What are link farms? Well, you could say as the name suggests that they are farms that produce links. To be clearer, it is a system where all the members of the group are linked to each other via a common link page. Thus each of the member’s website will have a link to the other member’s website. Sounds quite convenient for the website, but there is more to it than meets the eye.
As a bad SEO practice one may join any such link program and make one’s website seem to look popular instantly/ overnight. As most of such link programs have up to hundreds or thousands or more of members instant access to large number of sites becomes possible. But please beware, because the website crawlers from Google and other search engines can easily identify such an artificially given boost of link popularity. It is aware that this kind of linking has nothing to do with real popularity of the website and that it amounts to actually cheating/misleading the online visitor.
It is unfortunate that many a websites have got penalized by Google (like a fall in the website’s page rank) just because they took part in such link programs though innocently without being aware of its long term implications. It is possible that the intention of the webmaster was not to fool the search engine like Google, but to increase its incoming website traffic. However it still amounts to bad SEO practice. Take a look at the webmaster guidelines from Google at http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?answer=35769&hl=en
It is always better to get incoming links from a reputed website with a better page rank and one that is more relevant to our website’s topic or business. The search engine does not just look at the quantity or numbers of the inbound links but also looks into the quality of these links. If links are coming in from some irrelevant low profile/bad neighborhood websites it would definitely not impress the search engines. So then what is the way to increase your site links? The simple answer is to get simple reciprocal links. Just find a good website and write to them or contact them to swap links with you. This kind of link swapping has a double advantage,
- Can build good relations with other related business
- Can impress the search engines with link popularity
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