You might have heard that reciprocal linking is a bad thing and you also might have heard that it is a good thing, so you wonder which statement is true; the truth is both statements are actually false.
There are good links and bad links, good links actually help your website, bad links don’t and in many cases can actually injure your website.
Let’s look at real life and then it will make more sense. Let’s say you are looking for a plumber after a bit of looking you find two options:
- Option (a) is referred to you by the plumber community, by two local contractors and by a local hardware store.
- Option (b) you find under a local angel cake recipe, in the links of a shoe store, in three link exchange sites, in two multilevel marketing sites, in a local business directory under “general repair”.
Which one would you choose? The answer is obvious if you want your plumbing done right; option (a). But if you just count links, option (a) only had 4 links whereas option (b) had 8; true but option (a) links showed you that he was a professional since he specialized on one area whereas option (b) links showed the exact opposite.
How does it work on search engines? Exactly the same! There is nothing wrong with cross linking as long as you stay in your field and the links actually say something, like “recommended plumber”.
I hope this makes more sense.