In 2014, Are Free Link Exchanges Still Acceptable?


In 2014, is it still okay to participate in a free link exchange? That’s what I had to ask myself today when I received an email that proposed a free link exchange amongst “our websites”. I have to admit that I found this email rather odd. Especially given the fact that people just aren’t sending out these unsolicited emails anymore. But still, I had to ask myself, “technically speaking, are free link exchanges still acceptable?”

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During Link Cleanup, Don’t Forget Links to Redirected Domain Names

google link cleanup

One of several search engine optimization tasks that I am involved with is cleaning up a website’s link profile. With the Google Penguin algorithm update affecting so many websites, I have personally be involved in cleaning up a LOT of websites’ link profiles. So much so that I’ve quickly become the resident expert at cleaning up link profiles. This also involves cleaning up link profiles because websites have been manually penalized by Google because of unnatural and inorganic links pointing to a website. [Read more...]

This Has to Be the Worst Excuse for Charging for Link Removals

One of the tasks that I help website owners with is cleaning up their website’s backlinks. If a site has been penalized by Google, or the website has been penalized by the Google Penguin algorithm update, then it’s necessary to take the time to try to get the low quality and toxic links that are pointing to your website removed. I have actually a pretty good response rate when it comes to contacting the site owners. Many are very helpful and will remove links if you ask politely. [Read more...]

3 Great Safe Alternatives to Guest Blogging

Guest blogging for SEO purposes started its downfall recently, especially with Google penalizing MyBlogGuest, and before that it was Google finding and penalizing advertorials. And before that, it was paid links in general. It’s not that Google’s against those advertising vehicles, it’s that they don’t want SEOs and website owners manipulating their algorithm, gaming the system so to speak, and “buying links that pass PageRank“. And now, if it’s paid, we all know that it’s not just Google’s problem: the United States FTC has also spoken up. [Read more...]

Google Penguin Recovery: Site Owner Doesn’t Know About Resources Page on His Site

I spend a few hours each day helping site owners and business owners recover from the dreaded Google Penguin algorithm update. I thought that I had received crazy emails from site owners who don’t know how to update their website. But it’s also amazingly hilarious to me when I run into a site owner who doesn’t even know that certain pages exist on their website.

Let’s take, for example, a site owner named “Lee”. I sent him an email recently about getting a link on his “resources.html” page removed from his site, which is an obviously spammy type of link scheme page. It has at least 50 outgoing links on the page, and it’s all to off-topic sites:

> Hi Lee,
> Recently when we reviewed all of the links to, we noticed that your website is linking to on this page here:
> I'm wondering if you would remove this link on your website to
> Thank you, Bill (on behalf of

After my email, Lee responded a few days later, with this:

Subject:   	Re: Question about
From:   	"Lee XXXXXXXXX" 
Date:   	Wed, March 12, 2014 3:34 pm
Priority:   	Normal
Options:   	View Full Header | View Printable Version  | Download this as a file

On 3/11/2014 6:27 PM, XXXXXXXXX wrote: I am not sure where that came from. We did not authorize any links, and i would not even know how to do such a thing. I do not know how to undo what you say happened.  In fact I do not know where to begin. Lee

I responded to Lee, asking him if he had access to his website and whether. I also asked him if he was going to be able to remove that page on his site or if he still could remove the link. I have not heard back from him yet.

I suspect that a lot of business owners, especially those who are not as technical, don’t know about certain pages on their websites that their webmasters have built or added to their website. Pretty much now a “resources.html” page on a website isn’t recommended, especially if you are going to link out to sites that are off-topic.