“ACT NOW AND WE’LL SEND YOU A FREE <Insert product here>”
“ONLY I CAN HELP YOU ACHIEVE <Insert service here>”
“THIS WILL CHANGE THE WAY YOU <Insert personal aspect here>”
We’ve all visited some of these kinds of sites and pages at some point in our internet lives.
What’s funny about many of them is just how bad the sites truly are. What’s sad about them is that they still work on a limited scale. Most of these sites are running some kind of MLM (Multi-Level-Marketing) system.
These are the “IN YOUR FACE” sites/pages, think of SHAMWOW for the internet. Somehow you end up on one even if you weren’t trying. They’re like gapers block; no matter how ugly the scene, people slow down and look.
So why do they still work even on a limited scale? They work the “numbers.” There is a dirty little secret these kinds of sites and companies use that drives a HUGE amount of traffic to them. It’s a two step process but in the end we’re talking about thousands+ of hits per day.
The first step is that they use SEO like a hooker at a Shriner convention. It’s not enough for them to get into the top 10 of your search results; they want to be at the top in ALL search results, so they will use the system to make sure that happens. Often they will get data on what the hot topics are for that time period and adjust their keywords accordingly. This brings us to the second step.
The second step they use is redirects and “back linking” to get us there. How they do this is by creating a single page or a blog post that will eventually lead us to the intended site. They will use a core set of keywords and then add to them based on the “hot” searches for the time. These hot searches could be anything from a celebrity death/marriage (same thing really) to a descriptions of the latest viral video. All of this is done to mislead the user into landing on their page so they can sell you something.
But Google is on to them. Late in the Spring of 2012 Google announced some changes coming to their search algorithms. The changes focus on over optimized websites. Too many keywords, frequent updates to keywords or the lack of relevant content compared to the Meta data. In essence Google is trying to refine their search algorithms to be more insightful and help you weed out the spam. This is not something new either. Google has done this a couple of times over the years. Each time SEOs and Webmasters have had their concerns, and rightfully so. Why should they be penalized and have to change methods because of those that abuse the system? It isn’t fair but that’s life sometimes.
As time goes on they will adapt to the changes but so will the spammers. At some point Google will update their algorithms again and the cycle will start again. That’s just the nature of things. But we as users, webmasters, and small business owners can help. By creating content that is both compelling and relevant. If our sites are designed properly: appropriate Meta Tags and Keywords, relevant page content, Alt tags and the proper back linking. We can help Google weed out the bad from the good. It is in our best interest to do so.
Will these type of sites go away? Nope. But we can make things more difficult for them.