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Google’s spam expert advises marketers on moving archived content

Richard Bell

The head of webspam at Google, Matt Cutts, recently released a video in which he addressed the issue of moving large amounts of content to a new web domain – and how businesses can successfully avoid any negative effects it could have on a site’s SEO.

Over the years, a number of measures have been set in place by Google to improve the experience of its users. The company’s most recent Penguin and Panda algorithm updates aim to improve the content presented in search results by ranking sites with poor quality content and inappropriate links lower down. Conversely, the algorithms work to make properly optimised sites with quality content rank higher, highlighting the importance of content standards and its effect on a site’s traffic.

When businesses acquire a new web domain – perhaps following growth or a rebrand – and look to move all of their archived content from their old site to the new one, the site could be negatively affected in the search rankings.

In his recent video on the Google Webmasters YouTube channel, Cutts rolled out advice to businesses that want to move existing content between places. He said that if a company moved thousands or even just hundreds of pages all at once, the new site could end up coming under review by Google’s spam team – even if the content is of a high standard. Large volumes of digital content are indexed immediately by Google, which investigates such activity due to the low likelihood of a business generating huge volumes of unique content in a single day.

To avoid being flagged by Google’s watchful eye, Cutts advised marketers to upload any existing content in stages – which will allow a company to avoid having its place in the rankings unnecessarily dented.

Richard has a First in English Literature and Creative Writing, and has experience writing fiction and short stories (which he has published both online and in magazines).

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