The latest round of changes to Google’s ranking formula will have far reaching effects on the affiliate marketing and internet marketing world.
As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, Google released formula changes regarding duplicate content and how they handle it. Simply put, you don’t want to directly copy other people’s content any more or Google will give you “suboptimal” rankings.
For the past few years, quite a few “big names” worldwide have been selling software and methods of producing websites from other people’s content, especially that found in article directories such as EzineArticles. In other words, using duplicate content to build blogs and sites designed only to grab traffic from the search engines.
It wasn’t a process supported by experienced marketers who like to build long term, ongoing income producing sites. Why not? Because the search engines have always said that they like to show quality, original content in their results and business builders respect their number 1 source of ongoing leads.
What do the changes mean if you have been using duplicate content?
It remains to be seen but people are reporting a large drop in many of their rankings where they have used articles from article directories to form the basis of their sites. Not all sites are being affected but I would think that this will change as Google tracks the effectiveness of its formula and tweaks it even more.
These sites, let’s call them what they often are – website spam, have long been an annoying part of the internet landscape and in my opinion rank up there with directories and link farms in terms of their time wasting presence. They take up valuable space at the top of the SERPs that could be filled by a credible source, NOT someone just filling white space with advertising.
Google’s step is a positive one for us as dedicated affiliate marketers. It means that if we produce sites with quality content, we will be rewarded and the spammers will be kept out of our way. Will it stop the spam? For a while, but that’s normal and Google will keep watching. One thing’s for sure… they took way too long to implement this change. It should have happened at least two years ago.
Side effects of this change
If your pages have been used by someone else to produce content for their site, you may find your rankings suffering too. Some article writing software takes paragraphs from articles and websites and strings them together to make a “new” one. Some marketers have been using these tools to compile content for their sites, effectively stealing part of yours. If you notice a drop in traffic, do a search in Google for some of your text. In a worst case scenario, you may need to rewrite all your pages.
What about content spinning?
There are lots of rumors around regarding content spinning. I’m sure most of us have tried it at some stage. Spinning is done by using a tool to replace common words and phrases with synonyms. By doing this, you can effectively create a new-ish article. How new is the question? 10%, 30%, 60%?
The rumor mill is implying that Google can now tell if an article is spun. Whether it’s true or not, I believe that they could do it, if they wanted to.
It would be quite easy to write a formula that can reverse engineer a spin. Then it would only take a series of runs to determine if the article is spun. Think of if as breaking a substitution code. You know the one, when you write Z you actually mean A.
A B C D E F etc
Z Y X W V U
How do you avoid “suboptimized” ranking results?
Write your own content!
Almost 100% of the content on AssociatePrograms.com is original except where we have used quotes. Yes, other people have displayed our content on their sites but ours is indexed first and seen by the search engines as the first example thereby making ours the authority article. That means we keep our rankings and the copiers lose theirs, hopefully ☺
If you’re unsure how to write an article, try my favorite formula for article writing in this article from last year. It has been used by many people and has proved itself to be the quickest, easiest way to produce quality articles.
For long-term success with Google, the QUALITY of the words you write is becoming more and more important. Google is working hard at finding high-quality articles. So make sure you give Google what it wants.
People love original thoughts, opinions and ideas. You don’t have to be a perfect speller and you don’t have to have perfect grammar. You just have to write honestly and openly.
Readers are very forgiving if you have useful, interesting and informative content. And, in the end that’s what you want if you want then to buy an affiliate product you’re promoting.
So go back and review your site, check your stats and if you are seeing issues, today would be a great day to start rewriting, refreshing and improving your content.
What if you don't like writing articles?
By Allan Gardyne
Are you sick and tired of writing your own articles? Or perhaps you just want to save time so you can concentrate on the parts of your business you enjoy?
A really good, reliable alternative is to use a trusted writing service. What you want is a service that has trained freelance writers who create REAL articles – unique, targeted, search engine optimized articles. And you want them to write articles for you based on the keywords you provide, for a very reasonable price.
Content Kingdom writers do exactly that. They write original, unique articles for you.
Some affiliates use articles from Content Kingdom's writers without changing a word. It's up to you, but I recommend you tweak them a little, adding your own voice and personality, and now and again a few words based on your own experience.
Read the testimonials, then try a few articles and see what you think.