Back in February I wrote about the growing fashion to buy up multiple keyword-rich domains - like "big-grey-widgets.com", "small-grey-widgets.com" etc - in the hope of gaining higher rankings on Google. There was some evidence that this type of domain could indeed rank well, without requiring many inbound links. At the time, though, I cautioned against this approach. Google has a history of acting against such practices by de-emphasising the spammy element and wiping out any benefit gained. Since then, we have seen it do just that with links on article sites.
Thanks to the global economy and the internet, the world is a smaller place. And now, hiring staff is insanely easy thanks to the rise of the remote-working freelancer.
For a start-up owner especially, the rise of the freelancer is absolute gold. Talent is available with a few clicks of a mouse, from the most difficult of tasks to the most trivial. Freelancing platforms such as Freelancer.co.uk give you an almost unlimited pool of ranked and reviewed suppliers willing to bid for your job.
Over the last year or so I've noticed an increasing fashion for adopting multiple keyword- enhanced domains, such as such as ‘small-green-widgets.com’, ‘large-green-widgets.com’, ‘large- blue-widgets.com’ etc, in order to gain advantage in Google’s rankings. Several clients have noticed competitors apparently achieving good results with this method, and have asked me if I think they should follow suit.
You may recall back in January a scheme by Belkin employee Mike Bayard was found out. Bayard used Amazon's Mechanical Turk (a site designed to hire workers for online tasks that can't be automated) to recruit people to provide positive reviews of a Belkin product. Bayard was offering 65 cents per positive review as well as asking reviewers to down-rate any existing negative reviews.
Hop into my Tardis, I want to take you back to those heady, glorious, recession-free days of 2007.
Two of the largest deals that year were based around advertising. Google acquired online ad company Double Click for a $3bn. In the meantime, and keen not to be left out, Microsoft stumped up $250 million for a less than 2% share in FaceBook. Sure, these figures seem a little crazy today, but the truth is that online marketing really works.