If you share links with other websites that are related to your own, it can generate good quality web traffic – even conversions.
Developing web traffic away from Google search bolsters how Google views your website, on the basis you are using legitimate efforts.
For example, say you have a website about interior design and you share a link with a local architect. It’s very likely anyone viewing the architects site is going to be interested in interior design.
On the other hand, you might consider adding your website to a huge online directory that just seems to list page after page of links.
Clearly – the best link is that placed on the architects website. It should generate some good quality traffic for you and shows Google you are not completely reliant on them.