Why on earth would I want to talk about article marketing in general and article spinning in particular?
You know where I stand on quality link building vs quantity, and if not, read the post I just linked to.
However, personal opinions aside, I want to find out what works and what doesn’t, so that you can base your own opinion on the most intelligent information I find.
Some 10 days ago, Alex Whalley from AlexWhalley.com decided to put Unique Article Wizard (article spinning/submission software) to the true test:
The question I want to know is, Does Article Marketing work on it’s own? – and how effective is it (really?)
I also want to find out if Unique Article Wizard works.
Here’s the link to Alex’s original post:
FYI: all UAW links in this post are Alex’s affiliate links – figured he’s doing all the work, might as well benefit from it. So if you decide to buy the products, please go through his link.
So when I saw his non-challenge self-challenge, I naturally thought I’d follow his experiment and kill two birds with one stone: see if Unique Article Wizard in particular and article marketing in general is still a valid link building venue (…nah…) and not have to work at it myself other than writing a post or two.
Additionally, I went to the source that Alex mentioned in his post – Pat Flynn from SmartPassiveIncome.com, who recently wrote a killer guest post on how to build an email list, to see what his thoughts are on the matter, as well as Robert Dempsey from ItinerantEntrepreneur.com, who accepted Alex’s non-challenge and decided to give it a test run on some of his niche sites: I Accept Your Non-Challenge Alex Whalley.
Article Marketing and Panda Update
Aside from the fact that I think article marketing as a means of link building and traffic generation for a site like mine is a waste of time (feel free to prove me wrong in comments), I read an article by Unique Article Wizard titled Lovin’ Google’s new algorithm! (thanks for the link, Alex), in which they talk about why Google recent algorithm update didn’t affected UAW sites.
Problem I had with that post is the fact that the author mentions many a time that quality is paramount for UAW sites and submissions, yet nowhere do they address how they maintain quality.
As a matter of fact, about a year ago, when I tested UAW for a couple of months, I chose the option to receive the content submitted by other users of UAW and after being flooded with tons of subpar content I would never publish to any site, let alone TGC, I quickly turned that option off.
The Culprit: Pat Flynn
Unfortunately, Pat wasn’t available to let us know what he thought of Alex’s endeavor, but here is one of Pat’s posts on the subject you might find interesting:
Note: Pat did make quite a few good points on the subject in the comment area; so be surely to take a look there.
Article Marketing Challenge Update: Alex Whalley
I spoke to Alex Whalley to get his take on how his self-challenge is going on so far and here’s what he had to say:
- How is it going so far?
Surprisingly well actually. Apart from the incessantly boring task of writing and rewriting articles on a topic I could not care less about – the actual results I am seeing in relation to rank have been good.
- How long does it take you to spin an article?
It takes me anywhere from 60 – 90 minutes to write, rewrite and then submit an article. The actual spinning (actually rewriting is how UAW approach it) takes about 30minutes. (see my process in this post)
- On average, how many websites accept an article = how many potential links you get?
It used to be a lot, but since the updates to Google’s Algorithm the number of sites in the UAW network has decreased dramatically.
They claim it is now more focused on relevancy and quality rather than quantity, but I am yet to be convinced (and I doubt I ever will be)
The Articles that have been submitted for the challenge to date ended there run after being accepted by 115 and 132 sites respectively.
Of these sites, I randomly checked 40 of them and had an 80% success rate.
- With the new Panda update, are you concerned about getting low-quality links from possibly many autoblogs?
Ironically this was more of a problem pre-panda.
As I mentioned in the last sentence, the sites used within the UAW network are (apparently) checked and audited so that spammy sites are not part of your backlinks.
Again I refute this simply because some of the active links I did follow were utter crap. In fact I remember 5 of the sites being mirror images of each other – indicating to me that it was the same owner, and most likely all on the same IP too.
But I am not concerned, mainly because I have always had relative success with UAW, just not on it’s own.
I have to admit I am beginning to doubt its worth, especially considering how much time I am investing with the article creation and submission part.
- Do you think these article marketing strategies works specifically for niche sites or would you do it for your main blog?
I would never do this for my main blog, and it relates to the last question you mentioned – low-quality links.
I have no doubt that the links I get from this method are of low quality, but that’s the point.
The way I intergrate Unique Article Wizard into my process means that it does the job of providing all my link layers to be fed a constant source of (semi) relevant incontent links from articles. Obviously in this challenge I have no other ‘properties’ to optimize so I am focusing solely on the money site – but since it’s a niche site, then it’s OK.
My own blog has received a dose of these backlinks before, but that was before I knew better.
Definitely works on niche sites though.
Article Marketing Challenge Update: Robert Dempsey
The reason that I joined Alex’s challenge of article marketing, specifically using UAW, was because I have heard a lot about article marketing and spinning, but hadn’t tried any of it before. I paid for a few article spins and submissions to get some links, but use my favored PPC to drive traffic to my surveys and opt-ins (works well too btw).
Frankly I thought that a bunch of crap links from God-knows-where sites wouldn’t amount to anything.
So you could say I was a bit skeptical of the entire thing, but I decided to test it on one of my niche sites.
However, something must be working as I jumped over 200 spots literally overnight for my #1 keyword; I have 3 major keywords total for this niche site. In short, my #1 is currently ranking 49 and my #2 is ranking 31. Not bad considering that last week I was over 270 for #2 and not even ranking for my #1.
The only issue I have with this entire process is that it takes me an hour to “spin” an article.
The way it works with UAW is that you take a single article, and then rewrite each paragraph two times. So rather than using a spin syntax, you are literally creating 3 different versions of the same article.
When my first article was submitted I was happy to see that it was sent to more than 120 sites. However when I went to ping the articles, I found that the reality is that only about 30-45% of the sites actually accepted the articles.
This could be because my article didn’t fit their sites. However some of the links led to 404 pages.
Now I need to put this in context.
I first launched this site a few months ago, and had 20 articles posted previously – all written by an article writer. Google knows all about the site, and the sitemap is now updated regularly and submitted to the big 3 search engines. I also have PPC running to it from Yahoo/Bing. The blog is a full blog – email opt-in, comments, the whole 9 yards. So this site is set up as an authority site, with the one exception being the homepage, which is currently a survey.
So far the results seem to speak for themselves. It wasn’t until I started this challenge and pinged all the articles that I saw a huge bump in rankings, ranking that continue to improve.
Over time we’ll see.
Would I use this for my own site?
However, I am using a version of article marketing, but with that I’m targeting “better” sites to syndicate my content too. I’ll be doing that with this niche site and others as well.
These things aren’t free, but they do work and are getting my niche site ranked much faster than I expected.
Unique Article Marketing Takeaway: Ana
As I previously mentioned, a few month ago I decided to try out Unique Article Wizard on one of my sites.
Here’s what I wrote in Link Building: What’s Naughty, What’s Nice?:
My objective was to build links to one of my websites and push it up the Google ladder; at that time the website was ranked #10 for my main keyword. Besides taking up all my time spinning the articles until my head was spinning, UAW did the exact opposite of what I expected: it pushed my site further down, all the way to the third page as a matter of fact.
Since back then I didn’t have enough experience to analyze why my website went down like a torpedo, I kept spinning and submitting article until one kind soul who knew a thing or two about SEO told me to stop. Within that week, my site was back on the first page. Soon after it was in the top 3.
One might certainly might argue it was a coincidence or there must’ve been other factors that came into play.
But remember, my blog – my story – my conclusions.
Point: UAW might give you an initial push in rankings, but then turn it upside down and you’ll find yourself back on page 200.
Longevity is still in question and only time will tell whether the ranking from Alex and Robert will hold water.
The floor is yours… I am sure you’ve got a lot to say on the subject and I want to hear it all.
Comment to show me that you’re alive!