Matt Cutts has just released a new video on the Google Webmaster Help YouTube Channel with a great response to a strange question about content stitching from Rajesh in India.
For those who don’t know, content stitching is when a post or page consists of mainly quotes or pieces of content which has been copied from a number of different websites – basically, a paragraph or more from a number of different sources. The problem is this provides little to no value to visitors.
Content Stitching – YAY or NAY?
If I was to hazard a guess before seeing this video, I would have said no. Google is all about providing value to their searchers and simply providing snippets from a million other sites simply won’t cut it.
Rahesh, from New Delhi, India asks:
Hi Matt, can a site still do well in Google if I copy only a small portion of content from different websites and create my own article by combining it all?
Strange question don’t you think? It does make you wonder what type of ship this guy is running, or maybe it’s just something he has always wondered. Either way, it’s a little odd for me – obvious, too.
Matt took a deep breath and sighed before saying:
I fear you might be heading for heartbreak Rahesh, so let me walk you through this…
Yes, just as I suspected.
I think at this point in the video, Rahesh probably unplugged his computer and tossed it out the window before promising himself that he’d never use one again. Slightly harsh (and funny) but it’s people like him who are plaguing our internet with trash. I might be wrong, but I doubt it – sorry Rahesh!
Matt explains that Yahoo! used to refer to this technique as ‘stitching’ and they really hated it. It’s spam!
If all you’re doing is taking quotes from everybody else, that’s probably not a lot of added value. So, I would really ask yourself are you doing this automatically, why are you doing this? People don’t just like to watch a clip show on TV.
I’m guessing Matt hasn’t seen Channel 4’s Rude Tube – but I do understand what he’s saying.
Matt ends the video by saying:
If you’re just wholesale copying sections from individual articles, that’s probably going to be a high risk area and I might encourage you to avoid that if you can.
Here’s the video:
Value, Value, Value
Remember – human beings like yourself will be reading your content.
If you were searching for something on Google and really needed a great answer, how disappointed and frustrated would you be if you landed on a website which didn’t give you what you wanted?
Write awesome and compelling content and provide as much value as your knowledge and meaningful research allows. Doing this will ensure that any visitors to your site are both happy and impressed, increasing the likelihood of them becoming a returning visitor. That is always a big bonus!