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Wholinked.com - A Website Credibility Builder?
Ed Kohler
Attention: There is a chance to win money at the end of this post.

Wholinked.com is a new service that publishes a list of sites that link to your site on your site. It's designed to be an easy to add credibility builder that shows off who's found your site's content link-worth - as in, who linked to you. Too see WhoLinked in action, take a glance at the right column of Technology Evangelist's homepage you'll probably see something like this:

wholinked2.gif

According to Wholinked, a crazy marketing cartoonist, a billionaire NBA team owner from Texas, the #1 user-contributed encyclopedia, a 21 year old in India, and our good friend Derek Franklin have linked to Technology Evangelist. So, what does that prove? Well, I'm not entirely sure. According to WhoLinked.com's FAQ, this is what it achieves:

By showing that other important sites are linking to yours, you prove to your visitors that you're for real. It's a fast, easy way to convey how important your site is.

Well, did it prove this site is important? Let us know in the comments.

Real World Experience

I installed WhoLinked on Technology Evangelist around two weeks ago. What have I learned so far? I haven't determined what effect it has on credibility, although our RSS subscriber base seems to be growing a bit faster than usual. More importantly, it has generated a measurable bump in traffic from sites you link to who have WhoLinked.com installed on their site, including WhoLinked.com, where we're currently displayed in their #1 WhoLinked position after linking to them back on April 20th:

wholinked1.gif

What's the Catch?

Clicking on the "WHAT'S THIS?" link at the bottom of the report reveals an ad served by WhoLinked. Currently, it looks like their serving a link to Ebay, but that could change at any time. It's unobtrusive, so not a major negative. You do share some web stats with WhoLinked since they could track how many times their script is served on your site. If you're protective of that sort of this, this script probably isn't for you.

Marketing Application


Should you seek out sites publishing their WhoLinked stats, then link to them to gain a backlink? Why not, right? Keep in mind that appearing in a WhoLinked report won't improve your PageRank or search engine rankings since it uses JavaScript. But click throughs are nothing to shake a stick at.

Let's Have Some Fun

I published our current WhoLinked stats above. If you can bump any of the current sites off the list in the next 30 days, I'll send you $50* (or $50 to the charity of you choice). Wait! Let's make it easier. I've increased our wholinked.com report from 5 to 10 sites, so there is as much as $500 on the line (yeah, it's not a ton of cash, but really, could it be any easier to win?):

wholinked3.gif

If you manage to move into the top-10 by June 10th, you're in the money. Sites currently on the list are not eligible. I have to have some rules, right?

How to enter: Link to www.technologyevangelist.com It's that easy. How to win? According to WhoLinked.com's FAQ, here is how they determine rankings:

We show the highest-quality links first, as determined by the search engines. This includes Google?Ǭ PageRank. If you have more links than there is room for, they won't show up.

So link away. Give it your best shot. Link from as many sites as you can. It doesn't hurt to try, and it's easy money if you win. By the way, your site doesn't have to be a blog to be eligible. Any old website will do.

Bonus: I'm interested in finding out if WhoLinked.com's system can be gamed by a creative marketer. If you can somehow sweep our WhoLinked.com top-10, there's $1000 in this for you. Good luck!

*We don't want to break any laws so we'll figure out how to do legal awards at the end of the contest. Post questions to the comments, or send me an email to the address listed on my profile page.



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