About Those Link Exchange Offers

link exchange

It starts with a simple email. The sender explains that they’d like to exchange links with you – often called “reciprocal link exchange” – and that this would mean you placing a link to their site somewhere on your site and vice versa.

Have you thought about what this arrangement really means? Why a website – especially one that is not in the same subject area as yours – would want to exchange links with you? What actually happens when you post that link?

Why Exchange Links

For many sites, the goal is to appear in the top 10 search results on Google, Bing and other search engines for key words, such as genealogy. There are many factors that go into the algorithm or “formula” used by each search engine and this formula, like the formulas for Coke and Kentucky Fried Chicken – are top secret.

Using Google as an example, theories abound but one proven theory is that the more incoming links your site has, the higher your page rank. This is why some website owners will try to send out emails – spam emails – to lists of other website owners asking to exchange links.

Gaming The System

So rather than focus on websites in their same subject area, these website owners will target any and every type of website, especially those that have a higher page rank than theirs. This link exchange then is not based on a relationship of “I think your site adds value to the community or subject area, so let me post a link on my website,” but one of just collecting links to other sites.

Avoid The Pitch

Personally, I delete emails asking for a link exchange for the most part. If I happen to be familiar with the website and it is focused on genealogy, I might consider posting a link on one of my blogs or websites.

Just as with any relationship on the Internet, you really should know who you are dealing with when responding to these requests. And who knows, over time the “formula” for search engines may change and with all these links you may be doing more harm to your own ranking.

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee

GeneaBloggers Needs Twitter Followers


Well GeneaBloggers has broken Twitter.  Well not the entire Twitter, but our own Twitter account.

Due to certain limitations imposed by Twitter, we can’t follow any more Twitter users since we are now following just over 2,000 of you. So, we need to bring up the number of Twitter users following GeneaBloggers so they numbers are in synch.  Only then can we begin to follow more people.

So, if you’ve not already followed us, please click here to do so. Also pass along this info to your other Twitter followers.  Your help is greatly appreciated!

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee

A Genealogy Blog Primer – Updated

A Genealogy Blog Primer

In June 2009, we published a guide to genealogy blogging covering the hows and they whys and called it A Genealogy Blog Primer*.  Today we’re announcing an recent update which includes:

  • updated information and hyperlinks to genealogy blogs
  • an updated PDF file with large, easy-to-read type

You can click here to download the PDF format of the primer.

In addition, the primer and accompanying slide show are available for use by genealogists and genealogical societies who want to use it in lectures and meetings to spread the good word about the joy of genealogy blogging. Please contact us at geneabloggers@gmail.com for more information about utilizing this resource – for free!

* Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Genealogy Blogging But Were Afraid To Ask!

©2010, copyright Thomas MacEntee