To paraphrase Mark Twain and Captain Picard of the Enterprise, rumors of the death of Ezine articles have been greatly exaggerated. Okay, well maybe the word greatly is a bit of a reach here, but the fact is that I do believe that Ezine articles is still relevant to SEO. Here’s why:
Think about What Google Really Wants
Google’s Panda update was about getting the junk out of their search results. This meant getting rid of the crap that content farms put out there so that they can rank for any and every keyword while at the same time trying to make sure the truly useful content would rise to the top of the rankings.
Now this doesn’t necessarily mean that content farms are bad – it just means they need to change and provide genuinely useful, quality content rather than providing junk which just grabs keyword rankings.
It Forced Ezine to Tweak Their Rules
In essence, this recent update has forced Ezine Articles and anyone else for that matter who wants to actually remain relevant in a post Panda world to tweak their content and their rules so that they have content which is worthy of getting into the SERPs to begin with.
While Ezine definitely took a huge hit in the SERPs after the Panda update, I do believe that they are working to improve the quality of their material, deleting junk which has no value and insisting on a higher standard of content for their service than what they used to require (though to be fair, they always had a higher standard than some other article directories).
Think about the Original Purpose of Ezine Articles
The other thing to consider is the original purpose of Ezine Articles. It’s right there in the name. The original reason that Ezine was created wasn’t to directly rank in the SERPs but to provide you with direct links from other blogs and or Ezines.
Now while the links from blogs may not be particularly useful given that you’ll get hit with the duplicate content penalty, the Ezines can prove useful, if not from an SEO standpoint then at least from the point of view of simply driving additional traffic to your website, which is after all the reason that you put content onto Ezine Articles to begin with.
They’re Big Enough to Weather the Storm
I do believe that we’ll see an increasing failure rate amongst article directories (the newer ones and the ones that aren’t well known and or don’t have strong standards were already failing at an alarming rate even before Panda).
That’s because making money from an article directory is hard and you either end up with a lot of junky spam or you end up with a massive job of sifting through all the articles and trying to find the handful of good ones. Ezine Articles however, because they are the granddaddy of the article directory world, should be able to invest enough to bounce back and rebuild their rankings over time.
No, I don’t think Ezine Articles is dead for the long term. However, I do think you need to find other backlink strategies and not rely just on them or even mostly on them for the near to mid future.