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  1. #1
    Full Member OICUAM2's Avatar
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    Article Marketing Gets Slapped
    In a recent Google update, content farms lost many of their top rankings.

    Google Algorithm Update Helps (Not Hurts) eHow | WebProNews

    Many of the sites that lost rankings were article marketing sites including ezinearticles, suite101, etc...

    PRnewswire also lost some of their keyword rankings.

    This is another lesson that what works on Google might not always work.

    I often argued that we should be building content on our own sites instead of building content on someone else's site. Of course, many of us did it because it brought some traffic and links, but it seemed obvious that this was the biggest strategy webmasters were using to game the search engines. Google wasn't going to let this strategy last forever becasue it brought mainly near duplicate content to the web and content farms that were low on quality and high on advertisements.

    Bottom line: Stop using article marketing as a marketing strategy. You will just be building content on sites that are no longer respected by Google.
    Last edited by OICUAM2; February 27th, 2011 at 04:23 PM.
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  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador kaizen's Avatar
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    It was a useful strategy that got abused by too many. EZinearticles and others bear a lot of the responsibility for having such low standards.

    Perhaps this is a foolish question, but did Article Aggregators get slapped across the board... or did they primarily take a hit on the spammiest articles or the niches that tend to attract abusers?

  3. #3
    Full Member OICUAM2's Avatar
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    The article linked above has a breakdown of what percentage of keyword rankings got removed from the SERPs. For most of the article sites, over 80% of their content got slapped. Ouch.
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  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador kaizen's Avatar
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    80% (at least) of the content on article sites is poorly written and/or spun crap anyways. Personally, I don't have a problem with people trying to get backlinks by such means, so long as they are submitting quality articles. I was just wondering if the crap articles were primarily the ones that got dumped.

    I always get hopeful that Google will get it right.

  5. #5
    Full Member bobby131313's Avatar
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    I'll tell you what, that fixya site was a royal freakin' pain in the ass. Every single time I try to look up something to do around the house they dominated the first page with nothing but absolute crap. Last time was tuning up my furnace.

  6. #6
    Affiliate Manager affilorama's Avatar
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    I believe that you could still rank well if you have submitted quality content to these sites and get traffic through them.
    Michelle
    Affilorama Group Ltd
    Affiliate Marketing by Affilorama | Free SEO Software by Traffic Travis

  7. #7
    ABW Ambassador writerguy's Avatar
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    Interesting take on this at the EzineArticles.com blog by their CEO, Christopher Knight. He insists the primary benefit authors get from articles they publish should not be "link juice," but rather traffic.

    Of course, he suggested policy changes coming at EZA, too. One thing they were considering was to make all the resource box links NOFOLLOW, as they currently do with links within the article body. That got quite a few panicky, even angry, responses. So for now, they are going to leave the resource box links DOFOLLOW.

    Oh, while we're on that subject: I submit only quality stuff to EZA, and when I search there, I find a significant amount of pretty fair quality stuff. It's my opinion that lumping EZA with a lot of run-of-the-mill content farm article directories is a bit harsh on EZA.

    Gary
    Generate more fake news.

  8. #8
    More Cheesier Than Ever Cheesehead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by writerguy View Post
    Interesting take on this at the EzineArticles.com blog by their CEO, Christopher Knight. He insists the primary benefit authors get from articles they publish should not be "link juice," but rather traffic.

    Of course, he suggested policy changes coming at EZA, too. One thing they were considering was to make all the resource box links NOFOLLOW, as they currently do with links within the article body. That got quite a few panicky, even angry, responses. So for now, they are going to leave the resource box links DOFOLLOW.

    Oh, while we're on that subject: I submit only quality stuff to EZA, and when I search there, I find a significant amount of pretty fair quality stuff. It's my opinion that lumping EZA with a lot of run-of-the-mill content farm article directories is a bit harsh on EZA.

    Gary
    Yes, EZA is fairly good. I have written for them. Probably the best of any. Still, how often would you go there to get information on a topic?
    This World is Not My Home
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  9. #9
    Beachy Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheesehead View Post
    Yes, EZA is fairly good. I have written for them. Probably the best of any. Still, how often would you go there to get information on a topic?
    Never! Even though they occasionally show up on a SERP for a topic I am researching. I never click there because the articles are not vetted - meaning there is no way to trust the accuracy. Wikipedia is not a perfect source, but at least there are "eyes" making corrections and/or noting where citations are needed for veracity.

    I had tried "using" some of their content a few years back and even abandoned that. It was difficult to find something well-written that also seemed accurate. I still have a few old sites where they exist -but we will be rebuilding/replacing all of them this year.
    Bill / Marketing Blog @ 12PM - Current project: Resurrecting my "baby" at South Baltimore..
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  10. #10
    Visual Artist & ABW Ambassador lostdeviant's Avatar
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    I got an email from ezine articles stating new quality guidelines. Now it will take longer (double) for all the quality checks to go through and minimum 400 word articles. I guess we should expect some new article rejections.
    They also stopped their wordpress plugin and API. I'm not sure what that has to do with quality though.
    Although somewhat off topic, I haven't submitted any articles to them for quite a while I'd rather write articles for revenue sharing sites. Why should they get all the benefit?

  11. #11
    Full Member OICUAM2's Avatar
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    We can look to past examples for how these article sites respond and recover - or realize they will never recover.

    A few years back, Squidoo was a great place to build pages and get some traffic. Then they got slapped and the rankings fell quickly. Seth Godin and his team put out all sorts of policy changes and new strategy memos, but the truth is that while Squidoo still gets some traffic for publishers, it has never recovered.
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  12. #12
    Full Member GoColts's Avatar
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    Email from EzineArticles:

    We are not stating anything new when we say that quality matters in your articles.

    It does.

    It always has.

    That's why we've made some tough decisions lately and instituted some changes that will impact you immediately. The end user-experience is important to us and should be to you. The value you provide in your articles matters since it's not only an investment in your future as a credible author, it’s an investment of time to your reader. Getting traffic today isn't worth the cost if your reader quickly realizes that you’re not in it to help them - that your intent was selfish - and they’re gone as quickly as they came.

    In an effort to help you succeed even more as an expert author in your niche, we’ll be moving forward with 5 changes that will be effective immediately. This is round one.

    Effective Immediately:

    1. Increased Quality Checks - We've doubled the review time per article that our Editors are allowed to focus on format, grammar, spelling, and consistency.

    2. WP Plugin and API – We will no longer be accepting article submissions via these tools.

    3. Deadlink /Link Diagnostic Center – If your article contained a dead link, we previously would unlink it within 35 days of your first notification and send you 5 notifications to encourage you to fix it. This process will change and if after 2 weeks your link has not been fixed, we will unlink it. You can always edit your article at a future time to update your link.

    4. Basic Plus Membership level – You were previously allotted 25 article submissions in this membership level if you did not meet the Platinum membership requirements at the end of your first 10 article submissions. This level was established to help you gain the additional experience and understanding to achieve the Platinum level (quality with quantity). What seemingly occurred was a vicious cycle of the continuous adding of 25 submissions if you still did not meet the requirements. This is no longer effective.

    The standard 25 now becomes 10. We’ve done this so that we can monitor your progress more efficiently and help coach you on what it will take to earn Platinum. It also weeds out those who fail to or unwilling to learn. If after those 10 additional submissions we feel that you are not gaining momentum, you will not be allotted any more submissions and we will no longer accept future article submissions from you. Your value in using our platform is to increase the effectiveness of your writing. While not always an easy feat for non-writers, we all need to learn.

    5. New Minimum 400 Word Count - We’ve been talking about this for a few years now and made the decision that effective immediately, we’ve increased the minimum word count to 400. While we know that we run the risk of frustrating a few experienced high quality authors who can write well in fewer words, we feel that it is the best choice to make. We have not discounted the fact that quality can come in 250-399 words and we are working on an idea that spawned four years ago (but never became live) where we’ll offer another membership level and reward those authors who define the high standards of quality. In fact, along with other amenities, this membership level will be hypersensitive to quality and NOT quantity. More on that will be discussed in the following weeks.

    For now, these are the changes that will immediately be going into effect. Watch this Blog in the coming days and weeks for more information.
    "God moves imperturbably, slowly, and with perfect organization. The only wise rate at which to live is God's rate. God get things done and they are done right and He does them without hurry. He neither fumes nor frets. He is peaceful and therefore efficient." - Norman Vincent Peale

  13. #13
    Prince of Content Vinny O'Hare's Avatar
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    Well the wordpress plugin was one of the dumbest idea in the history of the internet. First thing it did was a duplicate content penalty problem. It also polluted the site with garbage.

    Once again remember you don't control your content when you put it on other places that you don't own. I have an ezine account and I will still use it but no way I will ever put anything of value there.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoColts View Post
    Email from EzineArticles:

    We are not stating anything new when we say that quality matters in your articles.

    It does.

    It always has.

    That's why we've made some tough decisions lately and instituted some changes that will impact you immediately. The end user-experience is important to us and should be to you. The value you provide in your articles matters since it's not only an investment in your future as a credible author, it’s an investment of time to your reader. Getting traffic today isn't worth the cost if your reader quickly realizes that you’re not in it to help them - that your intent was selfish - and they’re gone as quickly as they came.

    In an effort to help you succeed even more as an expert author in your niche, we’ll be moving forward with 5 changes that will be effective immediately. This is round one.

    Effective Immediately:

    1. Increased Quality Checks - We've doubled the review time per article that our Editors are allowed to focus on format, grammar, spelling, and consistency.

    2. WP Plugin and API – We will no longer be accepting article submissions via these tools.

    3. Deadlink /Link Diagnostic Center – If your article contained a dead link, we previously would unlink it within 35 days of your first notification and send you 5 notifications to encourage you to fix it. This process will change and if after 2 weeks your link has not been fixed, we will unlink it. You can always edit your article at a future time to update your link.

    4. Basic Plus Membership level – You were previously allotted 25 article submissions in this membership level if you did not meet the Platinum membership requirements at the end of your first 10 article submissions. This level was established to help you gain the additional experience and understanding to achieve the Platinum level (quality with quantity). What seemingly occurred was a vicious cycle of the continuous adding of 25 submissions if you still did not meet the requirements. This is no longer effective.

    The standard 25 now becomes 10. We’ve done this so that we can monitor your progress more efficiently and help coach you on what it will take to earn Platinum. It also weeds out those who fail to or unwilling to learn. If after those 10 additional submissions we feel that you are not gaining momentum, you will not be allotted any more submissions and we will no longer accept future article submissions from you. Your value in using our platform is to increase the effectiveness of your writing. While not always an easy feat for non-writers, we all need to learn.

    5. New Minimum 400 Word Count - We’ve been talking about this for a few years now and made the decision that effective immediately, we’ve increased the minimum word count to 400. While we know that we run the risk of frustrating a few experienced high quality authors who can write well in fewer words, we feel that it is the best choice to make. We have not discounted the fact that quality can come in 250-399 words and we are working on an idea that spawned four years ago (but never became live) where we’ll offer another membership level and reward those authors who define the high standards of quality. In fact, along with other amenities, this membership level will be hypersensitive to quality and NOT quantity. More on that will be discussed in the following weeks.

    For now, these are the changes that will immediately be going into effect. Watch this Blog in the coming days and weeks for more information.
    They think they are holding writing competition? Too complicated system won't work.

  15. #15
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    I may be a little off track here (I am on vacation in the Caribbean so my thinking cap is not on tight) but one good thing here is that (I assume) Google is going after the content users too. I have had articles copied and submitted/approved to the same directory under different authors names, for many of my articles the resource box is no where to be seen on the publishers page. It's a mess - I would hope that the article directories also crack down on abuse by the people using the content.

    Edit: I just did some searching and checking and it looks like my article directory results are gone (or way down on page 3) now in Google - but they have been replaced by the same articles published on my pages! That's great - same result but much quicker approval process (I generally approve my articles faster than EZ )
    Last edited by CanadianDave; March 5th, 2011 at 08:17 AM.
    When the only tool you have is a hammer - everything looks like a nail.

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