For some this is old news and for others it will be the first time you have heard about it.
If you haven’t heard, Google recently changed its search algorithm.
In very simple terms, Google has decided to ‘penalize’ the websites / blogs that copy other people’s content.
I recently found a top-performing site that was copying my content (and many other peoples content) and it was ranking very high in the search engines.
Google have put their foot down and said ‘no more’. They are no longer tolerating such activity.
The roll out of the new Google algorithm started back in late February and will continue to do so across the world over the next few weeks/months.
Google state they expect that 12% of websites / blogs will be impacted.
I’m not sure if they mean 12% will be impacted in a negative way or the 12% also includes those who gain from the new change.
You see…I’ve been looking at my visitor stats and I believe my site has been impacted in a POSITIVE way.
If the positive impact is not due to the algorithm change then it is a big coincidence!
Since the Google algorithm has been updated I’ve experienced an 18.74% increase in the number of visitors to my site. That 18.74% increase is in comparison to the number of visitors I had in the month before leading up to the algorithm change.
And when comparing the stats where visitors come to my site direct from a Google search the number has increased by 30.15%. That means 30% more people are now finding my site via the Google search engine.
Is that because all the ‘bad boy’ sites that copy content have fallen down the search engine rankings and mine has gone up?
I like to think so and for me, it is too much of a coincidence.
Why has WeBuildYourBlog benefited from the algorithm change?
I think this because of a number of reasons.
1. Unique Content
95% to 99% of the content on this blog is unique i.e. it is not published anywhere else. If any of the content has been published elsewhere through people copying my content… Google knows that the original post was published here first.
So reason (or rule) number one or perhaps we should say guide number one is only publish unique content on your blog.
2. Type of Content
I believe Google is putting more and more emphasis on the type of content you are publishing on your blog. And what I mean by content are things like text, images and videos.
If you are just going to use text-based content then I would always recommend you add at least one image to the post.
But even better…
Start adding your own videos as well. And I don’t mean videos from YouTube… I mean add videos hosted on your own host account.
You may have seen in my recent “speeding up your blog expert series”, all of the posts were video-based. I did that for two reasons. One because it was easier to share and show you what I have actually done to speed up the blog and two, I wanted to see if using video made any impact on my search rankings.
Some of my videos in that “Improve Your Blog Speed Series” are in position one for certain keyword phrases.
When adding video to your blog you also need to have a plug-in that creates a video site map as the Google XML site map can only read text-based publications.
I recently invested in a video site map plugin. The video site map tells Google that you have videos on your blog and it will add the video type blog posts to the search engines.
Here is the link to the plugin: Video Site Map Plugin
So reason number 2 – mix up your content. Use text, images and videos.
3. Back links
Some will say the more back links you have the better.
Others will say only get back links from high quality sites.
No one really knows the true answer however my belief is that you should get a mixture of back links from a variety of sources.
I have over 65,000 back links to this blog coming from a huge variety of sources including article directories, forums, guest posts, RSS directories, comments and so on.
When creating back links it is important not to just back link to your main domain i.e. your homepage. You want to also back link to internal pages and individual blog posts.
You want to let Google know that your entire site is worth linking to, not just the homepage.
Check out my popular blog post, How to get backlinks.
So reason number 3 – build backlinks from a variety of sources. Check out the link above to see how you can drastically improve the number of backlinks you have.
4. Internal Linking
This sentence is directly from the Google site:
“The number of internal links pointing to a page is a signal to search engines about the relative importance of that page.”
Which means you should link from one blog post to another where and when relevant.
See my short video on how to do this using a free plugin:
In summary and you’ve heard it time and time again and you can hear it again right now…
It all boils down to publishing unique original quality content that people want to read /view and providing your blog with as many internal links and back-links from a variety of sources.
If you think there’s a cheats way of getting more visitors more traffic to your blog by copying other people’s content then you are mistaken.
Have you experienced any changes in your stats as a result of the Google algorithm change?
Please share your views in the comments below.
I didn’t know they changed their algorithm. Thanks for sharing this news. My blog has been copied too. I hope I’ll see some positive effects.
Do some stats comparisons and see if you have.
i use to copy contents but now i stopped. should i remove the previous copied contents or not ?
I wouldn’t remove them…just from now on…only publish unique content.
You have a excellent point. I think my blog has been affected in a good way. My search engine traffic is starting to increase and I have even really been writing for them. I’m going to actually start doing a better job of targeting certain keywords and see where that takes me!
Great news! Glad you are benefiting as well.
Great Post! This is right on the money! Google is always changing up their algorithm that sooner or later, people who are practicing black hat methods are not going to be able to rank anymore, and the sites that actually put in the work are going to be on top.
Let’s hope so!
I’m not surprised you are being rewarded with more traffic. You teach honest ways to grow traffic and always use unique content and so Google sees this and it equals more traffic and no penalties when they change things 🙂
People try shortctus and “black hat” techniques then complain when they are penalised! I’ll keep writing unique content and doing things the way I have been taught by my blogging coach.
Patricia Perth Australia
Hard works does pay off and I always tell my clients it does take hard work!
It is just getting through those first few months. Do that and there is no turning back.
Dear Andrew –
I thought I was getting smarter and all the time, it was Google.
My stats in the past month also up about 17%.
Maybe I will go back now to do some article marketing. I was sick of my content constantly being scraped with no credit.
Thanks for this outstanding post.
Excellent! The good guys win in the end.
Well I am glad this update worked for you Andrew, but there were legit websites that got punished although they were playing fair and didn’t copied or published content that was also published on other website.
And the fact is that I still can see website that rank higher then stackoverflow with their own content, and I think because of someone reporting this very thing is why Google started to implement this update, yet it was infective while also affective legit websites.
I didn’t realize it affected legit websites as well…in a negative way.
Sounds like Google will be doing some tweaking.
Hey there Andrew, Thanks again for the update. This is good news. Good to hear that your site has benefited from this change in Google ranking systems. Also your blog can be a case study to show readers who you need to blog to get better visitor count and business.
That would be a great target…my blog being a case study!
I haven’t seen a positive effect but that would be great if it did happen. I have noticed the article directories are cracking down on bad content and poor writers.
Some of the Article Directories have been badly impacted by this recent change.
Question for you Andrew. When you say ” And I don’t mean videos from YouTube… I mean add videos hosted on your own host account.” What exactly do you mean.
I’ve recently started a video series, and I’m uploading to Youtube and then using their embed code to put on my blog. It’s my video, but I’m pulling it from my YouTube channel. Do you recommend against this? I thought the blog views would help my YouTube stats as well…
Initially I was using Vimeo but didn’t want to wait for the upload, which can be over a day wait at times (and didn’t want to pay for an upgrade). Then started using Screencast, but I get this odd dop down menu that covers the video.
..thoughts? What are you recommending?
If you want the video to appear in the search engines and when clicked on…they will come to your site…you need to put the videos on your own hosting account and use a plugin like I mention in the post.
If you don’t mind ‘searchers’ going over to YouTube to view your videos then just embed them onto your site…but remember YouTube will get most of the visits via the search engines.
Does that make sense?
i have to tend to agree with you my search trafic form google has gone up just the last few mounths inever copy content i allways do orignal thats the only way to build a blog
Excellent! Sounds like the hard work is paying off.
I decided to begin publishing my own articles to my blog. I have over 100 articles elsewhere in the blogsphere, great content, but not on my own home blog. I would re-post some of my articles on my blog with an attribution link to my original post–elsewhere. The decision to post my articles to my “own” home blog did not a reaction to the new algorithm changes, but I noticed that when it came time to write my own unique content, I was already burned out. Never understood SEO and Page Rank, etc. But it is great to know this information. As always Andrew, thanks for looking out!
I wouldn’t re-post them on your own blog from now on.
Just add unique quality content.
Good one google! It seems like a great change to make.
I don’t think my stats have been impact but my numbers are probably too low to notice much.
I think it is a great change. And I bet there is more to come.
Does this new algorithm mean that articles submitted to sites such as Technorati or Blogcritics, and then pubished on my own site will count as “copied?”
If so, it will make people think twice about submitting.
It would seem so, Ian.
You can still submit unique articles to those directories!
Your content has always been one of the most valued that I receive. Thanks so much for that info about internal linking. I would put that to use right away.
I also noticed that you have additional posts and/or pages at the bottom that begin with:
“Readers who viewed this post, also viewed:”
Is that also a wordpress plugin?
I would love to implement that for the same reasons you mentioned about the insights plugin… provided of course, that it would not be too expensive.
Looking forward to your response.
Thanks for your help.
Thanks for the kind words.
It is the ‘Where go from here’ plugin:
A free one!
I am very glad to see these changes. These auto blogs that strip content from others blogs was being a real pain for many of us. We as bloggers work hard to write quality posts. Some of my posts take over a day to write and hours if not days of research. Just to have someone come by and strip the content and rank higher then me for it was a real downer. Glad to see the changes and I am off to check out your backlinking post. (Internal linking at its best)
Google are beginning to reward those who do work hard and put the effort in.
This is my business and am therefore in it for the long-term…not just a short-term quick buck.
As to this article Google is penalizing more then people who copy other peoples content as they will penalize sites that have slow click rates, sites that have traffic that do not stay for a long period of time,poor content even if it is your own,sites that bounce.
So it looks like it will be very hard to please google from now on as they are making it harder and harder to get ranked to a good position.
Kenneth c Young
Bring it on…I say.
When I go to a site that has great content, fast response…I stay for a while and keep going back.
That is how it should be.
Personally I have no idea, I only just started checking stats. You have done quite well though my friend, and no, I don’t think that’s coincidental. lol
I thought you were a StatCounter expert!
When I first installed it, eons ago. I should have said “restarted” checking stats.
I really didn’t have any idea that Google has changed their search algorithm. Based on how you explained their new and improved algorithm, I believe this is good news for many of us who write only original content. Too bad for people who simply use plagiarized content for their own website, they had it coming. Besides, it’s simply not right to benefit from other people’s hard work.
I agree with everything you say, Felicia.
I’m looking forward to see what Google do next!
Great news about google’s new algorithm. It was a bit irritating to see all these low quality websites stealing other people’s work high up in the searches. Now, the original writers will get awarded.
I wonder one thing about the original content. I used to write tennis fitness articles for Examiner.com. I published the original article there, and then in my personal blog/site I published the first paragraph (as an intro) and to read more I linked it to Examiner (because we got paid per click there, so I was driving traffic there). Now I am realizing that maybe it is hurting my personal blog, because it doesn’t have “original” content? Or maybe it’s too little content because it’s just the first paragraph and the picture? I don’t write for Examiner anymore (it’s not worth it) so I will publish my original content on my site, but are all the 150 old articles going to hurt me?
Thanks for great blog, I am going to read more!
I would keep your summary posts live. People come to your site to learn and gain knowledge.
You want to have as much content as you can.
Just from now on…use your approach of adding original content to your site only.
Good post on understanding the google’s algorithm. Bloggers who put in great effort, time and energy are now going to be rewarded for their hard work. This post gives a clear picture of how google’s new algorithm works and how to improve my blog’s rank and traffic. Thanks for sharing this valuable post.
Unfortunately there are still to many who believe you can make money via blogging…with little effort!
Yes, we all need to follow the update from Google especially about Search Engine Algorithm so we can always play by the rule 😉
Another Great and Useful story Andrew, thanks.
I’ve had a negative reaction despite the fact that I have written every single post. As much as this hurts, in the long run, I’m for it.
Really! What has been the negative reaction?
My sites don’t seem to be affected any, which is a good thing. The four points you hit on are definitely the keys to keeping a solid ranking. Awesome tips as always, Andrew.
That’s great news, Alan.
I’m still getting a high percentage of visitors direct from Google.
Those are the best kinds of visitors. 😉
Referring to your unique content idea.
Recently, I’ve found an idea that marketing concept can be easily get through via cartoon videos.
It works, and I’m getting better traffic now too
Do you host the videos yourself or via youtube?
And do you have a Google Video Sitemap?
Greetings from greece (:P)
I’ve got a question I’d like to ask… might sound a bit stupid but I’m still a newbie 🙂
After I post something on my blog, I usually copy half of it and post it all around on other forums or sites that allow me to (I say half of it because my goal is that they’ll come to my original blog the read the rest of it).
So I start wondering, will I (in any way) be “penalized” from google because the same article shows up on many sites/forums? Of course in the post I include a backlink to my site… does that in any way help?
Thanks in advance,
The backlink will help but why half of it. Why not just a 1 or 2 sentence summary that entices people to click on the link and read the rest on your blog.
Yes, but this really stinks if your original content has been copied and placed on truckloads of blogs/websites and you, the original author of the content gets penalized because Google has NO CLUE who the original author is or where the original content originated from. In my case I have been Google Panda slapped hard because other websites and blogs have copied my original content. The whole thing is a bloody nightmare! And what’s worse is my site has been around for 10 years, so there has been 10 years worth of copying.
I am NOT rejoicing.
Sorry to hear your troubles.
I was in a similar position for one of my blogs. A site was copying all my blog posts. I got the site shut down.
Here’s my story:
Hi, I have a question. What will google behave if I copy content from other source but I put back link to it!? I can change the beginning of the post and the end of it and maybe pictures. Will it be good for google or I have to wright only unique content? Please answer.
It’s best if you write unique content.
If you copy other peoples, that’s stealing and you will be panalized. Just don’t do it!
Great post! You really answered my question about building back links to my site now after the change. I am on the first page for a good amount of keywords in my niche and one day my site complete dropped out of the search engines.
I could not believe what just happened. All my content is 100% unique and did very minimal back linking. So I decided to wait to see what would happen, which was about 2 months. It got to the point where I was about to say heck with it then start focusing on something else.
Well then I figured I could create other content using high authority sites to rank on page number and drive traffic to my site. Sounds good to me. So last week when I was gathering resources for my new content I checked my analytics and all of a sudden I was starting to see some visitors. I type in the keywords that I was ranking for and what do you know #1 position for most of them.
I then checked the keywords that I wasn’t ranking for – about the 12 page and up with no back links – now rank between 1-5 pages.
With very little back linking my site continues to rise for keywords.Looks like my hard work is paying off.
That’s sounds like great news.
Lucky you never gave up…many would’ve.
I am new to blogging. I started with a blogger blog and posted 3 posts with unique content which is written by me only. I submitted the blog url to search engines, digg and twitter. But still now I didn’t get even one visit. With your step Backlinks, now I am going to start posting comments on other sites. Hope this would be helpful to me to get start traffic.
It takes time to get visitors.
How many Twitter followers do you have? And Digg?
You should get some visitors after you post approx 10 blog posts.
I really upset me seeing my contents (hard work) being copied and published on other sites without my permission, and worst still, they make no reference and still rank higher than the original owner.
In recent time I argued about it in a facebook group and some guys said nothing is wrong with that… Well, I hate such act. Azubuike @ Latest Technology News