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For a long time, generating reciprocal links has been an important tactic for many inbound linking strategies.

no reciprocal linksBut reciprocal links are no longer viable. Google has pulled the plug on those that have done so, and they now discount all reciprocal links. Google has changed their algorithm to identify the exchange of links by two parties. Generating reciprocal links for the purpose of increasing their number of inbound links is now penalized in the search engine results.

Google has decided that the concept of employing reciprocal links defies their original intention of providing honest search results.

They have always felt that quality content should attract links. The exchange of links is nothing more than a mutual agreement to game the system and to unjustifiably promote the content of others. This has always had the end goal of promoting one’s self, and Google is cracking down on the practice by penalizing those who do it.

Some even claim that Google is now able to identify three-way linking schemes.

In using this tactic, webmasters of website A send links to website B, who then links to website C, who links back to website A.

Whether Google is actually doing this is hard to say.

One thing is for certain, however. Inbound linking strategies should NOT be focused on reciprocal linking. This phony form of link creation will get you smacked down and will get you penalized. It’s more than a waste of time – it’s a negative.

Instead, focus on creating engaging and unique content on your site. The links will come.

Jim Penrose founded Penrose Marketing in 1981. The company is located in Silicon Valley and has served companies of all sizes and all over the world with their digital marketing services. Jim has an MBA from the Hass School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.

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