It's funny how ideas for a blog entry pop into your head.
This morning I woke up and checked the email I received for my online store. I found a 'nice' letter from another website looking to exchange links to each others sites. So it got me thinking, have you ever looked at a website and found a page where they provided links to their competitors? If so, have you ever wondered why sites that are in competition with each other would do this? It's like walking into Target and finding a sign that says, 'Shop at Walmart!'
Well, if you haven't come across this practice you can find it on my site by looking at my links page. This goes back to the question of why would a site do this? It's all related to Search Engine Optimization (SEO). One thing Google takes into account when doing their rankings is how many sites are linking to your site. There are a few types of links; one being the reciprocal link. This is a link where you and another website exchange links. In the end, it helps both sites improve their ranking in Google. So if you're starting an online store it can actually be helpful to work with your competitor rather than work against them. Besides, within the sports cards business we've seen so many variations of cards and sets of the years there is no way one store can carry everything a buyer is looking for, so why not help collectors find alternative sources to build their collections? Besides, if you provide a quality service you shouldn't worry about people not coming back.
I have more to say about this topic of linking and the email I received this morning but I'm going to keep this entry short. Look out for my next entry (hopefully tomorrow) where I outline a new type of 'box break' which I plan to blog about in the coming weeks.