A Study in iGaming
In the iGaming sector, many companies which depend on Google traffic for their revenue are exposed to this risk. To understand how much risk sites are exposed to and how it is changing, we analysed the risk of your site dropping significantly from one month to the next.
In order to understand how much risk sites are exposed to, we gathered data for the top 20 ranking domains for 210 casino, bingo, poker and sports-betting keywords over 17 months. These keywords combined represented more than a quarter of a million in monthly UK search volumes. There were 4378 domains in the dataset. 67% of these sites were affiliates, 8% operators, and 25% other sites –
The major findings were that:
- The risk of losing 6 or more rankings, but remaining amongst the top 20 positions doubled over the last 17 months, from 4% to 8%.
- The risk of disappearing from the top 20 altogether remained stable during 2012, but rose in the first 5 months of 2013 from 17% to 26%. (Note that this %age includes sites that dropped for reasons other than ‘spammy links’).
Not every site is equally risky. The risk will be higher if you are a casino, a bingo site and if you are an affiliate, although the risk exposure for operators is catching up quickly with that of affiliates. Being bigger is still good, but it matters less than it used to.
The data suggests that Google is getting serious about removing web spam and the risk of losing rankings is increasing, especially if you used the ‘old school’ SEO tactics that were extremely effective in the past.
Nowadays, it seems better to use highly creative content that people will want to post. This is expensive, so careful planning to optimise your return on investment is a good idea.
You can read the full report here