09 Dec 2005

Webrings – A look at an old forgotten Traffic Tool.

Webrings – an old traffic tool for future SEO?

Google defines webrings

under these definations, I like the one from Dreamstalker the best, which defines webrings as:

A WebRing is a group of similar sites that are grouped together in a circular ring and each site is linked to another by a simple navigation bar. Generally, users can navigate forwards, backwards, skipping a certain number of sites, visit sites randomly, or see a list of all the sites on the ring.

If you’re unfamiliar with webrings let me point out an example site which has a webring:

Go here for an example webring page

if you scroll down a little you’ll see a box that looks like this


This is a very common "look" of a webring.  Most webrings have links for "Previous site, Next 5 sites, Random site, and next site". As well as a link to the founder of the webring.

Under this banner the author has a link for "see all the members of this webring" which leads to this page which is run by webring.com, and we can see the 33 sites that are a member of this Titanic webring (all sites having a Titanic theme behind them).

In the 90’s, webrings were in thier heyday. Search Engines weren’t that good (Remember that Yahoo ruled then, and it was a directory, it wasn’t a search engine), and webrings were a great way to find other related websites within a topic, and webrings were also a good way of gaining click through traffic as people who were interested in one site, would start clicking through the ring to find other related websites.

It’s been a few years since I’ve heard anything about webrings, but this morning I was thinking….hum…if each of my clients started a webring, and we made the code so that the links "counted"…wouldn’t this be a good SEO thing?   I don’t think this would be considered spam as you’d literally be helping to create the neighborhood of your sites topic so everything would be related.

Is a webring spam?…..or genius? What benefits or pitfalls do you see?


  1. Andy December 9, 2005 at 4:24 PM

    Genius! (Though I’m sure some punk would find a way to trash the concept by spamming it)

    Now I just need to find a way to get on the “$1 million webpage” webring, and start cashing in!

    On a completely unrelated note, you need to run a poll here asking how many people have ever bought anything as a result of SPAM or webspam.

  2. NeoNetMarketing December 9, 2005 at 7:10 PM

    Webrings – Blast from the Past

    Jim Boykin has a brainstorm about resurrecting web rings for SEO link building. I’d be worried that it will come across as spam. Still, it should be worth trying as an experiment.

  3. Frakkle December 9, 2005 at 7:56 PM

    Webrings – Can they be brought back to life?

    Jim’s hit on something simple here.?
    Webrings used to rule the roost for traffic.? I used to – and
    really still do – love them.? There’s one problem in todays SEO
    climate:? you get no link points (goes back to webrings.com or
    whoever runs it)

  4. frak December 9, 2005 at 8:00 PM

    I see the summary has cut out what I wanted to say so…

    1. Google has never been against webrings in the past
    2. Webrings define a neighbourhood – surely Google will like Webrings 2.0.

  5. werty December 11, 2005 at 3:56 AM


    I would say it is a good thing, just be smart about how you structure it. Maybe set up a webring directory/tool which allows users to easily create their own webring…

    brought to you by ringninja!

  6. Webrings and SEO -- Macalua.com December 11, 2005 at 11:44 PM

    […] I’ve been looking for a SEO article on webrings forever. Jim Boykin has started one but it doesn’t really dive to0 much into the relationship between webrings and SEO. This linkfarming method from the Web’s triassic era continues to bear fruit even today. I still see a few webring powered sites up in the SERP for some Philippine-related terms. I’ll put this marker out for now since I don’t have concrete proof and come back when i do. […]

  7. Macalua.com December 11, 2005 at 11:45 PM

    Webrings and SEO

    I’ve been looking for a SEO article on webrings forever. Jim Boykin has started one but it doesn’t really dive to0 much into the relationship between webrings and SEO.

    This linkfarming method from the Web’s triassic era continues to bear fruit e…

  8. Aaron Pratt December 17, 2005 at 12:55 AM

    webrings = blogs

    no need for webrings, notice how us bloggers follow each other and link to each other naturally? 😉

  9. Web10 Blog » Blog Archive » 10 Internet Marketing Methods April 29, 2006 at 5:48 PM

    […] Webrings are a collection of websites that are based around particular themes. Find a webring that relates to the topic of your site and join. This will bring you a reasonable amount of traffic if you join the right webring. Always check the terms of membership for any webring you are considering to be sure that you will gain the exposure you are looking for.  Also filter out webring that contain spammy sites as you don’t want your website associated with that, either in the eyes of your viewers or of the search engines.  Although long out of fashion, even experts now are recommending webrings. […]

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