In the ever expanding arsenal of SEO experts and wannabes, there are a large number of options for getting better rankings on the SERPs; some of the more common ones include things like article marketing and blog commenting. However the more creative options include thinks like link wheels and link pyramids.
Need A Way to Get Around Buying Links
Since Google doesn’t like it when you buy links, they tend to discount links that they believe have been created artificially (i.e. by using various SEO tactics) rather than naturally (i.e. because people thought your stuff was good and they linked to it).
The trouble is that when you have all these easy to get links (forum profiles, web 2.0 properties, etc.) Google’s algorithm immediately discounts them somewhat since they know you could easily have placed them yourself. Therefore, in order to make the links look more natural, link wheels and link pyramids have been created.
How a Link Wheel Works
Basically, the idea of a link wheel or a link pyramid is that you don’t link directly to your website from an artificially created link elsewhere on the web. Instead, just like a pyramid, you link from site C to site B which in turn links to site A. The intention is to confuse Google into thinking that this is simply natural linking rather than artificial link building.
A second way to do this is through the link wheel. Here, you create a series of web 2.0 sites (i.e. Blogger, Tumblr, WordPress.com, etc). Each one includes two links, one to the next web 2.0 site and a second link back to your blog. The idea is that when Google sees these, it assumes that this is a regular blog which is linking out to other blogs on the web.
Of course, there is a catch; several catches actually. First of all, the pattern is pretty easy for Google to spot algorithmically. When site A points to site B which points to site C which points to site D which points to site E which points to site F which points back to site A, it’s not too difficult to follow the pattern to the logical conclusion and to realize that these were all artificially created.
The second issue with a link wheel is that in order to make these look like natural blogs and not like something you created in order to get additional backlinks, you need to constantly update the blogs in the link wheel with unique content every week or two, just as a real blog would be updated.
Are Link Wheels Useless Then?
I’d say that if you create a link wheel in the traditional way that it’s done, then yeah, it’s pretty useless. On the other hand, if you were to create a link wheel which doesn’t always send link juice back to your site but which also sends it to other random sites and to random spokes on the link wheel, it can be very powerful. Of course then, you are in essence running a whole series of blogs which kind of defeats the purpose of doing the link wheel to begin with.