With online marketing becoming the norm for all businesses today, Google on the webmasters blog has published a few guidelines on how the businesses can safeguard their websites when reviewing free products they receive from companies.
Google says, Whether you are the company supplying the product or the blogger writing the post, below are a few best practices to ensure that this content is both useful to users and compliant with Google Webmaster Guidelines.
3 points Google mentions on the blog are:
- Use the nofollow tag where appropriate.
- Disclose the relationship.
- Create compelling, unique content.
The nofollow tag should be used because the link that is given in such a review is not an organic one. This review is written because the free product was received. Hence it does not fall in the category of the earned links or genuine links.
Secondly, Users want to know when they’re viewing sponsored content. Also, there are laws in some countries that make disclosure of sponsorship mandatory.
Lastly, Google says, Creating compelling and informative content is something which will add value to the whole post/review. As the write-up should give a lot of information about the product, but should also weigh its pros and cons.
The review should help the user to get a correct idea about the product and help him/her to take a decision. This will also offer a compelling reason for the users to come back for more such reviews.
This kind of an approach will in the long run benefit the user, the blogger and also the company who has offered the free product.