provide all useful information regarding your site and the benefits you both will receive from the partnership. Include any traffic stats you might have and explain a little bit about your website. The more details you provide the more professional you’ll appear and the more interesting the partnership will appear.
All in All it Takes Time
In this day and age of SEO with people still so worried about Pagerank you might find it difficult at first to obtain link exchanges without having any Pagerank values on your web pages. People tend to forget that the visible Pagerank value we see is only updated every 3 to 5 months and behind the scenes Pagerank is changing real time. If this is the case for you then you might need to work on your web page’s Pagerank prior to requesting link exchanges or expand your pool beyond the top 30 websites. All in all with proper application and persistence you’ll achieve the quality link exchanges you need while improving the inbound links to your website.