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Directory - Linkfarm
Posted 03 September 2004 - 01:43 PM
I work a lot together with students and one of the tasks was to find directories to submit to. And then it happened:
She asked me what is the different between linkfarms and directories....
And I said...
Therefore I am asking all you where is the exact difference and how can we distinguish between both?
thanks for help..
Posted 03 September 2004 - 01:57 PM
Posted 03 September 2004 - 02:16 PM
This isn't as common today, but you are almost always in a link farm if you are required to link to more than one site.
Linking to and from a single member of a link farm isn't a problem - it's when you start doing it to multiple members that you actually "join".
A current fad is that I link to you, you link to a third site, and the third site links back to me, thus avoiding reciprocal links. Which sounds interesting to some people.
But there is a clear relationship, and Google is very good at sniffing out link relationships (it's the basis of their engine and philosophy) and doesn't work too well. There are a few variations on this that can do well for a while, but eventually it catches up.
In short, once you have more than two sites involved, it's usually a link farm.
Now there is a third option that your employee may have been thinking about - a "bad neighbourhood". This is usually, but not necessarily, a link farm. Most often it's a variation of the 3 site linking fad I mentioned above.
In theory, you can join a bad neighbourhood by trading links with a single website. In practice, I suspect you would need more than that, but I'm not willing to put my clients at risk over it. This would be an issue with a directory.
A link TO someone is a vote of confidence and is totally under your control, so you can be penalized for linking out, which could happen in a reciprocal relationship with a directory.
Choose your friends carefully, your enemies will choose themselves....
Posted 03 September 2004 - 08:38 PM
This is not a technical analysis of this subject; it's just my reaction.
When I think of a directory, I think of a resource with quality. The website actually points to useful and informative references. On the other hand, I think of a link farm as pointing to a bunch of URLs whose relevance is unclear and questionable.
The motive behind the directory is to provide a genuinely useful resource for people (and, yes, maybe to make some money ). It seems to me that the motive behind link farms is to simply boost link popularity, traffic and rankings. (Whether it works or not is another question.)
Edited by jspope, 03 September 2004 - 08:43 PM.
Posted 03 September 2004 - 10:01 PM
Posted 04 September 2004 - 03:52 AM
When is a link farm just a link farm, and when does a load of collected links equate to a directory?
Posted 04 September 2004 - 10:24 AM
Reciprocal linking as most think of it now, is not and has never been a link farm.
Directories are not link farms, at least none of the directories I have seen.
Posted 04 September 2004 - 11:39 AM
Not all link farms require you to link to all of their members, or to host one of their pages on your domain.
Some directories will ask for a link back from you.
So there's no hard and fast rule. You have to look at the way it's set up and ask yourself whether you believe it serves a purpose beyond link pop.
The one thing I'd say that's almost an absolute (and this is basically rewording my first post in this thread) is that if you don't have to link back to it in any way, it can't be a link farm. The exception to that would be a large network of interlinked domains that you have to pay to get listed on, but at least in those cases you don't have to worry about being penalized for linking to a bad neighborhood. The worst that can happen is that the money you spent on the link(s) will have been wasted.
Posted 05 September 2004 - 04:25 AM
I guess in the end, it comes down to intended purpose. If the intent is to go for PR with the demand that all sites listed, interlink, and specifically point back to the hub to boost its PR then its a link farming project.
If the intent is to create a useful collection of links to sites which the user may find helpful, such as is found in a directory, and the purpose is about usability and not PageRank, then it is not a link farm.
Posted 05 September 2004 - 05:41 AM
As with many spam tricks, It's often the intent in using a otherwise valid design technique that makes it spam. Which will make some things increasingly difficult if not impossible to use an algo to filter out.
Hidden divs in navigation for example, Is it there as part of a collapsing menu or simply to get more keyworded links in there ?
Posted 05 September 2004 - 07:17 PM
Posted 05 September 2004 - 07:25 PM
Posted 05 September 2004 - 07:37 PM
If they are related, I don't see that it is a linkfarm. Depends on how the engines see it, I guess.
But if I start a group of real estate agents who agree to refer business to each other, with the criteria being that only 1 agent per city or area can join the group and in doing so you link to the other members of the group... it may be spammy but I see it as good business.
Even if the engines see that as a linkfarm, I'll be getting relocation clients from it.
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