When a blogger wants to share a specific set of blogs that she likes most or wants to promote to readers of the blog, the blog owner often creates a list of links to those blogs in a sidebar. This list of links is what is known as a blogroll. Besides drawing attention to the blogger’s own site, the blogger might use the blogroll to promote the sites of friends, associates or organization related to the blogger’s own website.
Setting up, editing and controlling what links are included in a blog’s blogroll is up to the blog owner and is managed on the back end of the blog owner’s web page. However, there are some common blogroll rules of etiquette which many adhere to in the blogosphere. Though there are no written rules, most blogger’s whose link is added into the blogroll of another blog tend to reciprocate by adding the other blog’s link into their own blogroll. Of course, there are plenty of reasons why reciprocating might not be in your best interest, but it is considered good etiquette in the blogosphere to at least read and review the other blog and thank the blogger for adding you to their blogroll.
On the other side of blogroll etiquette, there is an unwritten rule when it comes to soliciting another blogger or asking them to add your blog onto their blogroll, even if you have added their blog to your blogroll.
The main purpose behind a blogroll is to help drive traffic to your blog. Blogs with a lot of incoming links move up in search engine ranking because they are being backlinked. The more backlinks from listings in other blogrolls your web site receives the greater popularity you have and the higher you will rank among search engines.
It is a good practice to keep your blogroll up-to-date by refreshing the links to the blogs in your blogroll on a regular basis. This doesn’t necessarily mean removing, replacing and shuffling in new blogs if you have some particular favorites, but it just helps facilitate easier surfing and is considered a common courtesy to extend to your readers.
A blogroll is a useful tool for associating yourself with other bloggers and providing additional resources to your own readers. It is also one means of advancing in search engine ranking when other bloggers reciprocate and you gain backlinks for your own website or blog.