Google’s Thoughts on Article Marketing and More

Speaker – Matt Cutts, Head of Google’s Webspam team

Transcription – Nu Studio’s SEO team

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Matt, from Mountainview asks, ‘What is Google’s current thinking about getting links from article marketing, widgets, footers, themes, etc.?’

I am really glad to talk about our current thinking, which is about the same as our past thinking, but let us be a little more explicit about it. Whenever you get a link from just a WordPress footer or a random footer, or when someone installs a widget, or they install some theme on their content management system, it is often the case that they are not editorially choosing to link with that anchor text. You sometimes see a lot of links, all with the exact same anchor text, because that is what the widget happened to have embedded in it or something like that. Even if it is not the exact same anchor text, it is relatively inorganic, in a sense that the person who made the widget is deciding what the anchor text should be, rather than the person who is actually doing the link, by including the widget.

It is the same thing with article marketing. If you write a relatively low article, just a few hundred words, and then at the bottom is two or three links of specifically high-keyword density anchor texts, then the a guy who just wants some content and does not really care about the quality might grab that article from an article bank or something, and he is not really editorially choosing to give that anchor text. As opposed to something is that really compelling, when you really like something or you are linking to it, organically, that is the links that we really want to count more.

It has always been the case that these links that are almost like boiler plate; it is not really a person’s choice to really endorse with that particular link or that particular anchor text. Those are links that we would typically not want to count as much. Our algorithms, or we, do have manual ways of saying, ‘At a very granular level, this is the sort of link that we do not want to trust.’

There are some people who say, ‘I just want links. I am just going to take shortcuts. I am lazy and I want to do the bare minimum I can to get the links that I want to get.’ They will fall back on some ways where . . . I have mentioned the example before, but if you’re a K-12 schoolteacher in Pennsylvania, and you are trying to get a web counter, you do not realize that it has ‘mesothelioma’ hidden the text of the web counter, that is not a link that we necessarily want to trust, at all, let alone give that much weight to.

The links where people are really choosing to editorially link to you, and not just because they are paid but because they think your site is good, those are the links that we are more likely to want to count more.

Image: Flickr