Link Exchange Strategy: Do You Turn Down Link Exchange Requests?

Handshake

I imagine that every blogger gets link exchange requests. It’s often difficult to decide whether to accept the offer or not. Sometimes spammy requests will inundate your inbox and you’ll utterly despise the idea of link exchanges. It’s normal to associate negativity with something that mostly comes across as unpleasant.

I too, as all other bloggers, get link exchange requests very often. Since I’ve made it so easy for others to contact me with a dedicated contact page and a nice contact form, it seems like an open invitation for many bloggers to present their link to me for consideration.

I am not against the link exchanges if the links are relevant to my topics, and I urge you all not to form a bad opinion about exchanging links with other bloggers. But make sure you consider the following points before accepting or rejecting a link exchange.

  • Make sure the site is relevant – You wouldn’t believe that I’ve got link exchange requests from a real estate blogger and a church blogger. In their case, the decision was straightforward for me. I don’t want to link to a totally irrelevant site no matter how good it is. Do you?
  • The site is not a content scrapper – Sometimes a site looks legitimate, relevant, and contains high quality content, but on closer inspection it turns out that it’s a splog, a collection of scraped content. Splogs, of course, are not your cup of tea.
  • The site provides value to your readers – A site can be relevant but it might contain regurgitated low quality content, or news clippings from other sites and blogs. I don’t recommend linking to such sites for an extra backlink, because if your readers click through to the site and find it invaluable, it undermines your credibility.

But what if you get a lot of high quality, relevant, and legitimate link exchange requests, but think that you can’t accommodate so many links in your sidebar?

Sidebar links and blogrolls are so old school. There is a much better way to accommodate all the links and still have infinitely more space left. I am talking about inline linking from within your posts. Most of the time, the other guy wants only an extra link to his blog, and he understands that you can’t give him permanent front page space. So the only other way is to link to him from within your post.

If you want to provide value to your readers, link to a post of your own choosing, and keep in mind that the link should be a natural part of your post.

What is your link exchange strategy? Do you find it unethical to exchange links with other bloggers?

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