There’s still lots of chatter around on Google’s recent Helpful Content Update (discussed last week) which has devastated many previously successful niche sites who thought they were producing, well, helpful content.
Instead they now find themselves outranked by (in their view) low-quality user-generated content from the likes of Reddit and Quora.
So what gives?
One clue comes from this recent Twitter exchange between one of our favourite commentators, Anne Moss of yeys.com, and Google’s John Mu.
John states how there are ‘authority’ blogs written by people who are not an authority, and Anne responds asking why should Google be so judgmental:
@gucciblogger@ArielleCPX What does it matter who created those pages or what their motivation was? Either the page is good (helpful and matches user intent) or it's not. I fail to see why Google should be so judgmental about our motivation. You're not a volunteer for a nonprofit either...
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“The domain name Media.com is integral to building a premium global media brand. It took months of sourcing and negotiation. We are delighted to have come up with a business and a domain name that we expect millions of people will benefit immensely from.”
The brand name and ability to share and respond to a vast variety of content on Media.com will boost user profiles in search engine results, which is critical for controlling and prominently surfacing narratives and responses that counter misinformation or reputationally harmful content.
Whether or not the reputation management business will be successful at controlling misinformation, the domain on which it sits is an incredible asset.
Not only should you own your audience and diversify away from Google, you should do the same with any platform that is giving the majority of your traffic.
Axios just posted a chart showing how referral traffic from Meta and X have fallen dramatically over the last year:
Traffic referrals to the top global news sites from Meta's Facebook and X, formerly Twitter, has collapsed over the past year.