Spam content can really ruin the search experience of users looking for information about a particular subject on the Internet. In February 2011, Google announced that they had re-tuned their search algorithm to purge their search engine of approximately 12 percent ‘low quality’ websites. These websites usually consist of fraud websites masquerading as official brands, as well as content farms. Such sites are known to use various digital marketing techniques to climb up the search engine rankings, and push down more deserving websites.
In January 2010, some digital marketing research agencies had reported that around 28 percent of paid-for search terms were being used by ‘brandjackers’. Like the name suggests, a ‘brandjacker’ is a person or company that assumes the identity of an online business, to make profits out of that company’s brand equity. Another tactic used by low quality websites looking for increased page views is ‘squatting’. This process involves the creation of fake websites with names that are similar to well-known brands, to trap unsuspecting users into visiting and interacting with them.
Most digital marketing experts expect that Google’s recent modification to their search algorithm would result in a decrease in the number of irrelevant websites that show up in searches for popular keywords. Such ‘low quality’ websites are expected to be penalised by Google, while websites with ‘high quality’ content are predicted to climb up the search rankings very quickly. In such a situation, it is important for digital marketing professionals to ensure that the textual content displayed on the landing pages they promote are of a reasonably high standard.
According to Matt Cutts, principal engineer at Google, it took only a few days for Google to make this change in the United States. Many digital marketing experts expect Google to roll-out these changes to countries in other geographic locations over the next few months. This change is expected to benefit websites with good quality original content, such as reports, analyses, studies and so on.
Google has also created a feature in their Chrome browser that enables users to block websites with content that they find unappealing. According to Google, this feature blocks about 84 percent of annoying websites, which means that it can benefit searchers immensely. While this would have no effect on digital marketing companies that have good quality content on their landing pages, it is expected to have a negative effect on the profits made by ‘brandjackers’ through digital marketing advertisements.
To summarise, if digital marketing companies want to drive higher revenues to their client, it is important to focus on creating unique content, so that they are not penalised by search engines.
Qudos Digital is a leading digital marketing agency, and can be contacted on 0845 388 5583 or firstname.lastname@example.org.