Link Love vs Lack of Love

B. Durant said:

“I’d be interested in knowing why you are so strict when it comes to linking to other websites. I understand quality control but listening to the interview it was almost as if you’d rather not see any links at all but being that this is the world wide web you hold your nose and swallow it down.”

You’ve heard the old saying that you are judged by the friends you keep, right? Websites are judged by the friends they link.

If we link to bad friends (known as “bad link neighborhoods”), we’ll be judged as being just as bad as those sites having just endorsed them via an outbound link.

In addition, we value providing our users a POSITIVE USER EXPERIENCE. Links to sites that deliver a negative user experience reflect poorly on us and everyone connected with the EzineArticles system. Ideal EzineArticles expert authors also want to associate themselves with others of the same respect; therefore to continue to earn their respect, we must reject members who link to sites that break user trust.

Don’t get me wrong; we love links to other sites and this is a CRITICAL component to the value proposition that EzineArticles makes to its’ members! The only way we can reach our goal of being our members highest non-search engine referrer of traffic is by outbound links from the Resource Box of every article we host. Last month, over 3.62 MILLION outbound visitors left EzineArticles to surf the sites of our members.

You’d be floored if I showed you how many thousands of our members have submitted great articles that we had to reject because the links in their articles went to “UNDER CONSTRUCTION” websites or their articles talked about one subject and then they linked to something absolutely completely and utterly having nothing to do with their expertise or what they just shared in the article (we view this as user-deception (regardless as to if it was on purpose or not)).

Get this: Right now we have 951 articles soft-rejected because the link in their resource box goes to a dead/invalid website. Dead links provide a poor user experience obviously.

The stakes are huge and thus, the strictness will continue to rise as it has since day one. This ensures value for those who continue to get their articles accepted every day without any problems.


Jay writes:

Hey Chris.

Great thoughts.. thanks for sharing there.



Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 7:02 AM


Geoff writes:

Can`t argue with you on this. Thanks for the explanation. Quality is important, not just in article content, but in links to other sites, too.

Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 7:25 AM



I’m slowly figuring the link thing out: made my first blooper yesterday, learned more. for those of us whose topics are not primarily web-based, (and whose mindsets are only slowly adjusting to the technology) more of these blog posts will be helpful. quality and quantity are a lot… but savvy, that counts too… another way to stretch once you get rhythm going. thanks! Ann

Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 7:35 AM


Jan Verhoeff writes:

Soft-rejects if my link doesn’t work, saves me embarrassment. While I try to double check and recheck my links, there’s always a chance that a capital letter, or some other small inconsistency will sneak trough. The benefit is mine when EzineArticles rejects an article for something I missed seeing.

Thank you EzineArticles,


Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 7:36 AM



I understand the issue regarding links. It’s all about quality control. And, when dealing with hundreds of new submissions on a daily basis, one has to have strict rules or else the integrity of EzineArticles directory is compromised.

Having dead or invalid links is of no benefit to the reader or the author both in the short or long term.

One thing I have noticed though is the in the Diagnostic Centre I often have reports of links as being invalid when they are absolutely fine. I recognise that these reports are generated automatically but I’d recommend authors to check their Diagnostic Centre regularly to keep on top of this.


Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 8:29 AM


Shirley Bass writes:

12.10.08 Interestingly enough to me, I was notfied that I have my first bad link in my resource box. I haven’t as of yet, checked it out to see what I did wrong. I know it didn’t feel very good to see that I have an unapproved article.

I can see that bad links are bad for business. I can also see they need to be related to the topic.

Hum…Well, I am off to fix my mistake. That article is important to me, because it means I am half way to my goal of having 100 articles published at EzineArticles. Excited about that 50 article mark!

Shirley Bass

Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 10:54 AM


Debra writes:

Great response and makes sense.

Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 10:55 AM


Kathi Calahan writes:

Quality, not quantity. Timely reminder. Thank you.

Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 11:59 AM




If it was “QUALITY, NOT QUANTITY” … would have 1,000 articles in it instead of 1 million.

My point: :) BOTH COUNT.

They both count for us and they both count for every member of EzineArticles.

Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 12:25 PM


B. Durant writes:

Wow, didn’t expect an entire post dedicated to my question. Thanks for the explanation. Sometimes it helps to know the method behind the madness when you’re on the outside peering in.

Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 9:51 PM


Edward Weiss writes:

EZA is an authority site. You’d think more people would take the time and prepare their aritcles for inclusion. But it’s usually these same people who are the quickest to point the finger to others and scream foul.

By the way, are we getting any link juice with these comment posts?

Comment provided December 10, 2008 at 10:38 PM


Jan Verhoeff writes:

Edward, When you type your website in, it’s what comes up when folks click on your name at the top of your post — nice site.


Comment provided December 11, 2008 at 12:06 AM


Bob Crawford writes:

I’m sure this post will clarify things for some people. Think about your own site and who and where you link to. I’ve turned down many link exchange requests simply because they offered no value to my visitors – I’m not going to jeopardize my page rank for a link to a bad ‘neighborhood’.
Keep your outbound links relevant and you’ll do fine!

Comment provided December 11, 2008 at 7:34 AM




The answer is YES, you do get link juice from your blog comments here.

Comment provided December 11, 2008 at 9:03 AM


Shirley Bass writes:


After Jan’s comment, I had to check out your site. I bookmarked it. Very nice. My spouse would love to learn how to play the…

Shirley Bass

Comment provided December 11, 2008 at 9:54 AM


Mike Hutchins writes:

This is web 101, linking to sites that are thought of as link farms or have a bad listing in search engine eyes will hurt you if you link to them.

This is good for any webmasters on here… don’t just trade links and post links to other sites without doing some investigation.

Comment provided December 12, 2008 at 12:09 PM


Paul Godines writes:

I like the idea of providing a POSITIVE USER EXPERIENCE, and support any decision that secures it.

Comment provided December 16, 2008 at 11:20 PM


George writes:

Hi Chris,

Somewhat of an unrelated question – in terms of building links to articles, are authors allowed to drive incentivized traffic to their articles?

I am NOT talking about bulk traffic purchase options such as dodgy sites that sell 100,000 visitors for $19.99, most of which are bots.

Instead, I am referring to programs such as the one operated, say, by a well-known domain name forum, where you earn forum currency for making valuable posts and where you can then spend that currency to reward other forum users for visiting a link.

Please clarify – I emphasize that these are all human visitors we’re talking about here, NOT a bunch of bots, scripts or what have you.

Merry Christmas!


Comment provided December 19, 2008 at 8:52 PM




PPV (Pay Per View) of your articles will be against our TOS shortly. We have a revised terms of service that will be released soon.

Humans paid to visit your articles to drive up your article view counts so your article makes it into our most viewed articles in the past 90 days list is considered “gaming the system.”

Comment provided December 20, 2008 at 7:46 AM


Bill writes:

Ive been preaching relavancy for years. I can’t understand why SEMers just don’t get it. Those #s are outrages for 951 articles soft-rejected because the link in their resource box goes to a dead website. Why do people waste thier time if they arnt going to do things right.

Comment provided February 18, 2009 at 7:29 PM


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