Having thin content can quickly trigger a Google penalty for your website. This warning has become increasingly common since Google rolled out Core Web Vitals as a ranking factor. The world’s leading search engine actively advocates for a positive user experience and promotes sites that align with this goal. Valueless content isn’t going to cut it.
In this guide, we’ll examine what Google classifies as thin content so that you can avoid future ranking issues.
How Google Defines Thin Content
Thin content refers to landing pages that have little-to-no valuable information on them. Every search on Google has search intent behind it. The user went onto Google to learn something, buy something, find something, etc. Google showcases search results that fulfill search intent, and thin content does not do that.
If your website content is unique, well-written, informative, and user-focused, it should not receive a thin content penalty.
Quality over Quantity – Long Webpages Can Be Thin Content
Thin content can be anything from a two-sentence webpage to a 2,000-word bot-generated blog post. The quality of the content is far more important than the length. Shorter pages may be slightly more at risk of receiving a thin content penalty, but not if they sufficiently address a user’s search intent.
A landing page can be a static webpage on your site or a blog post. Any page on your website could receive a thin content warning, as could the site in its totality. This is why it is extremely important to put thoughtful content on every published page. The content should be long enough to address the subject at hand but not so long that it’s considered “fluff.”
Learn more: How Long Should a Blog Post Be?
Keyword Stuffing and Duplicate Content
Keyword stuffing was a popular practice in the early days of SEO – before Google had a polished ranking algorithm. The idea was to get a keyword on a page as much as possible so Google would pick up on it for search results. This practice is no longer acceptable, and Google is quick to flag sites with unnecessary keyword inserts. The flag may lead to a spam/thin content warning or a similar violation notice.
Duplicate content may also be labeled “thin content.” Users will quickly leave a site if each page they visit has the same information. The duplicated content lacks substance, which goes against Google’s quality standards.
What Happens If You Get a Thin Content Penalty
A thin content penalty may remove select pages from search results pages or suppress rankings for your site. Do not ignore the penalty, even if the effects seem minor. What starts as a warning affecting a few pages may escalate into Google blocking your entire website from search results. The sooner you fill out the thin content, the less it will impact your digital marketing success.
How to Improve Thin Content on Your Website
Here are a few strategies to rectify thin content:
- Analyze every page of your website. That’s right – all of them. Look for duplicate pages, empty pages, old template pages, and anything else that lacks quality.
- Remove unnecessary pages on the site. Verify traffic levels before removing a page. If a high-traffic landing page has thin content, consider rewriting instead of deleting it.
- Add valuable information to thin content. Strategically include information that is relevant to the page topic and the user’s search intent. Do not add words simply to make the page feel full.
- Create interlinking pages that encourage users to stay on your website. Once again, these links should be intentional and well thought-out.
- Invest in website repair from a seasoned digital marketing company. The SEO experts can assess each page for you and create a foundation for long-term lead generation.
- Make sure your paid ads connect to appropriate landing pages. This boosts your quality score, which can improve ranking and reduce ad costs.
- Only publish new content that fits Google’s standards. Never publish a page “just because.” Be thoughtful with every piece of content.
Detroit Internet Marketing specializes in building purposeful, high-quality, keyword-enriched website content. We can repair existing pages on your site and create new digital marketing content that’s 100% unique. Contact (248) 234-4830 to schedule your free website repair consultation.