Recently a fellow beauty blogger friend of mine who participates in link roundups – like I do – was hit with a manual Google Penalty for ‘incoming unnatural links.’ When she asked what the cause was, Google told her one of her link roundups. As you can imagine, this caused quite a flurry of discussion among us bloggers. What do you do? Are Link Roundups Obsolete? Should you stop participating?
My recommendation on what you should do is still participate if you enjoy them. However, you should set the links to no-follow so that there is no risk of incurring a Google Penalty. I use a WordPress Plugin called Yoast, which allows me to easily set all links in a post to no-follow. I went and manually edited any post that I thought could be potentially problematic on my blog because of this.
How to Manually Set a Link to No-Follow
To set that manually, all you need to do is add <a rel=”nofollow” href=”URL”>Name of Link</a>
But what about groups that create original content and share each other’s links? Are those likely to incur a Google Penalty?
While they’re not likely to incur a penalty, it’s still better to play it safe rather than be sorry.
If you participate in a group that is like my Makeup Wars or Beauty Top Tens, use something like InLinkz to add your links. I absolutely love doing Makeup Wars and Beauty Top Tens. Everyone creates a post based on a theme and then using InLinks we all link to each others’ posts. I use the WordPress InLinkz plugin, which makes it easy to add the code to my site. There’s also code for Blogger and other non-Wordpress sites. InLinkz automatically makes links no-follow. It also allows you to upload an image – such as your logo or one from the post – as a thumbnail. It’s easy to use and it looks good on your blog.
No, I don’t think Link Roundups are obsolete, but I think that everyone needs to be mindful of Google’s stance on linking to each other. Even though you may think it is a natural link, it may come across as unnatural to Google. Because of that, it’s probably better to use no-follow with your links.
Do you participate in any link roundups? How do you handle this issue?