Google recently released more information on low quality content and the 2-month old Panda update now has become the focal point of many online discussions related to SEO and content creation. According to the post, Panda is just one of 500 updates that the search engine plans to roll out this year. Since it’s release, there have been more than a dozen additional updates to the algorithm.
The big takeaway is low quality content can hurt your site’s overall rankings, even if those pages aren’t related to your main keywords. This is really important because if you have published thin pages to try and target specific secondary keywords then you could be hurting your main keyword rankings. I’m sure this will only add to concerns among webmasters about finding problem pages and we could actually see good pages removed from sites out of fear.
Google included a 23 point checklist on what attributes defined a high quality page vs. a low quality page.
– Written by someone familiar with the topic
– Free of grammatical and spelling errors
– Based on original content and research
– Found on sites with authority within its field (citations as a ranking factor)
– Written for genuine reader interest instead of trying to rank for keywords
We’ve touched on some of these items in our Panda content post. I wouldn’t be surprised if demand for freelance English speaking writers and editors suddenly surges through the end of this year as sites work to rewrite the bulk of their content. While I think that the Panda update is a good step for users, it makes Google a de facto government regulator in terms of their ability to alter business practices and implement sweeping industry changes.
Fahrenheit Marketing is an Austin web design firm.