Thursday, November 29, 2007

Links Exchange Overview (Text Links and Banners)

How to increase blog traffic without financial investments (part 6)

If you are following this, never ending article (you are at the moment on its part 6), you might notice that the format of this part is different from the previous sections. Instead of giving the main article name as a Heading, I have replaced it with Chapter Title and used the Article Title as subtitle. The reason for this transformation is in the possible competition of the previous Chapters with the same Title for the place in the Search Engines. Crawler will check the titles and might not choose all of them for the grading. Therefore, the unique title and tags should be chosen with every publication to increase your exposure chances.

I used this preface, unrelated to the topic of today’s discussion, as illustration of the simple steps you can do to improve visibility of your Blog.

Text Links Exchange

In this chapter 6 we will discuss the Links Exchange. In a way, it can be considered as a brief reviews exchange version, fast to implement, and quite flexible. Many Blog owners consider this method of the Blog promotion as one of their favorite. This strategy involves contacting other Blog owners for a possible link exchange partnership. It is preferable to locate Blogs that are somehow related to yours, contact the webmaster, and offer him links swapping.

The Link Exchange supposes to work at the following directions:
1. Increasing the link popularity.
2. Improving search engine positioning.
3. Generating free traffic.
4. Enhancing the Blog content.

With all the positive signs Links Exchange brings to the Blog owner, there are some online warnings on using and over-using the Links Exchange for the Blog traffic increase. I want to bring you the full citation of David Jackson on the Link Sharing methodology, borrowed from the Trader Mike’ Blog

It’s well known that if you own a web site the number of other sites that link to your site is crucial, as the number and quality of inbound links determine your ranking in the results of the leading search engines. This has led to the proliferation of “link sharing”, i.e. “you link to me and I’ll link to you” deals.
The problem with link sharing, however, is that it adulterates one of the most useful aspects of the Web: carefully chosen links to contextually relevant topics. Link-sharers not only allow the inclusion of any and every link, but often allow the authors of the linked-to sites to choose and describe the links themselves. If linking is an integral part of Web content and editorial value, then link-sharing debases that content and value.

To conclude the topic, I want to call for careful use of any of the traffic increasing techniques with keeping in mind that nothing you do should jeopardize the Blog’s content quality, readability, and interface comprehension. Content is a King, everything else is just dress or dressing…

Banners Exchange

I personally actively dislike this type of the advertising and, consequently, this method of the Blog traffic increase. The reasons for this denial are as follows:
• I consider this method of advertising as outdated, with low efficiency outcomes.
• Bold, eye-catching banners call the feelings that are completely opposite from those, that are supposed to be: you want to avoid the banner and everything that is related to it.
• You give away a significant space of your site to advertise something you are not aware of. It can be a tasteless graphic, or content that is unfitting to your site. It is true that somebody else is hosting your banner, but it does not make the situation better for your Blog.

With all that, I understand that the great popularity of this kind of blog marketing should have the valid justification. If services find their consumers, there are definite advantages for the Bloggers in using them. Yes, using banner exchange networks is different from simple link swapping in terms of potential visitors reached. If you become member of one or several large banner exchanges communities, you have the potential for your ads to be shown on hundreds, or even thousands of other sites that you would not reach in any other ways. Also, banner rotation and sophisticated targeting might increase the potential attractiveness of this method of advertising to the Bloggers. There are many communities that will be happy to have you as a member. For example, TradeBanners:

This time, I have not generated the list at RateItAll, but to satisfy the readers looking for a bigger choice of the communities, I have borrowed the list, generated by Zdenek Rauner, at his Prospector site:

To be continued…

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