Google Issues Set of Best Practices, Asks Publishers/Bloggers for Full Disclosure
March 17, 2016
It’s not news that a number of publishers these days post reviews for products and services which they may have received for free from companies. Google is certainly no stranger to this happening and there has been no condemnation of the practice either. In fact, Google has recently made a move to improve these kinds of reviews and introduce more ethical practices by issuing a set of best practices for the same.
Bloggers and Publishers often either publish reviews or write reviews themselves for products which they receive for free from companies or agencies. While this isn’t a wrong practice, Google has asked publishers to follow certain processes when they do post such reviews for the advantage of the readers; the audience. Companies, SEO professionals and bloggers must remember to practice these points.
The Google Webmaster Guidelines are as follows:
Nofollow links- Of course, you are bound to link the product review back to the company’s website or landing page. In doing so, Google has asked bloggers to use the nofollow tag and in fact, they have asked the companies to remind publishers as well.
Disclosure- Since these reviews can very well be understood to be paid reviews or sponsored content, Google asks that these articles or pieces have disclosure on the top right side itself to make the readers aware.
Content should be purposeful- Another point or best practice to remember is to ensure that content should not be for the mere purpose of promotion but have some kind of purpose. In other words, it must be unique and have something to say.
Content marketing should be done with this purpose in mind as well.
So, bloggers and companies beware, Google wants you to post reviews ethically.