PRWeb, Marketwire, and PR Newswire are just three press release companies I can think of off the top of my head that are affected by this stat. So what’s going on?
Google has no patience for link building and spammers, so when one of their most organically searched keywords (gardenia cambogia) had a online press release as its top ranking result, they weren’t happy. We’ll never know what black hat tactics were used in the release to get it there, but it set off a downward spiral on the organic search traffic results for many press release companies.
Even though these companies have set strict guidelines and editing teams in place to avoid any further penalties from Google, it seems to not be working. The world’s largest search engine called links in press releases “unnatural” and is mandating nofollowing them. The links they are targeting are called “optimized anchor text” which is a visibly hyperlinked piece of text that takes you to another relevant destination. This is also often where people cheat to hike up their SEO.
So how does the honest folks of the online PR world get around this? Well, you may not be able to use links as effectively but you can still optimize your content with keywords, headlines, videos and photos.
Do you think Google should be penalizing these sites?