Low-quality content can hurt high-quality content and your ranking
Low-quality content, high-quality content, Panda, Penguin, algorithms, ranking- It’s not easy to make content appealing to search engines. We must consider many factors, including the ones mentioned above, before preparing content for websites because they can influence your search engine rankings and, sometimes, hurt your valuable stuff..
Ever since Google panda was unrolled, professionals working in SEO and content-related fields have had so much confusion about its working and impact on ranking.
By the way, who is Google Panda, and what is it doing in Google?
Many of you may have heard and know about it, but it’s worth discussing it here in this context. Google Panda was launched in 2011 as part of the search engine’s mission to wipe out black hat SEO practices and web spam. Black hat SEO is some practice that is used to get a higher ranking in search. But they are against the guidelines of search engines. Duplicated or low-quality content is a black-hat SEO, and this practice has become a challenge to search results.
When search results were mainly affected by black hat SEO and ‘content farm,’ Google rolled out Panda. It is an algorithm to assess the quality of content. Simply put, through Panda, Google concentrates on quality and user experience. It was one of the first steps taken by Google to reduce the ranking of low-quality content websites. Consequently, Panda became a nightmare for many bloggers and content creators who prepared content to increase ranking. So, they started trying new strategies and looked for ways to recover from the Panda update. However, a well-reputed SEO company tried to understand the motive of the algorithm and concentrated on the quality of the content because content quality is the basis of SEO.
In this blog, we aim to discuss low-quality content and how it ruins high-quality content and ranking.
The topics we cover:
- Quality content
- Low-quality content
- Content quality and ranking
- How low-quality content can be identified and removed
- Quality content and SEO
You may be fed up with this term if you are a content writer or content generator. Writing quality content is challenging and demands expertise, research skills, and knowledge of the topic. But quality content pays for the effort by securing a better ranking in search engine results, thereby achieving more visitors and leads.
Quality of content is a subjective attribute, and it will change from reader to reader. If a reader already knows the content of a webpage or blog, they rate it as low quality. On the other hand, the same content attracts other readers as they find something valuable in it and rate it as high quality. In short, the person who consumes the content determines its quality.
Characteristics of high-quality content:
- High-quality content creates trust in consumers at first look. So, they continue reading.
- Many readers check the author’s name before they start reading. So, high-quality content is usually penned by an expert.
- Original content is the essence of high-quality content.
- Compared with other web pages with the same content, high-quality content pages have valuable information.
- It is written in standard format with the least or no factual or grammatical errors.
- Simple, readable, understandable, neatly edited, and proofread copy.
- High-quality content satisfies readers’ expectations and provides them with what they want.
- Content pages without annoying advertisements.
But what Panda considers as high-quality content matters here. Google says they won’t disclose actual ranking signals in the algorithm as they don’t want writers to concentrate on search engine ranking rather than concentrating on content quality. Instead of focusing on algorithms, trying to improve the quality of the website will bring you better ranking traffic. An SEO and content marketing Glasgow company can help you to create quality content.
As the name implies, it is quality-deficient content on a website, and it is also known as thin content or shallow content. Search engines like Google are reluctant to rank low-quality content pages, so they designed Panda and Penquin-like algorithms to detect such content.
There is no definite description for low-quality content, which may depend on content consumers. The content you consider low quality may seem like quality content to your friend. So, it is totally up to the readers and their knowledge, thinking, and experience levels.
Yet, some common characteristics of web pages or blogs that come under the low-quality content category are:
- The overall look of the low-quality content creates a bad impression on consumers at first look itself.
- Grammatical and punctual errors and lack of flow.
- The page contains a lot of advertisements aimed at clicks and money generation.
- The main copy looks dull and short.
- Copied content, nothing new.
- Irrelevant content, not updated ever since publishing.
- Not complete.
- Huge response time.
If you find many characteristics mentioned above on most of the pages of a website, they may fall under the low-quality or thin or shallow content category. These web pages are not fit for search engine optimization, and they can hurt the ranking of the whole website.
In February 2011, Google launched Panda. The next day, they published some details of the update, making it clear that it aims to improve search results by eliminating low-quality content. Months later, they again clarified that they are focused on helping people find high-quality content search results, and Panda was just one of the hundreds of search improvement measures taken. In that blog, Google guided content generators that low-quality content on any part of the website can hurt the overall website ranking. They further advised removing, merging, or improving low-quality content could eventually help rank high-quality content on the same website.
There is no doubt that so-called thin, shallow, or low-quality content can ruin the high-quality content of the same website, but how’s that? How does low-quality content create a bad impression about the whole site?
Experts say if the majority of pages in your site are filled with thin content, then there is a chance that even the pages containing quality content get branded as low-quality pages in Google search. In other words, a site with keyword stuff made for SEO content aimed at high rank will negatively impact your quality content.
Identifying and removing low-quality content
If you feel your site is losing organic traffic, you must check for the content quality of pages. Outdated or copied content can be a reason for low ranking and traffic. Upon request from publishers, Google published some guidelines to improve ranking on search engines, particularly for those affected by the Panda algorithm. The point they stress is to focus on developing high-quality content rather than trying to optimize content for Google algorithm. Inspect your site frequently for outdated content and remove or move it to subdomains. If you need help in developing quality content, contact a trusted content marketing agency.
Quality content and SEO
When Google released the Panda algorithm, many thought it was the end of SEO. But that was not true. Panda algorithm aims to eliminate black hat SEO and keyword-stuffed content. But an SEO expert focus on creating high-quality content rather than merely stuffing keywords into the content. The panda algorithm gave the right direction for SEO professionals to head toward high ranking. Developing a proper content management strategy is the essence of post-Panda SEO. Algorithms are not a challenger; they are trying to help searchers to find the quality content they want. So, providing quality website content
can automatically make your website successful. At the same time, watch out for your content’s expiry, and make them update or remove it to ensure high-quality content does not get hurt. If you find difficulty identifying shallow content on the site, seek help from an SEO consultant.