Exchanging articles could help to finally rid of the dreaded “link pages” once and for all. Let’s face it, websites could almost always use additional quality content. So why not make the “link page” into a useful article with embedded links? This seems to be a better long term strategy then simply just the usual link exchange, as the good content of the article page should eventually start drawing natural one-way links… thus achieving the ultimate goal of any page with good quality content.
There are three basic ways to solicit an article exchange. Exchanging articles is for the most part “uncharted” territory. Therefore the best method of solicitation is yet to be determined.
3 Methods of article exchange solicitation
Phone: One way to request an article exchange is by calling the webmaster directly and giving him/her our article exchange spiel.
- Pros: You’d be able to talk to a real person who is in charge of the site’s linking, and possibly build some good relationships with some webmasters.
- Cons: Direct phone numbers to a site’s webmaster are few and far between
US mail: Write personable letters addressed to owner of site or perhaps “webmaster”. Make sure the letter has some details about their site to let them know you’re serious and sincere.
- Pros: Physical addresses to website owners are more available then phone #’s to webmasters. Even if we don’t have the correct recipient listed on the envelope, what we put on the envelope should help “steer” the letter into the right hands.
- Cons: Letters may not get into the right hands sometimes. Letters obviously will have to be opened and read in order to be effective.
Email: Write emails to whoever is in charge of link building at a website.
- Pros: We can take advantage of the fact that most websites expect to receive “link requests”, thus there is a preexisting infrastructure we can use to solicit article exchanges.
- Cons: As with any link exchange email, it may not always be opened/read as many of these type of emails could be deemed “junk mail”.
The proposition itself will give the potential article exchange partner three options. In exchange for them letting us put a quality article on their site, they can choose to contribute one of the following:
- their text link information and we’ll write the content and link text for them
- their written contribution to the article’s subject in 40-70 words with one keyword phrase hyperlinked to their site
- an original article of 250+ words to be placed on its own page (on our client’s site) which links back to them only
The outcome of the performance of the article exchange program is yet to be determined. With some effort, I think this new type of link exchange will start to takeoff. It’s just a matter of getting potential partners to try something new. Perhaps the best way to start such a new program would be to initially keep the current link page intact, as opposed to ridding of it and starting from scratch. This way you can “phase” it out, thus taking less risk.