Before I even start, I have to say that while I’ve known about the following principle for some time, it was only this last few weeks since reading about it in Mark’s Dominating Google course, and then doing some tests that I learned how deep this really goes.
And what I learned shocked me.
However it turns out that what the big G is looking for is much more than these 3 pages.
It starts HERE, a little page in the Adwords guidelines about Quality Score (one of Google’s measures of the quality of a page or a website) where they discuss (if you scroll about half way down) a little thing called Transparency.
To quote them:
“In order to build trust with users, your site should be explicit in three primary areas: the nature of your business, how your site interacts with a visitor’s computer and how you intend to use a visitor’s personal information, if you request it.”
And more specifically, that they want to see you:
* Openly share information about your business. Clearly define what your business is or does.
* Honour the deals and offers that you promote in your ad.
* Deliver products and services as promised.
* Only charge users for the products and services that they order and successfully receive.
* Distinguish sponsored links from the rest of your site content.
In case it’s not perfectly clear at this juncture:
This is Google telling you exactly how they want your site to be, in order for them to consider it high quality. If you are looking for traffic from Google there’s every reason to follow these guidelines as strictly as possible!
What I learned from Mark at Dominating Google, was a full list of the templates or pages that you need to have, that are required for you to be seen as a “quality” site. They are:
What I mean is, and what Google wants to see, is both the presence of these posts/pages, and links to these posts/pages in your site’s footer (or somewhere on your site) so they are visible on every page/post of your site.
Now To My Tests
In sending traffic from Adwords campaigns to various landing pages (landing websites) this past few weeks I’ve noticed some extraordinary things.
First of all, I tried putting up a landing page with a unique piece of content, not heavy on affiliate links, on a keyword targeted domain, with a highly keyword targeted ad campaign…
Quality Score = 1 – Google wouldn’t even let the ad run. They refused to send traffic to a landing page without those templates as part of their site content.
This was only meaningful when compared to my other landing pages that were exactly the same in every other way except they DID have these pages. Quality Score there = 8 – sending traffic no problems at all.
But it got even more interesting…
At first, the quality score was ok, but after about a week… bang… mysteriously dropped to 1 and the ad stopped getting traffic. Again it had NOTHING different from the other site with the 8 quality score except it had less of the pages from the above list… and that was enough… it was out.
Are you starting to see how important Google considers these pages?
What makes you think they are going to treat sites differently in the organic search algorithm?
What this means is that without those pages up you might be sabotaging your success, your free traffic suffering without you even realizing it.
What To Do About It
In which ever way suits you, you need to get these pages onto your site ASAP. There are a few options:
1.You need to do some searching online and find you some templates for each of these pages that you can craft for your own sites. Find the template and add the pages (or posts) to your blog/website as quickly as you can.
2. Mark has a set of templates that he gives away as part of Dominating Google – which as I’ve mentioned this month, is a fantastic course anyway.
3. We’ve just implemented a new feature into our Firepow software, where you can add ALL of these pages to any blog you have, in ONE click. It will add the templates and replace the relevant information so they suit your site in about 10 seconds. (Patrik, if you’re reading – thanks for the suggestion!) If you’re not an FP member, you can try it out for $1 here.
Since I use blogs, I’ve been adding these pages of content as POSTS, and using a plugin called WP Hide Post (find in your WP admin >> Plugins >> Add New >> then search that name) to make sure they don’t appear on my blog’s home page for visitors to see. It also saves you making them as “Pages” after which they will take up valuable room in your “pages” menu usually located somewhere prominent like your blog header or sidebar.
After seeing the aforementioned results this couple of weeks I can’t stress enough how important these pages are to your chances of success with free OR paid traffic, not even just for affiliate marketers but for EVERYONE.
If you have time, do it NOW. It’s an easy way to knock over a bunch of your competitors who haven’t realized this yet and in doing so get a bunch of traffic and a stack of new income.