Google recently instituted a change to it’s search algorithms — the change affects just under 12% of all search engine traffic and has been rolled out in the US only so far, with plans to go global.
Google’s intent is that searchers find more high quality content quicker when searching. Here’s an excerpt from their blog regarding the change:
“This update is designed to reduce rankings for low-quality sites—sites which are low-value add for users, copy content from other websites or sites that are just not very useful. At the same time, it will provide better rankings for high-quality sites—sites with original content and information such as research, in-depth reports, thoughtful analysis and so on.” (Read the full post about Google’s Algorithm’s change on their blog here.)
The impact on you?
If you use article marketing in your business, you should be aware that sites like Ezine Articles, GoArticles and others may have seen a substantial dip (or nosedive, as the case may be) in traffic from Google searches as they are no longer ranked as high as they once were. This may impact the amount of traffic (and revenue) your site receives.
Reduced traffic is certainly true for Ezine Articles, where CEO Chris Knight shared that site traffic was down 35% within 48 hours of Google’s change. Ezine Articles, a site I’ve used for years and highly recommend, is being proactive in addressing the lost traffic. You can see the actions Ezine Articles is taking to restore their place in the rankings here.
There are several benefits to what Google’s done:
- “Content farms” (online sites who take our articles, butcher them and put them on their own sites to gain AdSense revenue) will no longer have the rankings (you can read “revenue” here) to justify their time in doing this (it’s important to note that I do NOT consider Ezine Articles to be a content farm).
- Sites with high quality content will be rewarded. If you’re producing strong content for your industry/niche, it will be even easier for your ideal clients to find you organically when searching Google.
- Google will reward (through higher rankings) those sites with unique and consistent quality content. For years, I’ve said that “ordinary things, done consistently, will create extraordinary AND consistent results” — Google appears to agree.
So what should you do?
- Like with everything, don’t put all your eggs in one basket. If article marketing is the ONLY way you’re getting the word out about your business, it’s past time to include other avenues in your overall marketing and communications plan (my friend and client Carol Hess is offering a virtual retreat on creating a client-winning communications plan — check it out here).
- Focus on providing quality information relevant to your industry and niche.
- Engage your readers so that they become active participants in the content you share online.
I’d love to hear your thoughts about Google’s new changes and what you think it means for online-based businesses below.
Note: Members of my Get It Done Right program will receive the exact steps I’m taking in the March Behind The Curtain newsletter.