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Turning Crumbs into Meals

Red Bellied Woodpecker

Red Bellied Woodpecker

The woodpeckers and grackles are messy eaters. When they go at the suet on my back porch, they scatter chunks of nut-filled beef kidney fat all over the catch board I built under the feeder. When I build web sites with link pages, the link pages are like those little chunks. They get scattered and forgotten, but they have enough page rank left to be attractive morsels to lesser-ranked and newer sites.

So, to stretch the metaphor even further, I’m apparently a messy eater. When I build a site, my link pages usually wind up with substantial page rank on their own. It’s most likely a result of good internal link architecture, and the occasional outside link directly to the link page itself. These little chunks of PageRank attract smaller birds who want a piece of the action, and since those smaller birds usually have no smaller chunks of their own left over, I just ignore them.

But occasionally I get a request from a small bird (of the same species, or subject matter) who has a nice chunk of suet (a site with decent PageRank), but for some reason the front page is eating it all, and the link page has no PageRank. Since I’ve suffered this phenomenon myself, I have sympathy for the webmaster, er, small bird, and, if the subject matter is on point enough, I’ll do the link exchange. And then I’ll do something like this post to try to help the link page get the PR it so richly deserves.

The lesson here? If a site is close enough to yours subject-wise, and has any page rank on the home page at all, exchange links with them. Like-minded sites, regardless of their rank, are extremely valuable. So are the webmasters who work on them. Getting on the good side of the “small birds” can be extremely beneficial, especially when that bird grows up! The more you help those guys, the more they’ll help you. So, when you see that email asking for a link to a site that is very much like yours, go for it! After all, if you eat enough little chunks of suet, you’ll get just as full as if you ate only a few big chunks.

One Comment leave one →
  1. 07/02/2010 11:34 am

    That’s a great analogy between messy birds eating and Internet marketing and webdesign … I’ve never heard it put that way.

    Great job!

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