Aug 2 2007

The Effect “Link Trains” Can Have on your Blog

Over the past several months we’ve seen many “link trains” from the infamous “Z List” to Technorati Favs to Feed my Feed. Each list obviously is a little different, yet completely the same.

The Positive Side

I think these trains can really help out a brand new blogger, especially one who wouldn’t achieve a page rank without the “list”. By getting on the list early, you could be looking at dozens of link backs. This will not only increase your technorati rank but it will also build back links to your blog.

By participating in these themed links you may even achieve what the list is designed to do. Whether it’s to gain more subscribers or get more favorites. Any stat increase is a plus.

The Negative Effect

There are several negatives to these “Link Trains” which is why I don’t participate in them.

I strongly believe that Blog about your Blog stayed at a page rank 4 last update because of the Z List. It was great to get all of those linkbacks and really made our technorati score look real nice, however it literally cost me money. We were included on the Z List early and received the full effect. The good and the bad.

Invaluable Links

The “link train” links aren’t that valuable. The trains are essentially a list of URL’s in a post. Almost every word in the train is a link, and usually the list gets very long. With each blog added to the train, it potentially decreases the value of your link.

Many of the people who participate in the lists are newer bloggers that are trying to get links to their new blogs. This means that many of the links you are getting are even less valuable because they don’t have a page rank. The majority of the links you will get aren’t valuable and carry very little weight.

Trains Are A Thing of the Past

Personally I think link trains are a thing of the past. Yet, I still see many bloggers participating in such trains, and trying to create their “own”. To be unique, start a completely new idea.

Are you still on the link train?

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10 Comments on this post

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  1. Glen Allsopp said:

    Never participated in one and doubt I ever will, although I can see why people would get involved in them

    I have a new idea i will be launching in a week or two

    August 2nd, 2007 at 3:59 pm
  2. BeachBum said:

    I never tried a link train or a fav swap. The way I see it natural is the best way to go.

    BeachBum

    August 2nd, 2007 at 4:45 pm
  3. Jamaipanese said:

    my latest train almost doubled my technorati rank ^_^ (which continues to grow)

    lets see how it affects my pagerank

    August 2nd, 2007 at 6:27 pm
  4. derek said:

    Very interesting thoughts on the link trains. I’ve tried to refrain from doing too many of them but have participated in a handful. I’m usually torn as I don’t want to drop the ball and like to help others with the links but by the same token I don’t want to do too many of them.

    August 2nd, 2007 at 11:53 pm
  5. Rhys said:

    They do leave a sour taste in my mouth occasionally. Daily Web Ideas did a link train a few posts ago, and it completely put me off her blog.

    Good post.

    August 3rd, 2007 at 12:00 am
  6. Rhys said:

    Incidentally, I have been featured on a few link trains, I just haven’t posted them myself.

    August 3rd, 2007 at 12:00 am
  7. Chris said:

    I have benefited from them in the early days, but like you wouldn’t use them now.

    If you’re a brand new ‘personal’ blogger then go for it, otherwise I’d avoid.

    August 3rd, 2007 at 1:42 am
  8. Ad Tracker said:

    I have a new blog and have used a few link trains with surprising success. My Technorati rank went from 20 to 86 in one week. I know there is no monetary gain in that but it does lend a degree of statuss t a new blogger that has some value.

    I always feel like I am taking advantage of my reader’s patience when I post one, however, I haven’t yet suffered seriously.

    I think one thing that has helped me is keeping all of these type posts limited to Saturday morning only and then posting something above them by mid day.

    I have learned that if you don’t get on the link train early you are wasting your time, so I’m now being picky about which ones to join. I can easily see a time when I no longer participate but for now I think they are a neccessary evil.

    August 3rd, 2007 at 7:29 am
  9. Ed the Editor said:

    The average life of a blog is 120 days, so logically, I would think that most link trains initiated by low profile blogs are bound to end up full of broken links?

    August 5th, 2007 at 11:14 am
  10. Matt said:

    well just because they “die” doesn’t mean they get deleted

    August 5th, 2007 at 1:26 pm

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