One Way Links Versus Reciprocal Linking

    February 26, 2004

If you want to feel the exhilaration after noticing one day that your rankings are on the rise, you will have to focus on one very important ranking criterion, your link popularity or page rank of your site.

Link popularity is arguably the most important ranking criteria in regards to search engine rankings or placement. Most Search Engines including the most popular of them all Google, place a great amount of value and weight in a sites link popularity. The basic idea, behind this is you have to have more links coming into your site than going out. If your site is viewed by the public as a valuable resource or tool then you will automatically receive random linking to your site with minimal work on your part. Who’s going to link to a site that just advertises over priced product? If that same site offered tips on how to clean, restore or modify that product for free then sure, that site would be deemed as a valuable resource and would start receiving incoming links because of it. Search engines will rank a web site by the number of outgoing and incoming links to a web site, and then determine the importance or relevance of the web sites linking to each other for a particular keyword or keyword phrase. However, search engines will also rate your site based on the number of incoming links as apposed to out going links and if those links are reciprocated or not. Sites with more incoming non-reciprocal links will then be ranked higher than their reciprocating competitors and will be labeled as a valuable resource to the web community through their achieved page rankings.

Why is one way direct linking more important than reciprocal linking? Webmasters have always found ways in the past to manipulate search engine results and are continually doing so, thereby improving their ranking in the search engines. Google and other engines have matured over the years and are penalizing sites that are currently using known search engine manipulation practices. The latest method of search engine rankings is reciprocal link popularity. Obtaining good quality links from web sites is not a simple task. A quality web site would only link to you if convinced there are some benefits for his site or his site visitors. Does your site compliment his or hers and does your site offer any free tutorials, articles, code tips etc. Would a large corporation like Nike Corp. link to your site if your not shoe related, or offering a review on their product? Of course not and search engines are ranking all sites based on this criteria too. The more non-reciprocal links you have pointed to your site will help achieve higher search engine results for your targeted key words.

Please see my article on How to Choose The Right Keywords ( for more information on this topic.

Reciprocal linking is the new webmaster quick fix to achieve higher rankings without having to directly provide a quality site to the community. Of course, this will help your rankings if you can’t achieve any direct one way links to your site on your own. If your site is not quite seen as a valuable resource to the web community, achieving your backwards links to your site through reciprocal linking may be your only option for now. Search engines may very well start rejecting reciprocal linking in the future because this is an artificial way to increase link popularity. The only sure way for the search engine to ascertain link popularity will have to be one way direct incoming links.

Improving link popularity is not just exchanging links with other webmasters, but also locating one way linking opportunities. The problem is how do you locate webmasters with complimentary sites and the right page rank or PR that are willing to exchange links with you? Sites with PR5 or 6 will be reluctant to exchange links with PR0 OR 2 sites. So identifying the right sites to exchange links with is very important. Otherwise the whole effort will be in vain

The Search Engine Google, uses its Page Rank (PR) as a measure of the link popularly of a Website. If you have the Google tool bar installed on your browser, you can easily see the PR of any site you visit on the Web. You can download the toolbar here at The PR or page rank of a site ranges from 0 to 10. Obviously, the higher the number on the toolbar the better the ranking. A gray page rank bar means the site has not been indexed, been dropped or has been banned.

Please review my article on how to obtain one way non-reciprocal direct links ( for more information.

I am a developer, designer, dmoz volunteer editor and consultant. I have been working in the computer networking industry since 1991, providing training, technical support, project management and consulting services. After working for 4 years for a major online company providing web development technical support services, I was offered a directors position in a large real estate corporation utilizing my web development and management skills. A few years later I decided to start a side business for myself and created Kosmos Central LLC a web promotion consulting company. Currently I provide my consulting services for the same company and a few more.

I’ve lived in the Portland Oregon Area the majority of my existence on this planet and occasionally Ill take time off to enjoy life