Google Warns Adult Video Scraping Sites
Google Webmaster Central Blog has just posted a new blog post warning webmasters about scraped content and their quality guidelines. In their post, they state they’ve notice many video sites “particularly in the adult industry“ with “thin or scraped content without adding substantial added value to the user”.
When Google is referencing “adult video sites”, no doubt they’re referring to many of the porn tube sites built by embedding iframe videos from other popular porn sites. This is a great way to build porn sites without the need to develop and host content.There are various adult scripts out there that will even pull and post the videos automatically.
As Google has pointed out, there are some disadvantages. Those disadvantages are duplicate content. That doesn’t mean that adult embed tube sites won’t work, it just means that content has to be added or modified in order to keep things “fresh”.
A lot of these automated scripts, however, could eventually be done away with. The problem with scripts is that usually they won’t change up the title or any additional text content that could be scraped from the tube site. Now imagine if there are hundreds of adult webmasters running the same scripts. That’s a lot of duplicate content. If the script doesn’t change the title from the tube site it originally scraped it from, then you’re competing with the original tube site. Even though you may gain a longtail, you will never outrank the original tube site for their own content if it’s 100% duplicate.
The Solution? Add Additional Content!
It’s amazing how big of a difference adding a description can make. Google likes words. Since the porn industry is mainly video and image-based, it can make things complicated. Remember how Playboy had all those articles and few pictures, while all the hardcore mags had little text and a whole lot of images? Think Playboy. You need the text. Humans love to look, crawlers love to read.
And please, don’t use the same title as the tube site the embed code is coming from. Like it was mentioned earlier, you are never going to out-SEO the original source with the same title. You might get a longtail, maybe even first page but you won’t outrank them.
Affiliate Content – RSS & Promotional Content
Notice how Google explicitly calls out affiliate marketers. It’s long been rumored that Google has a grudge against affiliate marketers, which is ironic as Google has an affiliate network themselves. Maybe they detest affiliate marketing outside of their network. Maybe Google only hates spammy affiliates and has respect for the more whitehat ones. You decide.
Either way, there is one big concern with adult affiliate marketing programs, and that is that it is all essentially duplicate content. The advantage is, you’re probably only competing with other affiliates and not necessarily the porn site itself as they hide most their content behind pay-walls.
RSS feeds have to be the worst, and I’m sure a great deal of what Google is referencing is dealing with content syndicated through RSS feeds. Imagine how many webmasters subscribe to the same feeds. Sure, some programs have “smart feeds” that display dynamic content, but there’s got to be some overlap somewhere.
Galleries and video files are duplicate as well. So when all the webmasters are working with the same content, how do you solve duplicate content issues? For the most part, the solutions are the same as for the tube site conundrum; Modify and add content.
Create Unique Titles And Descriptions
The solution to the duplicate issue with affiliate content is to make it “not duplicate”. Sure, the images and video content will essentially be the same, but there are ways of doing this. The first, is like the sub-title suggests; Create unique titles and descriptions. Use a unique URL structure. There are elements on the page that you can control, and even though portions of the content may be duplicate, the titles and descriptions can be 100% unique.
It’s also possible to change the file names and meta information for image and video files prior to uploading. By modifying these from their original forms, it makes the content that much “less duplicate” than everyone else.
To no surprise, these are also the SEO best practices.