Whilst the noise about the Google Panda update (previously called the Farmer update) is beginning to die down, there will still be many websites who should consider the value and quality of all their content and how this may reduce their chances of good listing in the SERPs.

The obvious contenders may not be those you first assume. Aged and static content that has not been updated for some time may actually be bringing in long tail traffic, so don’t just bin old pages without checking your traffic stats and backlinks for those pages first. However, it may be that your business has changed direction since that content was added and it is no longer relevant, so take a look at some of your historic content to ensure it still fits the bill.

More likely culprits for content deemed to be of low quality by the search engines are those which may seem far too similar to other pages on other sites. For instance, if you sell products with a generic product description that other companies also sell, and you have one page per product (required for inclusion in Google Shopping/Base), these product pages may not appear unique to the spiders.

A quick fix would be to add the capability for reviews and testimonials. Until those reviews begin to appear on your site, add a “no index” tag, and then manually remove this from any pages where reviews have been added. You can request reviews from your customers for products that they have purchased, which will also give you a chance to get in touch with your customers and ask for feedback.

Other low quality pages may be a links page that includes broken links, links to irrelevant content, or links which are not providing any link juice to your site. Keep a weather eye on any links on your site to ensure that these are working, relevant and worthwhile.

Check your traffic stats (analytics) to see which pages are rarely visited or have high bounce rates. Check to see why this might be the case – is navigation difficult to reach that page? Is the content out of date or off-topic for your target audience? A quick revamp of your navigation or content may be all that is required to raise the quality score for that page.

And whilst we are talking about Quality Score – take a good look at your PPC, or ensure that your internet marketing agency understands how Quality Score works. One or two keywords in your Pay Per Click campaign that are not performing as they should can have a decidedly negative effect on your QS rating, which will affect your PPC positions.

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About the author:

A practising internet marketing consultant since 1996, Lindsey Annison helps companies improve their website marketing, online PR and information architecture. Lindsey is also a qualified adult education lecturer and author. As co-founder of the Access to Broadband Campaign, she has been instrumental in the provision of high-speed internet access to rural areas in the UK. Lindsey is also a past winner of Silicon.com's Outstanding Contribution to UK Technology