Content Farmers had some strife, E-I-E-I-O

Posted on March 7, 2011


Google has refined its search algorithms to penalise “content farms” in a move that will alert everyone in search engine optimisation (SEO) careers.

The biggest search engine in the world has taken the step to ensure that its results filter out “shallow” material, thus proving more useful for its user base. Web sites that have original content, detailed research and reports as well as in-depth analysis will find more favour when it comes to being ranked in the site’s search engine results pages.

To start, the changes will only affect searches made in America. However, they will soon filter down to the rest of the world. It’s not known exactly when this will happen, but SEO experts in Chester and beyond will be scrutinising America’s search results in an effort to divine what changes have been made.

Google estimates that around 12 per cent of all search queries will be affected by the change. Earlier this year, it came in for criticism for its search results being overrun from content farms, especially from news outlets complaining that their investment in original content was being swamped by copied material.

Demand Media, a content farm which is planning to float on the stock exchange later this year in a deal worth millions, stated that lots of its pages had been demoted due to the change, whilst some had found themselves higher up in the search rankings. A spokesman said:

“It’s impossible to speculate how these or any changes made by Google impact any online business in the long term – but at this point in time, we haven’t seen a material net impact.”

In a blog post, Google stated:

“It is important for high-quality sites to be rewarded, and that’s exactly what this change does.”

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