It’s a very effective medium for promoting all kinds of products and services online. But, it has changed over the years.
One of the questions I get a lot from aspiring affiliate marketers is, “If I use article marketing to promote products, do I need a website/blog?”
How Google Changed Marketing with Articles
It used to be that you could write an article, SEO it, and get it to rank on the first few pages of Google pretty easily. I know, I’ve done it dozens of times.
But starting with Google’s Panda algorithm update back in 2011, it’s gotten harder and harder to do this.
You see, the specific purpose of this update was to stop sites with “poor content” from showing up in search results. The online tech mag, Search Engine Land explained the update in the following manner in the snippet, What is the Google Panda Update?
Google’s Panda Update is a filter introduced in February 2011 meant to stop sites with poor quality content from working their way into Google’s top search results. Panda is updated from time-to-time. When this happens, sites previously hit may escape, if they’ve made the right changes.
One of the things that the Panda Update considered “poor content” was duplicate content, ie, content that was distributed via article directories. This is because an article distributed via an article directory could ostensibly be found on hundreds of sites.
So, even if your article was great, ie, informative, well written, in-depth and helpful to web surfers, it could still be flagged as “poor” because it got distributed via article directories.
That decreased the chances that it would rank well in search engines. Note: I still have content distributed via article directories that rank well, just not as many articles as before.
This brings me to why you should get a website/blog if you use article marketing. Namely, you need a “home” on the web to drive traffic to – no matter which method(s) you use to distribute your content.
You see, when you have a website/blog, you can build “a community” around it – a community of followers that will bookmark and come back to on their own. When you do this, you make search results returned by sites like Google irrelevant.
How to “Beat Google” Using Article Marketing
In short, you circumvent Google; you begin to make them irrelevant because you don’t rely on them to send you traffic – you build your own traffic sources.
When web surfers visit you on their own (without being sent your way by a Google or Yahoo! or Bing), you have a better chance of turning them into paying customers. Why? Because it signals that they’re becoming invested in you, your content and your products and services.
Once customers: (i) know you exist; and (ii) like (ie, become invested in you), then when they need the type of product/service you offer, you have a much better chance of them purchasing from you than some unknown vendor.
In conclusion, article marketing is still a very effective method for promoting (affiliate) products and services online. It’s one of the reasons I started my own article directory (http://inkwelleditorial.com/
Good luck with your article marketing efforts.
About the Author: Yuwanda Black heads New Media Words, an SEO writing company, and is the publisher of Inkwell Editorial, a blog devoted to helping others start successful, home-based writing careers. She's also the author of over 50 ebooks, most of which cover some aspect of freelance / SEO writing. They can be found on major outlets like Amazon and Barnes & Noble. She’s used internet article marketing (http://inkwelleditorial.com/