Links building software will always be in demand for as long as number of incoming links will continue to determine the ranking of your site and individual pages. While your blog permits you to build incoming links a more natural way – who wouldn’t like a little bit of automation? Huh?
Today I want to share a link building plugin I have learned about by reading Jack Humphrey’s post on WordPress Plugins for SEO and Link Building. I was wondering for a quite a bit what he was using to present Related Websites on his blog posts and now I got to experiment with that plugin myself. While the jury is still out on its usefulness – it seem to have a good promise…
Related Websites Plugin is free to download and install but before you get your API key that will make your blog full participant within the service – your blog have to be manually approved. I can tell you right away that Kevin Gillett, developer who also maintains the service is pretty strict and if you blog doesn’t publish unique content – you can just ignore this post all together.
Niche blogs filled with PLR content will not pass the manual validation – so please don’t try to submit it!
This very fact was what made me to continue using plugin even after I’m seeing some strange results. Getting incoming links from quality blogs is very important and manual approval process seem to ensure it, or so I continue to hope.
What Does Related Websites Plugin Do?
Main promise behind the plugin is a targeted traffic to your blog and it accomplishes it via several means:
- Related Websites dynamic link exchange. You can either insert a code where you want the related websites to be shown on your blog post or it will do it on its own. It really is up to you. You can’t control which sites will appear but you do have control over number of sites and if you want to show excerpt or not as well as few styling options. Although name states “Related Websites” in my experience through observation on my own blog – relevance is not very high. And only the fact that blogs are decent quality makes me feel more comfortable about it.
- Related Posts option. As a bonus you can display your own related posts on your posts and in your feed. Quite nice option if you don’t already use some form of Related Posts plugin, as it allows you to create highly relevant internal links structure. I haven’t tested this option as I use Simple Tags plugin to accomplish same but based on what I see on Jack’s blog – it works very well.
- Boost your authority through the above. Yep – number of incoming links from quality blogs “theoretically” should help you become more authoritative. I don’t know how well this plugin will do for this option as I have been using for a short time and have no results to show.
- Get you traffic. This one does work although I think it will greatly depend on quality of your headline writing. My own results are sub-par to say the least.
I have started using plugin about 2 weeks ago and while I have seen a quick and large boost of number of incoming links – it just dropped all of a sudden. I plan to give it a bit more of time to see if it improves but as you see in image below – I currently link out to more blogs then I get back.
I do have to say that there is a Paid version of the service that supposedly creates a more favorable spread of links and traffic but I haven’t tested it so I can’t speak on the fact. While I will continue to test the plugin – you might want to check it out for yourself, while free option is still available.
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UPDATE 08/19/09: While you are still welcome to test the plugin for yourself – I have disabled it on my blog since number of links to me dropped to Zero. While I understand the underlying idea as stated by Kevin in comment below – personally I’m not satisfied with re-distribution of links plugin currently provides.
My personal recommendation – until author figures out how to create a consistent, even distribution of links don’t install it or shoot for paid version as Kevin promises it will provide you with positive traffic flow. Big idea behind this plugin is to help you rank better and if Google were to use current numbers provided by this plugin – I link out to whole bunch of blogs getting nothing in return, sorry – not going to work for me.