Technorati reports that 30,000 – 40,000 new blogs are being created each day.
According to David Sifry, part of the growth of new blogs created each day is due to an increase in spam blogs.
What are spam blogs? They are fake blogs that are created by robots in order to foster link farms, attempted search engine optimization, or drive traffic through to advertising or affiliate sites.
They contain robot-generated posts made up of random words, with the title linking back to the blogger’s own pages.
Many bloggers see them as a way of getting their pages indexed quickly by Google and other search engines.
Sifry estimates that about 20% of the aggregate pings Technorati receives are from spam blogs. Most of this fake blog spam comes from hosted services or from specific IP addresses.
Those in the SEO world are well aware of this. There are even services like Blogburner that encourage creation of spammy blogs and spam-pinging to get your sites indexed quickly.
As a blogging evangelist, I wholeheartedly recommend blogging as an SEO tactic. But I also emphasize that you should use your blog for more than just SEO.
At the Spam Squashing Summit, blog services decided to collaborate to report and combat blog-spamming.
Technorati currently claims to catch about 90% of spam and remove it from the index. They also notify the blog hosting operators.
But I believe that they are fighting a losing battle. As I write this there are software and robots being created that will create spam-blogs more efficiently and in ways that will be harder to detect.
The SEO “black hats” are always far ahead of the technology and safeguards that these services can put in place.
Take down a few spam-blogs and hundreds more will arise.
Blogging evangelist and PR guru, Steve Rubel, sums up this dilemma rather well on his Micropersuasion blog.
He believes that its human nature for people to exploit new technologies, and that it’s really up to the search engines to help put a stop to these by undercutting the economics of blogspam, much like they did with nofollow and comment spam.
But the trade-off is that such a move would also reduce any impact that blogs have on search results.
Fact: The more you abuse a technology, the less effective it becomes.
Spam blogging will force search engines like Google to change their ranking algorithms and eventually assign less value to links from blogs.
Unless they put in safeguards to prevent robots from taking over, its safe to assume that blogging will become less effective as an SEO tactic over time.
Of course, the spammers will then just have to find new avenues and means to spam the engines.
But why ruin a good thing in the first place? Blogs are much more than just tools for search engine optimization.
A blog can be a great tool for personal branding and building relationships with your website visitors and customers.
Instead of using blogs for spam, focus on building content-rich sites and getting high-value links to them.
Don’t restrict yourself to just the SEO benefits of blogging.
Appreciate the value that blogs can add to your marketing and public relations strategy and use them the way they were meant to be used.