Decorative Concrete and the fading Art of Article Spinning
Writing about web page http://www.dekorbeton.com/
One of our first CCM website reports was delivered too late! A small plastics business in Hednesford had handed their website over, with £100 per month, to get to page 1 on Google.
Their website was PageRanked 4/10, the same as Bentley Motors, because they were in the Open Directory Project’s DMOZ directory. By the time our report was sent the website had been removed from Google’s index because of the illegal techniques used by their so-called ‘SEO experts’. The same techniques also took bmw.de off the air, for days.
So CCM was always careful to recommend giving Google what they wanted, relevant content and links from pages about related topics. This is also what we want, the best results for our queries. The tactics moved on through link-swapping, link-farms etc and people continued to try to game Google and sell these services.
More recently many of my clients are asking about article publication services they’ve been pitched and I’ve heard a top UK ‘Internet Marketing Expert’ promote ‘article spinning’. So I decided to gather some real data.
One of my clients, decorative concrete specialists, Dekorbeton, supply textured concrete stamping & overlay products. Based in Istanbul they hired English experts to keep their English language site content accurate with the correct navigation and tags etc. Their web experts also offered to create and publish featured links and specialist articles as an additional service. This lined up with a number of the carefully crafted services that I had seen offered.
The ‘internet marketing expert’, above, recommended a few good high quality links and loads of poor ones, the more the merrier.
When I investigated the in-links to www.dekorbeton.com I found this pattern, see the Market Samurai report summary, right. I drilled down to find their article content in sites such as EzineArticles and Articles3000. I followed 8 such sites providing 170 links, all from the 0/10 column. Now Google don’t provide comprehensive in-link data so I use Yahoo’s excellent SiteExplorer. Market Samurai’s tool does too then merging Google’s Pagerank data. So not every PR 0 link is in the Google index. I sampled 52 of the 170 article links to find that only 17 were indexed by Google! So 2/3 of these articles were a complete waste of time. (Based on 82% of Dekorbeton traffic coming from Google. Google’s search engine share was over 93%.)
Some of the articles were very relevent on patios etc. and of good quality. Most used keywords in the link text such as ‘brick wall overlay but often these were down in the author’s details. Many were on vaguely related topics such as soft furnishings and hydroponics. I am grateful to the director at Dekorbeton giving permission to use their data. I also confirmed that her own efforts in adding comments and answers on blogs, forums and other Web2.0 sites had a far greater impact. This also was a good excuse to add some images from their site to break up this long post.
I cannot make the case against article-spinning based on just one example so I checked out the links to the site of the ‘internet marketing expert’. Position 1 for very competitive keywords, he was doing many things right. The pattern of links was as he recommended and similar to the pattern in the panel above. His articles, too, were rarely in the Google index. I have found clear evidence that article-spinning did work in the past but, like many other SEO tactics, its day has gone.