Trash Content Sites & How to Beat Them


I have been following various discussions recently on the topic of trash content sites. What are they? These are sites created with the express purpose of generating Google AdSense income or affiliate commissions.

Lone webmasters, and even some companies, put up dozens of sites, all with poor or purchased content, and then stuff the pages with AdSense ads and affiliate links.

Most gather their content together by a combination of means…reprinting syndicated articles, buying content, cutting and pasting “public domain” information, or writing short, keyword-rich, but essentially useless blocks of text per page.

You have probably seen sites like these. They are easy to spot, because the first screen of the page usually comprises a large block of Adsense ads.

Also, many of them are on topics like insurance, loans, mortgages etc…where the PPC prices are very high.

There is both a problem here, and an opportunity.

The problem is that neither Google nor the other major search engines have yet figured out an effective algorithm to identify these sites. As a result, search results are becoming clogged with trash-content.

This is a huge problem for Google, because it undermines its value both as a search engine and as a vendor of advertising.

However, the time will come when Google and the others figure out a way to identify trash content.

And therein lies the opportunity.

Now, as in the past, and for the future…a key to delivering value that will be recognized by both the search engines and your visitors, is to create truly valuable content for your site.

Original, useful, optimized content has always been a magnet for search engines and people, and always will be.

So while you may be listed below some trash content sites for now, the regular addition of quality content pages to your site will ensure you rise up the results listings in the future.

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1 Comment
  1. Cliff Kurtzman says

    Nick, this is exactly right. Our discussion list (which I know you have been a part of in the past) at site is now the top ranked Google result for a search on “Online Advertising.” There has been no real attempt to optimize the pages… but there is a history or more than 13,000 postings over a period of 10 years, and those postings we have made public are indeed a Google magnet, just as you have described. I think that the fact that there are so many links pointing to the site with the words “Online Advertising” in the link name also helps boost the pagerank of the site so that Google sees it as being an authoritative reference on the subject. –Cliff

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