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Repurposed content is something companies paying for SEO have slowly been taught to fear. Article spinning is the process of rewriting existing articles, or parts of articles, and replacing elements to provide a slightly different perspective on the topic. Not only does this kind of content do literally nothing for a company’s customers, it can negatively impact search ranking. But there’s a line beyond which repurposing should be accepted.

To be clear, articles produced exclusively to try and slip them under the Google filters and thus improve search engine ranking are not worth the cost. Some SEO marketing companies will try and incorporate this tactic within clients’ budgets and other black hat techniques. But worthless articles can harm a company’s online brand, don’t tend to have a big impact on ranking, and can even lead to negative quality scores that hurt that company’s search engine ranking for the targeted keywords. So they are right to be wary of anything that seems “repurposed.”

On the other hand, actually reinterpreting content and information is not only acceptable; it’s a standard in other print worlds like journalism and blogging. Target audiences change, industry niches and companies prefer different voices, facts get updated, and all of a sudden a writer can discuss the same topic from a new angle that not only helps ranking, it also provides useful new information to customers and strengthens the brand.

Companies working with SEO teams should be aware of this distinction. There’s only so much to be said about a specific industry or topic. Your solar electricity installation company’s FAQ won’t be good if it varies too much from the rest of the industry. Link building blogs and offsite content is the same. And in fact, the impact and actual quality of an article can be higher when it is based on effective repurposing.

A lot of learning about a topic comes from understanding and thinking about nuances. The easiest way for one person to access this nuance is to be exposed to a variety of perspectives on the same subject. It’s why The New York Times can afford to run two liberal perspectives on the same economic subject on consecutive days, and why repurposed SEO content might actually be more powerful for a company.

Most SEO content is intended to improve search engine ranking in a few different ways. The best also serves double duty by offering quality information to readers so they will appreciate it and develop positive associations with websites to which that content links.

In other words, companies trying to improve their SEO should be aware of the potentially exploitative, useless recycled content, but also know the difference between that and high-quality, repurposed content that they could benefit from.

Writers repurposing content shouldn’t be something website owners fear. Learn more about the difference between high quality and low quality repurposed content at <>.

One Response to “When Repurposing Content Can Benefit You

    Hi John! You’re article was great! It’s true that just copying someone’s else’s article is bad and can harm your business, but reinterpreting content and adding some new information is useful for readers and the individual writing the content.

    September 29, 2012

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