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You have just decided that you want to start a web site. You pick a topic that interests you, build and tweak your web site template until it's perfect, and create a stunning logo that will instantly attract the attention of your visitors. Now you just have one thing missing, content. Content is the most important component of a web site. It is the factor that determines whether a web site will be a success, or just another couple of megabytes cluttering up the Internet. Because you know this already, you decide to buy content for your web site. For only $39.99, you can buy fifty articles tailored specifically to your site. Now all you have to do is kick back and wait for the money from AdSense to start pouring in.
You know that it can take several weeks for your web site to be indexed by Google, so you're not too discouraged by the almost nonexistent traffic of your web site. However, week after week passes, and there is still no traffic to your web site. You try typing every keyword that relates to your site into Google, but when you start scrolling through the results, your web site is nowhere to be found. How can this be possible? Your web site has over fifty articles! That should be more than enough content for Google to notice. However, the problem does not lie in the quantity of the content or in Google itself. There are three letters are responsible for your web site's nonexistent traffic: PLR.
The articles you bought are known as private label rights (PLR) articles. These articles are normally generated by software which uses keywords to create different article permutations. They are then marketed in bulk as �unique� or �custom� articles that can be used to populate a web site with content and achieve a high search engine ranking. Because these articles are very popular among many novice web masters, they are sold over and over. Because of this, the Internet can become very cluttered with the same duplicate content.
Because this is a known issue, Google and other search engines have created sophisticated software that can detect duplicate content. Whether you directly cut-and-paste or make some minor changes to the articles, search engines are still able to detect this duplicate content with their software. When duplicate content is detected, you search engine ranking suffers a penalty. So if you attempt to build an entire web site with duplicate, there is no hope of ever achieving a ranking within any keyword results.
Along with the damaging your search engine rankings, duplicate content can also present other negative effects. If you create an AdSense monetized web site solely with duplicate content, your site will quickly be labeled by any visitors as a �Made for AdSense� site, which will result in your site earning no profit. Even if your site is created to sell a product or service, it will be discredited and ineffective because of the duplicate content.
As a followup to this article (which was commissioned for the sake of this followup), I want to list a very good example that taught me the hard way about the pitfalls of not researching to see if a site's content is unique. The article above points out that you probably can't make any money from a site that is duplicate content. So why do people sell such sites? The answer, of course, is greed. The love of money drives people to prey upon unknowing newbies who are trying to delve into the webmaster game. This site that you are seeing right now cost me $100 from a guy on Digital Point forums. I then spent another $200 buying links and so forth. A few weeks later I curiously ran a search from some text in one of the articles on this site.
What I found was unthinkable. I expected the articles weren't unique, but the exact same template and set up is the same on all these sites. I'm not going to help out this predator by putting a link to those sites. You will have to type in these urls into your browser.
Site One: webmasterpapers.com
Note: I changed the background color to white on this site, deleted the RSS feeds on the home page, and added the changes you see here including the paid for article above. Notice the logo at the top of this site? All he did was use photoshop and changed the text in a layer to suit the new domain name. When will this guy stop selling the exact same everything?
Site Two: helpwebmaster.com
Note: This is the same thing. There are probably dozens of these sites. The guy selling these is shameless. I mean, these domain names are easy to come by, that's worth about $8.00 a year. But pressing copy and paste and then selling a site for $100 bucks to unsuspecting newbies? That's just sad. I was a victim. I hope this helps someone avoid becoming a victim. The best bet is to write your own original content. Even if you are bad writer, originality is supremely better than the same thing over and over.