Link Exchanges – Ranting – Can the SEO Industry be this STUPID !!

by on March 2, 2011

I don’t often rant on this blog (if ever), compared to a lot of other places that highlight the stupidity within our industry on a regular basis. Maybe it’s the week I am having, but the following link exchange email from an SEO company in the UK made me flip out a little (not to be part of the new outing brigade, details are kept private) please note I have added comments in red:

Link Exchange Email

Subject: Link Exchange  proposal - (Terrible subject, make it interesting, introduce your company/self in the subject)

Message: Dear webmaster, - (Great, I am not even worth calling by my first name, even though it would of taken 1 minute to grab this from the About page)

I just visited your website. After reviewing your website, I thought
you would be a great resource for exchanging link. (I should be honored this dim wit felt my site is worth linking to after a thorough review, god bless him, my hard work is paying off. Of course, he hasn’t attempted to show any content he found interesting or why my site is a great resource, but I trust him and believe in his opinion 100%)

There is following our link details once you will add then confirm
the same. - (Is that the English language he is butchering. No foreplay with this guy, straight into business)

By using following details:
Title: seo company
URL: XXX
Description: XXXX
Inreturn
We will add your link here,

XXXX

Great offer, I add a link to their company on my home page and they provide a f*cking s**t links page, where I can get a link – wooo hooo – what a day.

Awaiting for your response

Thanks & Regards,

Link Exchange Expert - (Holy s**t a link exchange expert, after passing out, it began to dawn on me how lucky I was to be contacted by an actual expert at sending rubbish, generic emails)
MY REPLY

Hi MR X

Just a couple of points on your email:

- Starting a link exchange email as “Dear Webmaster” is a crime in today’s world. This immediately gives me a poor impression of your company. I just took a look at your site and I like it, but you have just made me think your company is a pile of s**t with one email. At least look at the About page and start the email with my name.

- The email is generic. This is really poor. Again, terrible impression of your company. Try to personalise it. It’s not hard – look through my blog and look for a post you can reference in your email. At least pretend you know who I am and that you read my content. Don’t just look at the Google PageRank Toolbar and think, “Hey, another person to send a generic email to”. Christ, I work in SEO, make an effort to not look stupid.

- Calling yourself the “Link Exchange Expert” is no better than saying “Spam Expert” or “Twat”. Link exchanging isn’t something you should try and be an expert in, try proper link building, people marketing, relationship building. Maybe you should take a course ?

- You obviously have your own powerful link network i.e. (“example site taken out to protect seo company”). If you want to get a better return on these emails (after you have put a little more effort into them as per above) – you are better offering a 3 way link to people who actually know what they are doing. Link exchanging is about as current as having a mullet. You do know its 2011. You do know I understand f*cking SEO. Why would I stick a link to your company site on my home page in return for giving me a shitty link on on your links page- wow look, you even called it a nice link page name – good god. If you had offered me a link from one of your network sites, it would of at least showed you had some type of idea of what you are doing.

All in all your email is the reason I find the SEO world mind numbing at times. Please at least try to add some integrity to our field by educating yourself with some of the basic principles of people marketing and relationship building. F*ck me, how hard is it to put together a proper email at least.

Thanks

IN SUMMARY

Stupidity in the SEO and Social Media world (for the most part, people you meet in Analytics + CRO tend to be a lot more bearable) is rife and usually it doesn’t bother me. But generic link exchange emails in the SEO industry is kind of mind boggling to me.

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  • A Genius

    It's obviously an automated email. If he sends out 5,000 of these a week and gets 50 links (1% conversion rate), he's doing well no?

  • searchbrat

    What kind of damage is being done to the reputation of the company he is trying to exchange links for ? Is it worth getting 50 exchange links that will most likely be devalued by Google anyway ? What kind of sites in the SEO market would link exchange in the first place, most people know they are of little value, so no doubt those 50 would be from weak sites.
    That's 5000 companies that now have a poor opinion of their services. Word of mouth marketing still exists. I don't see it being a good trade off.

  • http://www.searchbrat.com Kieran Flanagan

    Hey Michael

    I probably shouldn’t have been surprised. Since writing that post I had 5 more link exchange requests from other companies. I suppose there is a whole gang of low level SEO companies that still get results using automated bots to spam the crap out of link exchange, directories, article spinning. Problem for these companies is the ROI on these activities is eroding fast.

    Thanks

  • Michael

    Kieran,

    Were you surprised at all by the company that sent this out? Should they have known better or from looking at their website are they just clueless?

  • searchbrat

    Hey Michael

    I probably shouldn’t have been surprised. Since writing that post I had 5 more link exchange requests from other companies. I suppose there is a whole gang of low level SEO companies that still get results using automated bots to spam the crap out of link exchange, directories, article spinning. Problem for these companies is the ROI on these activities is eroding fast.

    Thanks

  • http://www.submitshop.co.uk/ seo services

    5000
    companies that now have a poor opinion of their services. Word of mouth
    marketing still exists. I don't see it being a good trade off.

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