How Do Affiliate Sites Cope with the Last 2024 Google Algorithm Update?

How Do Affiliate Sites Cope with the Last 2024  Google Algorithm Update?
Google Update

SEO

Written by

Sebastien

PUBLISHED ON

June 14, 2024

Category

SEO

Google's impactful March 2024 Core Update combats low-quality content and rolls out new spam policies to crack down on manipulative practices. ❌

To all affiliate marketers, this is your go-to blog post to ensure extra carefulness with your website following the algorithm update! ✔️

Let’s dive together into more details: 

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Overview of the March 2024 Core Update

The Google Helpful Content Update is now part of the core algorithm update, resulting in a 45% reduction in unhelpful content in search results. Following the March 5th update, many websites, including affiliate sites, experienced a drop in rankings or were deindexed by Google due to quality issues. 

Google's March 2024 Core Update introduces algorithm changes to enhance search result quality and new spam policies targeting scaled content abuse, site reputation abuse and expired domain abuse. 

Understanding the core algorithm and learning how to adapt to these changes will benefit all affiliates.

Why Does It Matter to Affiliate Sites?

With the March 2024 core update, Google will no longer announce new helpful content updates, as the helpful content system is now integrated into the core update system.

The helpful content classifier has been revamped and incorporated into the March 2024 core update. However, this isn't the only system included in the update; Google's work on this update began with the 2022 helpful content update.

If your rankings drop, here’s the advice Google has provided for dealing with core updates:

  1. There are no specific actions to take for recovery. A drop in rankings doesn’t necessarily indicate a problem with your pages.
  2. Evaluate your content quality by answering key questions about its value and relevance.
  3. Wait for the next core update. While some improvements can occur between updates, significant changes are more likely after a new core update.

In essence, focus on creating helpful content for users rather than solely aiming to rank in search engines. But let’s dive deeper into this. 

What Are the New Core Algorithm Rules That Affiliates Should Beware

Google rules to follow

1) Scaled Content Abuse Search Spam

The scaled content abuse search spam policy is an update to the old “spammy automatically-generated content” policy. It now encompasses any method of producing content at scale for the purpose of ranking in search. 

Google clarified that creating content at scale to boost search rankings—whether through automation, human efforts, or a combination of both—violates its guidelines

“This update allows us to address more types of content with little to no value that are created at scale, such as pages that claim to answer popular searches but fail to provide helpful information,” Google stated. 

Examples of such deceptive pages are those that promise to answer a question but lead the user through low-quality content without ever providing a satisfying answer.

Google’s longstanding spam policy states that the use of automation, including generative AI, is considered spam if its primary purpose is to manipulate search rankings. The updated policy maintains the same principle, expanding to include more sophisticated methods of scaled content creation where the low quality isn't always immediately apparent. 

The new policy emphasizes that producing content at scale is abusive if it is used to manipulate search rankings, regardless of whether automation or human effort is involved.

Long story short, using technology to create spammy pages that do not provide much value to the users, is considered ranking manipulation, which should be avoided.

2) Expired Domain Abuse Now Considered Spam

The practice of purchasing expired domains and repurposing them with the intention of boosting the search ranking of low-quality content is now considered spam. This technique may attempt to deceive users into believing new content on a domain is part of the old site when it may not. 

This is a specific and clear message to content creators not to purchase expired domains with the intent of repurposing them to rank in Google Search.

Lots of affiliates purchase expiring domains and use that to boost search ranking with low-quality content, which is now considered spam.

3) Site Reputation Abuse (Aka Parasite Seo) Is Spam Too

Google has introduced a new policy targeting what they term "site reputation abuse," a practice often referred to by SEO experts as "Parasite SEO." This tactic involves third-party websites hosting substandard content from external sources to capitalize on those sites' ranking authority.

For instance, Google noted that a third party might post payday loan reviews on a reputable educational platform to boost its own ranking.

According to Google, such content can confuse or mislead users who have different expectations for a particular website's content. Therefore, the new policy aims to label third-party content created primarily for ranking purposes, lacking proper oversight from website owners, as spam.

However, Google clarified that not all third-party content falls under this violation. Content hosted with proper oversight and not intended solely to manipulate search rankings is not considered a breach. 

For instance, advertising content on publications tailored for regular readers rather than manipulating search rankings is not deemed problematic.

To implement this policy, Google provided a two-month notice period starting on May 5, during which it will employ both automated and manual actions against such abuses.

Tips How to Create Profitable Affiliate Marketing Content That Ranked

Boost your content

1) Focus on Self-Experience Review

Reviews are mostly written articles or various content formats, such as videos, that express your perspective on a product or service. They should resonate with readers while offering informative insights about the experience and features and a conclusive recommendation.

Reviews hold significant weight among consumers. Nowadays, most people look for reviews to choose a new phone, a restaurant, or even a doctor! 

Always remember that transparency is key. Readers appreciate seeing both a product's strengths and weaknesses before making a purchase. It's preferable to highlight flaws rather than leave readers disillusioned after purchasing candidly.

2) How-To Articles

Knowing how to use a product or a service is important when buying it. Your content can showcase your affiliate product while teaching your readers how to use it or complete a task. Your how-to article can focus on a specific product or offer recommendations. 

Ensure your title is clear and concise, introduce the problem your product solves, provide step-by-step instructions with visuals, seamlessly integrate your product, and include a call to action. Keep your tone conversational and paragraphs short for easy reading.

Your how-to article can be about one specific product or give recommendations at the end. You can put a how-to article on any text-based platform or as a slideshow or picture series on platforms with images.

When you write how-to articles for affiliate marketing, be friendly. Not everyone knows a lot about the subject already. Use short paragraphs and bullet points so readers can read quickly.

3) Specific Offer Pages

Just like review posts, specific offer pages are a valuable way to earn money from trusting readers. They allow you to link to products and services that have benefited you or your business while also assisting your audience. 

To craft an effective specific offer page, prioritize genuineness, provide detailed descriptions, share personal experiences, offer a variety of options, and keep the page updated regularly.

4) Comparison Guides

Comparison guides, akin to reviews, detail the merits and demerits of a product or service. However, they extend further by comparing how a product/service stacks up against its competitors in the market. 

These guides subtly encourage customers to finalize their purchase, convincing them that the product’s/services’ features outperform rivals. 

They prove particularly beneficial for undecided customers, offering a comprehensive comparison to help them recognize the value of choosing one product/service over others in the market.

Comparison guides written with a neutral tone provide unbiased information for readers to make informed decisions.

Key Components of a Comparison Guide:

  1. Competitor List: Identify main competitors to provide readers with an overview of alternative options available.
  2. Product/Service Key Features: Outline key characteristics, emphasizing differences from competitors in terms of price, design, functionality, and unique features.
  3. Comparison Chart or Table: Visual aids facilitate side-by-side comparison, aiding quick understanding of differences.
  4. Pros and Cons: Include both positive and negative aspects to help readers weigh their options.
  5. Personal Experiences/User Reviews: Incorporate unbiased personal experiences or user reviews for credibility and real-world insights.
  6. Call to Action: Conclude with a clear call to action, such as a purchase link or encouragement to try the product/service.

5) Create Viral Content

Creating content consumes the most time in your content strategy. Engaging content is crucial to attract readers and customers. 

Adhering to SEO best practices is essential to boost website traffic, so focus on crafting content that ranks well in search results. Additionally, consider your customer’s position in the marketing funnel when creating affiliate marketing content.

While most affiliate content aims to drive purchases, focusing on bottom-of-the-funnel or conversion-stage content, some pieces, like how-to articles, product introductions, or videos, may target awareness and generate interest. Always keep the content goal in mind.

Lastly, sharing your product testing process with your audience enhances professionalism and fosters trust. It offers insight into your review process, providing an exclusive glimpse behind the scenes, which audiences appreciate.

6) Choose Top-Rated Affiliate Programs

When crafting content for your target audience, opt for affiliate programs aligned with their interests to strengthen your brand's credibility and attract already interested customers.

It is crucial to choose programs that offer products and services within your audience's budgets and that are in line with their lifestyles.

Search for your target industry alongside "affiliate program" to discover affiliate programs suitable for your audience.

To discover the best affiliate programs suitable for your audience, check out our offers! 

Here’s a blog gathering all the information you need to leverage the best offers for adult affiliate marketing.

What are you waiting for? Create your account or log in and start making more money! We’ll be pleased to help; feel free to contact your affiliate manager or our support team.

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In conclusion, while Google's algorithm updates can be challenging, they also present opportunities for growth. By comprehending the purpose of these changes and adjusting our SEO strategies, we can establish a more resilient and successful online presence.

Stay well-informed, embrace innovation, and prioritize your audience's needs. With these principles, future algorithm updates can be approached with confidence, helping you ascend to the top of the search rankings.

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