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Old 12-16-2004   #1
funtent
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Having trouble believing in crosslinking penalties

I'm having trouble believing there's a penalty for dissimilar site crosslinking.

I have a Mac forum (I own and like Macs), a Volvo forum (I own and like Volvos), a Photography site (another hobby), an Apple audio application (Garageband) news site and an education news/blog rss aggregation site (don't ask). I link from each to all the others. They're all hosted on the same IP as part of an inexpensive, consumer-grade hosting plan.

I find it hard to believe that the engines would neg me because I have a bunch of sites that reflect my hobbies and interests, and I crosslink between them.

I went to Search Engine Strategies 2004 San Jose and heard Matt from Google speak at several sessions, and I believe I got a good feel for the tone of Google's ideals. And I believe that getting downgraded for crosslinking goes counter to that tone.
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Old 12-16-2004   #2
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funtent,

I don't believe that you will be penalized for cross-linking between unrelated sites, however, those links will not be weighted as heavily as links from sites that are of similar content or complimentary content.

Hope this lays your concern to rest.
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Old 12-16-2004   #3
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Ah, thanks Kevin. Maybe I'm mixing up what I've read here about the danger of sites on contiguous IP blocks (http://forums.searchenginewatch.com/...ead.php?t=1908) with simple crosslinking.
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Old 12-16-2004   #4
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I am of the opinion that its not just the crosslinking between sites with different topics that is a problem, but the degree of crosslinking between sites that may be done to boost rankings.

I too doubt that there is any problem with casual crosslinking between various sites that you own, but when those links start to be come run of site links using large blocks of keywords as anchor text, then yes I have seen entire rings of sites penalized for doing that.

While they may or may not be used at the moment, Google has patented ranking systems which do remove the influence of links from the same Class C block, which is at least an indication that their thinking runs along those lines and thus if might be only prudent to consider that factor when looking ahead.
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Old 12-19-2004   #5
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IMO, heavy inter/crosslinking can be seen as a potential links scheme, but the real danger comes if/when other potential links schemes are also in play.
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Old 12-19-2004   #6
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Just pondering it, but the worst scenario I can think of is that if a group of related sites sitting on the same hosting are cross-linked and one of them gets hit for linking to some bad neighborhoods, could there be a domino effect that will potentially damage them all seriously.
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Old 12-19-2004   #7
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While optimizing a jewelry site last year I became aware of a group of twenty sites that were all owned by the same person (though she took some care to use different names and addresses when registering the domains) all were hosted on different Class C blocks, each targeted on a particular aspect of the jewelry business and all linked to the home page of every other site with ROS anchor text.
While this site dominated the jewelry SERPs for nearly a year, they eventually all went to PR0. I really doubt that this was an automated penalty, but nevertheless a carefully arranged ranking scheme was busted, IMO as a result of heavy interlinking.
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Old 12-20-2004   #8
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funtent, look at it from Google's point-of-view. That is, why would a site about topic A link to another site on topic B. Perhaps they are trying to artificially inflate their PR and rankings, we better take a closer look....

Think of it like claiming a tax rebate. It is really worth getting busted trying to falsely claim a few $ and attract the attention of the tax department.

IMO, the bottom line is, the links are likely no good for PR, rank boosting or your site visitors, so why bother?
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Old 12-20-2004   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinSource
funtent,

I don't believe that you will be penalized for cross-linking between unrelated sites, however, those links will not be weighted as heavily as links from sites that are of similar content or complimentary content.

Hope this lays your concern to rest.
Agree - this isn't a penalty problem 'at all' but you are likely not getting the most out of the arrangement since external 'site wide' links are an easily recognizable pattern.

If for example you use the footer as your 'link exchange' you way wish to setup the footer as an iFrame.

This would reduce 'backlinks' while increasing link quality... working on the same principle as 'which is better':

1000 PR2 links from the same website (divided by the sum of all links per page), or
1 PR8 [the maximum transferable PR] divided by 4.

"If" the anchor text of the 1000 were all different - it 'might' win out' but in most instances the 1000 are all identical... thus limited value.
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Old 12-20-2004   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mel
While optimizing a jewelry site last year I became aware of a group of twenty sites that were all owned by the same person (though she took some care to use different names and addresses when registering the domains) all were hosted on different Class C blocks, each targeted on a particular aspect of the jewelry business and all linked to the home page of every other site with ROS anchor text.
While this site dominated the jewelry SERPs for nearly a year, they eventually all went to PR0. I really doubt that this was an automated penalty, but nevertheless a carefully arranged ranking scheme was busted, IMO as a result of heavy interlinking.
I suspect 'something else cause this downfall'.

There are tons of high profile networks that 'should' fall victim to this [SEW and Network for one] but don't.

The 'link' is merely ownership and the 'ownership part' by itself doesn't get the penalty.

Best example: phpBB - shouldn't exist... a million+ interlinked unrelated domains can't be wrong.

Last edited by fathom : 12-20-2004 at 05:15 AM.
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Old 12-20-2004   #11
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Quote:
Best example: phpBB - shouldn't exist... a million+ interlinked unrelated domains can't be wrong.
1 million+ forum homepage links to a forum software site seems very related to me.
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Old 12-20-2004   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fathom
I suspect 'something else cause this downfall'.

There are tons of high profile networks that 'should' fall victim to this [SEW and Network for one] but don't.

The 'link' is merely ownership and the 'ownership part' by itself doesn't get the penalty.

Best example: phpBB - shouldn't exist... a million+ interlinked unrelated domains can't be wrong.
I really don't see a comparasion between SEW and a chain of sites the have ROS anchor text links on every page linking to every other site. Surely you are not suggesting that SEW is interlinked to that degree?
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Old 12-20-2004   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Hawley
1 million+ forum homepage links to a forum software site seems very related to me.
hmmm... not sure what you are getting at?

If the anchor is the only thing that makes something 'related' how then can something be 'unrelated'.
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Old 12-20-2004   #14
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About how many independent inbound links were there, aside from that jewelry network's interlinked group of sites?
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Old 12-20-2004   #15
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Old 12-20-2004   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mel
I really don't see a comparasion between SEW and a chain of sites the have ROS anchor text links on every page linking to every other site. Surely you are not suggesting that SEW is interlinked to that degree?
Well I guess we need to define what "ROS anchor text links on every page linking to every other site." really is?

JupiterWeb, JupiterResearch, JupiterEvents and JupiterImages... if you go to each of these websites the exact same links are in the footer comments on every page of every site... is this or is this not the same as "ROS anchor text links on every page linking to every other site"?

I'm not suggesting this is wrong or 'bad' - actually I'm saying 'it's great!" It doesn't hurt - it's linking for ownership.

Be that as it may..... what is wrong with the thread starter doing it... or the jewelry network?
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Old 12-20-2004   #17
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If the anchor is the only thing that makes something 'related' how then can something be 'unrelated'.
You said they were 'unrelated'.
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Old 12-20-2004   #18
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You said they were 'unrelated'.
Yes I know... I also said "The 'link' is merely ownership and the 'ownership part' by itself doesn't get the penalty...

So we agree - thanks!
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Old 12-20-2004   #19
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As long as you are ingoring the fact I said "1 million+ forum homepage links to a forum software site seems very related to me."
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Old 12-20-2004   #20
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"The 'link' is merely ownership and the 'ownership part' by itself doesn't get the penalty...
So linking to bad neighbourhoods will never get you into hot water with Google
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