A link wheel is an SEO term that refers to a set of web 2.0 sites built around and linked to your main money site. Each site is linked to one other site and to the money site so that they form a wagon wheel layout (see diagrams here).
I also like to add two other sites randomly into the “ring” that aren’t linked to my money site. Why? To break the pattern so search engines don’t penalize me.
I like to think of a link wheel as building your own direct referral network that tells people, “Hey, this site is worth going to if you need this product.” This is also one of the ranking factors that Google uses. Having good sites linking to you indicates “expert” status and can improve your rank.
By using high ranking Web 2.0 sites such as Squidoo, Hubpages and Weebly, you can build quick indexing mini sites from articles. Plus, these sites are seen as authority sites by the search engines. If you use your own domains, it may take a long time to build them into sites considered authorities in your niche.
One of the time saving tricks I have discovered is to use Fiverr.com to hire a person to build the link wheels for me. I supply 12 original articles, often written by an outsourcer, and they do the heavy lifting for me… and it only costs me $5! As I like to say, “A bargain at half the price!” (My wife doesn’t understand it either.)
Don’t misunderstand me, the work isn’t always the highest quality but when you do find someone who does a good job, you can hire them over and over as needed.
Once you have your link wheel, you need to get it indexed so I suggest that you ping the site URLs using Pingdevice.com and you build a set of social bookmark links to each. Starting with 10 links this gives you: 10 sites with 10 links linking to them that link back to your money site.
That’s not a bad start!
I’ve seen many discussions on link wheels in the forums and there is varying support for them. Some people say they’re a waste of time and they don’t work yet many people swear by them. I like to see it as part of a site strengthening and link building strategy. The best way to get a site indexed is to have it “discovered”. For example, someone recommends it to Google because it finds a link on their site to yours. A link wheel does this for you.
A group of sites recommending you must carry some weight if only a little and the evidence shows that Google does show favor to pages/mini sites created on Web 2.0 platforms. You only have to search to see Squidoo pages showing at the top of the SERPs. A high ranking page linking to you could also bring extra direct traffic.
So what has been your experience with link wheels? Have you experimented with them and what have been your results? I’m sure the comments will be wide and varied. I look forward to reading the comments you submit.