AI Spam in Blogs: Everything You Must Know

April 11, 2024

Considering March and last 2023 Google Updates, many changes have been made, making a huge impact on almost every website. These sites have experienced a lot of significant ups and downs after the Core Update, which is focused on fighting back the rise of AI spam.

The latest update included many fixes, acknowledging the issues that have been hurting Google’s rankings with spam. Policies have been introduced to improve the search experience, adding systems that tackle such trends.

Among these changes, an improved quality ranking was added to make algorithmic enhancements to ranking systems, ensuring helpful data is always shown first. New spam policies were also implemented to keep low-quality content and expired links away.

Why Is AI Used to Generate Spam Sites?

The rise of chatbots being used as AI to generate spam sites isn’t new. Since the launch of ChatGPT in November 2022, this methodology has gained more and more influence and is used as online content farms trying to attract user clicks.

While the use of AI isn’t potentially harmful, its excess is becoming more commonplace, and most specialists are put on alert due to the overuse of such tools.

One of the main reasons why this is done is very simple: they’re fast and easy to do, and when plastered with advertisements, they generate revenue. When text generation tools are combined with software that generates new sites, it creates masses of domains with text.

Most of the text filled in such pages are advertising slots, serving as real ads over often fake content. These processes are known as feedback loops, where content is created almost with no human control, financed by very complex algorithms that are hard to understand.

While it can be difficult to check if the content is generic or simply bad writing from a simple view, it’s possible to check because the chatbots return certain queries when generating the text.

What’s Considered AI Spam?

AI spam is a sophisticated version of already-known spam. Unlike its standard counterpart, this one uses advanced technology that can be personalized for each user, email, ad, website or target audience. This makes it harder to be recognized as non-human.

One of the main concerns specialists have about it is that AI spam harvests through phishing attempts and that it constantly imposes a constant amount of information on the user.

Previously, most tools were slightly restricted to businesses and used to create templates and basic marketing. Nowadays, anyone can access AI tools, which has led to the rise of content production, commonly managed by these content farms or mills.

These content farms prioritize the production and speed of the content rather than quality, flooding the sites with spam and trying to generate revenue with the lowest expense possible.

How Are Search Engines Dealing with Spam?

Last month, Google launched to public its March Core Update, which was highly focused on dealing with the rise of spam sites. This hurt many sites online, making a huge amount of sites lose a great part of their traffic.

The new spam policies were designed to address practices that have been negatively impacting Google results, as already mentioned. This doesn’t only include spam content abuse but also other issues like expired domains or site reputation abuse.

Backlink Manipulation

Manipulative backlinks, also known as “toxic backlinks”, are one of the main issues that Google fights against when it comes to spam in blogs. This term refers to backlinks that could hurt a site’s ranking based on several markers.

They’re often described by Google spam documentation as links whose focus is solely on manipulating rankings in search results. If not resolved, such penalties can greatly hurt the visibility of a site.

It’s important to note that there’s no specific metric or score that determines whether a backlink is manipulative or spammy. This means that SEO experts must conduct a more specific investigation to determine whether a backlink can be disavowed.

Expired Domains

The method of purchasing expired domains to manipulate search rankings is very well-known. In most cases, this content doesn’t offer value to users, entirely changing the topic and content of the page, expecting to succeed thanks to the previous site’s visibility.

This practice isn’t accidental, and almost every site done through this doesn’t intend visitors to find them in any other way than search engines.

Site Reputation Abuse

When third-party pages are published without the consent of the first-party with the sole purpose of taking advantage of its visibility, it’s known as site reputation abuse. In most cases, this includes sponsored advertising and provides almost no value for users.

This kind of content often wouldn’t confuse the users reading it if they find it naturally by searching the publisher’s site directly or when arriving from Google Search. Doing so from other third-party links is the issue, which can lead to misleading hyperlinks.

Common Types of Spam Blogs Utilize

After addressing what’s considered AI spam, it’s also vital for businesses and specialists to know what forms it can adopt. Three main groups cover most of the Internet: emails, websites and ads.

Link Farms

When a series of blogs link to each other to improve search rankings, it is known as Link Farms or link farming. This method is considered a black-hat SEO strategy, and it goes against Google’s guidelines.

Its tactic is especially popular among many blogs and businesses because building links the natural way can be considered hard or slow in certain niches, such as the gambling, loan and adult industries.

Webmasters must learn to detect and avoid these farm methods because when Google catches a farm, it penalizes not only the link but also the websites it’s linking to. The last Core update made these changes, and many sites were hit.

Keyword Stuffing

The process known as keyword stuffing relates to blogs filling their web pages with keywords or numbers, attempting to manipulate Google’s ranking results. Keywords often appear in groups or out of context.

It’s possible to find them among lists of phone numbers that don’t add substantial value, blocks of text that list cities or regions, or simply repeating words and phrases that sound unnatural.

AI Spam Emails

The opportunities that generative AI provides to spammers are endless. They’ve started to elaborate more advanced ways to send messages, dodging filters easily and even avoiding detection in smarter ways.

Newer email versions are also more personal. They are designed to get your attention and make you click, which can lead to dangerous links or the sharing of personal information in some cases.

This trend of employing generative AI for emails isn’t only used by scammers but also by regular businesses who want to send out personalized and professional newsletters and marketing copies.

There are a few ways to detect and spot issues that could give away if an email was generated by artificial intelligence or not, such as:

  • Language nuances
  • Repetitive phrases
  • Mismatched links
  • Too formal or too casual
  • Requesting personal information for no reason

While some of these points might be harder to detect in some cases, any of them tend to be present in spam emails. Acknowledging this can prevent any company or user from falling into the trap.

Fake AI Websites

Lately, it has become more common to learn about extremely fake news that is also backed up by real-looking images made by AI that quickly go viral, spreading all across the Internet. All of this content is created for AI-driven websites that are fully made of spam.

According to website experts, a site like this can create around 1200 articles a day without human interference, talking about any topic. This can include politics, finance, health, environment and many more.

It’s important to note that all of these articles share something: they’re poorly written, have no quality and often have misleading information.

An easy way to detect these articles is by examining how they approach the user. While they might be saying the correct things, chatbots can replicate the small details a real human writes, making you engage, as well as other information such as:

  • Poorly optimized websites
  • No social media links
  • Excessive keywords scattered around the text
  • Missing contact page or “About us” category
  • Excessive use of stock images

If a site meets most of these points, it means that it was highly likely created entirely by artificial intelligence software.

What Can Be Done to Combat Spam Methods?

Luckily, there are many strategies and ideas that can help businesses succeed without the need to employ spam-related strategies to generate clicks. These methods are fully organic and actually help businesses gain more notoriety in the long term.

Checking AI Content

Using AI chatbots to generate content isn’t entirely bad. It can even be really useful in some cases if done correctly. It can create content quicker than a human, but it’s rarely better than what a person can do.

Machines often plagiarize and reuse content found on the Internet without telling the sources. Taking the time to check the generated text and proofread for errors or inaccuracies is vital to aligning such text with what the company is looking for.

Prioritizing Quality Over Quantity

While the appeal of generating lots of content fast is attractive, the truth is that having less but better content is way better. Too much content easily overwhelms a reader, hurts the website’s integrity and causes them to leave.

Search engines like Google also prioritize a site’s quality. Landing on the top of search results will be easier if articles are well-optimized and written. Hiring an SEO marketing agency can also potentially boost your visibility and enhance your content.

Engage with the Audience

To combat spam in blogs, engaging with the audience is a must. This adds a human touch to every content published and leads to well-needed feedback. It can include comments under an article, surveys or simply social media chats.

Providing these chances for users to leave an opinion or a comment avoids their alienation, increasing engagement and interest. Daily regular feedback also gives insight to the business to know what users are expecting from a company.

Conclusion

Spam in blogs and other websites poses a significant challenge for owners, requiring vigilance and proactive measures to combat its proliferation.

As AI technology continues to advance, specialists must develop strategies for identifying and mitigating spam and improving and making it useful for users.

By staying informed about the latest developments and utilizing a combination of automated tools and manual moderation, bloggers can maintain the integrity of their platforms and provide a more enjoyable experience for their audience.

Keep in mind that while its appeal for gaining visibility is attractive, there’s nothing better than hiring an SEO agency to help you with it. Our specialists from Kala have all the tools and resources you need to increase your revenue, clicks and visibility to crawl to the top.

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