After the Google Panda update (sometimes referred to as the Farmer update), many people believe that article marketing is in the toilet. Today, I want to take another look at the update and see how it’s actually affecting this important aspect of link building.
Regular readers of this blog will recall that I wrote about the new update a while back and at the time I did an unscientific experiment to find out how eHow was fairing. My research showed that eHow was not much changed, though other, less well known content farms had been more severely affected by the changes in the algorithms.
One place I actually didn’t check on at all was Ezine articles, the granddaddy of the article marketing craze. However, it turns out that Ezine and other article directories were actually some of the biggest targets of the farmer update, with left a lot of articles on the dumping grounds of the SERPs.
They’ve Taken a Hit But They’re Not Out
The bad news first: Ezine articles and other article directories have definitely taken huge hits to their rankings. This has badly affected a number of people relied heavily on article marketing. The good news is that, like eHow, some articles went up while others went down with the new algorithm change.
Basically, unique, well written content is in, exactly as Google intended it to be. If you only syndicate your work to Ezine and a handful of other article directories, the odds are good that the content will be picked up and will help your rankings, as long as it’s unique and not junk.
Also, I think the algorithms are using some kind of AI to spot obviously spun articles. Therefore, you do need to be careful about the spun material you put up and make sure it actually is human readable, even if it’s not the most elegant looking English around.
One of the common jokes I see on a number of Internet marketing forums is that if you really want a fast way to spin an article, you should just run in through Google translate. Translate the article from English to say Cantonese and then translate back to English again. It will come out as gobbledygook.
This kind of material is largely being punished in the SERPs with the Panda update. Now while that material is not necessarily intended to be read anyway, if it goes too far down in the SERPs then the link juice becomes pretty useless as well.
How to Still Do Article Marketing
Google is all about quality content. Try syndicating only to a handful of article directories instead of hundreds of them and you’ll likely see your articles provide you more value than if you had tried to blast hundreds of worthless directories no one has ever heard of anyway. This also means you can cherry pick the least objectionable spun versions of articles to put into those directories or you can even write original material for each one.