[Insight] Anatomy of Google’s Payday Loan algorithm change

Search Engine Land published news of a Google algorithm change for a handful of queries yesterday, mostly the really spammed up ones we all know and love!

  • Payday Loans
  • Viagra
  • Casino

The original post is here: http://searchengineland.com/googles-payday-loan-algorithm-3-0-rolling-now-193954

Watching The Payday Loans Niche

One of the niches I earn a little bit of money in is related to the UK Payday Loan market. I’ve also dabbled in a cheeky bit of Churn & Burn within the niche to boot!

As a result I like to keep a regular eye on Payday Loans in the UK, it’s a good indicator of what might change in the future!

Matt Cutts Meme

So What’s Changed?

I searched for “Payday Loans” this morning (GMT 9:00am) and made a list of noticeable changes:

No 1. Wizzcash.com

Is still no1, been that way for a while now. It’s a highly branded domain with very good backlinks.

No 2. Redwallet.com

Has been an up and coming site for a few weeks now. I’ve charted its rise from Page 14 to Page 2 and now obviously it’s ranking really well!

It’s this domain that could make a good case study for ranking highly after this change!

No 3. PaydayLoans.Money.co.uk

This site has been in the top 10 since the original payday loan update. Google favoured huge comparison sites (And still does) in this niche.

No 4. MoneySavingExpert.com

No real surprise here, although Martin Lewis’s website is ranking much higher than normal this morning, 2 or 3 places perhaps?

No 5. PeachyLoans.co.uk

A powerful brand with a TV advert campaign behind it.

No 5. Wonga.co.uk

A powerful brand with a TV advert campaign behind it.

No 5. QuickQuid.co.uk

A powerful brand with a TV advert campaign behind it.

No 5. Sunny.co.uk

A powerful brand with a TV advert campaign behind it.

Corporate Branding

I Guess You Can Spot The Correlation?

The obvious point to pick up right now for anyone in the Payday Loan industry is that brand (And its Budget) means everything right now.

The closest “Non national brand” websites are in at number 14 / 15.

  • London Mutual Credit Union
  • TideUOver.com

What About RedWallet.com?

The most interesting website, redwallet.com, have been quietly rising through the ranks for a couple of weeks now.

Redwallet Ahrefs Profile

If you look at the ahrefs screen grab above it doesn’t show any recent link building efforts at all, weird!

So Is Branding More Important Than Links In Payday Loans?

It’s looking quite like it, for a website to rise to no2 without any new link building is enough to raise an eyebrow plus the fact every top 10 spot is now occupied by either a huge comparison website or national brand.

One thing is for certain, absolutely no churn and burn sites are ranking for Payday Loans.

The problem now is “How the hell do new companies compete when Google seems to be hugely bias in favour of large brands”.

I can feel a full case study brewing in the office somewhere, can I rank a website with nothing but branding / social? Well, it’s something this SEO Website is all about, Read this Article for more info!

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