The Interflora case and sponsored articles on the Internet

On February 22, a news item focused all the attention on the world of web positioning specialists. Interflora UK had disappeared from Google search results not just for flower-related keywords. Even when entering the brand itself in the search box, the company’s website did not appear among the organic results.

With the uproar that the case had caused among professionals dedicated to the sector, there were many who tried to find out which had been the reasons for such an overwhelming punishment by Google to the enterprise

The first suspicions among the SEO community of the reasons that had led to this penalty by the search engine fell on the post published by bloggers that they had received Interflora products in exchange for their opinions. The fact that some of them commented on Twitter that company officials had asked them to remove the links to their website seemed to confirm this theory.

Some then pointed out that Interflora had prepared the Valentine’s Day campaign by publishing Advertorials or sponsored article in a large number of local UK online newspapers. Along with the disappearance of Interflora from the search results, there had been a drastic drop in the PageRank of the vast majority of the sites of these local newspapers. This coincidence suggested that the aggressive ad campaign with follow links had had a great influence on the penalty.

However, not only paid articles on local news sites and blog posts were the only practices that Interflora had carried out responsible for the situation. Since most of the Inbound links to the company’s website came from sites of dubious quality , and those responsible for SEO may already have received some warning from Google about it.

The speed at which the fall in the rankings occurred and its recovery, just eleven days later after eliminating a large number of inbound links, suggest that the combination of the different SEO actions by Interflora are what they did. that the Google search team decided to intervene as a warning to all those who apply them.

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