Few days ago, we read that Google has issued a friendly notice to bloggers who receive free products, endorsements or promotions from brand companies.
It was mentioned that we, bloggers should include a ‘nofollow’ links to any products or services we reviewed so that it won’t force to display in organic search results.
Many go crazy, panicking on why it is too late for Google to drop the bomb wherein they (Google) suspended some blog sites that suspiciously accepting ‘paid’ links injected to their blog posts or running a link advertisements.
Here are some of my takeaways that may help you to understand what Google really wanted to happen:
- DO NOT PANIC. If you have included links as a token of appreciation after receiving your free products or services on each of your blog post, do not worry about it. If Google flagged your website and suspended your domain in Search Results the best thing to consider is to check on your neighbor links (they may be spammed or have malwares) and follow the guidelines on how to submit for reconsideration in Google.
- Write more comprehensive blog stories. If you were invited to any events or receive free products consider posting your personal insights and make the post more convincing rather than making it sound like an advertisement.
- I also suggest you to include a disclaimer at the beginning or end of your story. You may say that these items you received were for review or this was a sponsor post or something that you can claim that you have partnership with brands. I know disclosing it can create an issue or conflict but I would rather say that I bought this ‘product’ and I recommend this to everyone to use it because I tested it on myself and the results were effective.
- If you accepted a project and it’s not your area of interest. Maybe Google will suspiciously tagged the website and mark as spam because it was obviously ‘injected’ and the content was poorly written. To avoid such kind of embarrassment, choose projects that you think will recognize you as a ‘blogger’ or ‘brand ambassador’ not for the sake of ‘earning money.’
How to include a ‘nofollow’ tag on your posts? Here’s an example when hyperlinking a text going to a specific webpage:
Edit html post and type in <a href=”signin.php” rel=”nofollow”>sign in</a>
On a final note, Google is just testing you and we are not sure how it can be discouraging or will affect our blog sites. If you are 100% sure that you are following the best practices, then, you are safe.
Here’s what Experts say about this Issue: