Order a free seo audit

Reciprocal links. An idea worthy of a master or an own goal?

5 minutes of reading
Reciprocal links. An idea worthy of a master or an own goal?
Category SEO

How do you define link building strategies? When you are talking about link building strategies, there are typically three types of links that come to mind: inbound links, outbound links, and reciprocal links. In this article, we’ll explore the idea of reciprocal linking and how it fits into the overall picture of effective link building strategies.


Link building is the process of acquiring links from other websites to your own. A link from one site to another is like a vote or endorsement for the quality of your site. The more high-quality links you have, the higher your site will rank in search engine results pages, and the more traffic you’ll get. But what about reciprocal linking – do reciprocity links work?

Features of a good link

The most important element that we must pay attention to is quality. Only later does the number of links come into play. In the eyes of Google, a valuable link is one that:

  • is thematically matched,
  • comes from a valuable domain,
  • is natural,
  • takes a visible location in the text,
  • uses attributes and tags.

What is reciprocal linking?

Reciprocal linking is when two websites agree to link to each other. This was once a popular link building strategy because it was an easy way to get links. However, reciprocal linking is no longer as effective as it once was. There are many high quality sites that don’t offer reciprocal linking and if you are seeking organic rankings for your site, then you should avoid this strategy.

If you still want to take the risk and pursue this link building strategy, make sure you target sites that are relevant to your niche and aren’t spammy or low quality.

How common are reciprocal links on the web?

Reciprocal links are two-way links between websites. In other words, website A links to website B and website B links back to website A. They used to be quite common on the web and were often used as a link building strategy. But nowadays, they’re not as common because Google doesn’t give them as much weight as they used to. A study by Moz found that only 4.8% of all linking domains were reciprocal.

Google’s stance on reciprocal linking

Google’s Matt Cutts has stated that reciprocal linking is not something they recommend because it doesn’t add value to the web. He says that if two sites are willing to link to each other because they think it will help their rankings, then that’s not a very good reason.

However, he also says that there are some exceptions to this rule, such as when two sites have similar content and linking to each other could help users find what they’re looking for.

How does Google evaluate the value of links?

The search engine uses two algorithms for this purpose. There are hundreds of thousands of pages on the web, the number of which is growing day by day. In order not to waste time evaluating them, the algorithms focus on the quality and number of links, and then rank the pages. This classification is dealt with by the first and oldest algorithm – PageRank. It is supported by the Penguin algorithm, whose task is to reduce spam on the web and lower the ranking of websites that try to manipulate link building.


  • It is one of the easiest link-building techniques.
  • It is not time consuming.
  • It is cost-effective.
  • It gives mutual benefits.
  • You link to similar services as yours.

… and cons

  • It doesn’t give you external links.
  • Often the sites with whom you want to establish a link have a higher rank than your site, so it becomes difficult sometimes in convincing the webmasters that are very strict about their rules.
  • It can be manipulative.

How to build your network with reciprocals?

Networking is a great way to build relationships with other businesses in your industry. When you network, you can exchange business cards, learn about new opportunities, and get referrals. One way to network is by reciprocal linking, which is when two businesses agree to link to each other’s websites. While reciprocal linking can be beneficial, it’s important to make sure that you’re only linking to high-quality websites. Otherwise, you could end up hurting your own ranking. One way to ensure that you’re only linking to high-quality websites is by checking their PageRank.

Impact of reciprocal link on SEO

In the early days of SEO, reciprocal linking was considered an effective way to build links and improve search engine rankings. However, Google’s algorithm has evolved over the years, and reciprocal linking is no longer as effective as it once was. In fact, if done improperly, reciprocal linking can actually hurt your strategy.

How do I know my link is not very good?

Monitoring is the best method. Of course, you don’t have to do it manually, you have several useful tools at your disposal. The first is Google Search Console, which allows you to analyze the profile of links and their number. However, it is not enough, so use others, e.g. Moz, SEMrush, Majestic, Ahrefs.

Make an appointment for a free audit of your website
Order a free seo audit

In conclusion

Although reciprocal linking can be a beneficial strategy, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons before deciding if it’s the right fit for your website. You don’t want to engage in any activities that could result in search engine penalties, so be sure to do your research. If you do decide to pursue reciprocal linking, start with smaller websites in your industry and gradually build up to bigger websites.

Aleksandra Pietrzak
Curator at the National Museum in Poznań, graduate of Art History at the Jagiellonian University and Contemporary Art at the Pedagogical University of Krakow, curator of exhibitions and author of scientific and popular texts. A lover of contemporary art, literature and travel.
Also check
Are you wondering why your website is NOT SELLING?
Schedule a free SEO consultation and find out how we can improve your sales results.

Rate the article
Average rating 5/5 - Number of ratings: 9
Add comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Would you like to see what else we have written about?

Link reclamation. How to regain lost link value?
Link reclamation. How to regain lost link value?
It's a well-known fact that links are the lifeblood of every website, and with good reason. But what happens if you lose a link? Link reclaation comes into play.
Knowledge is power. SEO audit – an effective method to check the quality of your own website
Knowledge is power. SEO audit – an effective method to check the quality of your own website
The world's largest currency is information. Those who have knowledge can use the available tools. It is no different in SEO, which is why it is so important to be aware of the need to audit a website.
Flexible SEO optimization. What are KPIs and how to choose them for your own strategy?
Flexible SEO optimization. What are KPIs and how to choose them for your own strategy?
How to consciously manage a website? Blog, shop, company website - each of them has its own data. What are KPIs for SEO and why are they so important?

Get started

with the comprehensive
SEO audit

Invest in a detailed SEO audit and understand your online performance. We analyze your website to get a clear view of what you can improve.

  • I Please send us a message first for the introduction.
  • II Then, our SEO Expert gets back right to you with a phone call.
  • III We schedule a consultation in time that works for you.
  • IV The SEO Expert audits your website and provides strategic recommendations on how to improve your performance.
  • V You'll get the SEO report with a comprehensive look at numerous search ranking factors such as technical items, on-page, content, and off-page metrics.