Over the last ten years, Google has made significant strides in changing the way their search algorithm classifies and ranks websites. They’ve continued to identify and devalue SEO tactics that have been manipulative in practice, such as keyword stuffing and hidden text, which neither provide any additional value or signal of relevance to the actual content. Link building activities have been under fire over the past couple of years, as link building has been a constant power factor for SEO. This has disrupted the way article marketing had been done in the past.
Does Article Marketing Still Work
Article marketing is essentially a basic content marketing practice of writing articles and submitting the articles to directories or other sites where they can be found by the search engine robots. The back links discovered that point to the primary website being promoted provided link juice and helped with search rankings for that site.
While the standard practices won’t yield the same results (or even close) to what they once did a few years back, it would be foolish to claim that article marketing is “dead” or is no longer effective, the game is simply changing.
High Quality Articles to High Quality Directories
Many of the article directories that had been very popular have lost authority with Google. The reason is that the quality of their content was subpar, due to low quality, high quantity article marketing practices that used to work. In response to this, it’s important to pick high quality directories and submit high quality articles. Lean towards quality over quantity in today’s climate, and forget about spinning and submitting articles to 30 different directories. If you’re having a hard time determining which directories are high quality, skip the directories. There are plenty of other places to submit your article content that is still authoritative and will get you results.
Leverage Social Networks
Of course, social networks are very high authority in Google’s eyes. The amount of traffic and time spent on social networking sites dictates this, so be sure to leverage Facebook, Google+ and the others, not only to share links to your content, but to post full articles on the sites, from time to time.
Web 2.0 Sites Before Directories
Sites that are full of user generated content still do great in the search rankings, so consider this as your primary alternative if you’re moving away from article directories. Sites such as Squidoo and Hubpages are still high authority and offer a quality platform to house your articles.
Repurpose Articles Into Different Formats
Lastly, while articles are great and certainly serve their purpose, consider repurposing articles into other formats such as slideshows, video and audio content to take advantage of video sharing sites, podcasting sites and others such as Slideshare and Scribd. These are sites on the rise in search and typically see a pretty consistent flow high quality user content uploaded.