The Eternal Outsourcing Content Creation Debate
Many search engine optimization firms outsource content production to India, Pakistan, or the Philippines. SEO Theory points out this strategy may be misguided:
There are very competent writers living and working in India, Pakistan, the Philippines, and other sources of low-cost writing. However, these writers use their native idioms in their articles. For optimal search performance, your idiom (the expressions you use) must match the idiom of your search audience. For example, I write “optimization” because I live in the United States, but were I in the United Kingdom I would be “optimising” instead. Most people realize these differences exist and the search engines compensate for them.
On the Flip Side: Defending Article Writers and Outsourcing Firms from India and Beyond:
First, the price differential one has to pay for Indian outsourcing will make up for the difference in lack of idioms. Alternatively, this does add to workload and time pressures.
Second, not all articles that are outsource are put on a front line website.
Third, at the end of the day, you’re not optimizing for idioms, you are optimizing for keywords.
Fourth, of course a domestic article editor can rectify some of these idiom issues.
Fifth, if you find the right article writer, idioms aren’t an issue. However, as someone with experience this is certainly difficult.
“You Get What You Pay For”: Quality Content Gets Quality Links
I think in an ideal world, however, SEO Theory is on point. Jill Whalen at a Pub Con 2008 presentation recently pointed to the need to hire content experts to create articles (use professionals from niche you are targeting). Certainly, Jill was primarily speaking to the creation of authority on-site articles, but Whalen’s point is pretty on point. A client who I’m informally working with is creating a reading site and hired a former Yale graduate in early childhood education. His site received a PR4 with significant traffic based on the quality of her writing, a well siloed site, and the creation of unique resource link bait.
At the end of the day it comes down to quality, well written content, no matter where you choose to get it from whether that’s the China, Bulgaria, India, or the United States. Knowing the type of content that works online is far more important than your cultural background. Increasingly if Tom Friedman’s flat earth thesis is right, this will gradually change so the developing world will catch up by understanding and applying our cultural idioms. For more guidelines on outsourcing article writing and content creation, please check out rules and guidelines for outsourcing article writing.
Creative Fusion Media provides social media consulting services and ethical and affordable search engine optimization solutions to innovative companies and forward thinking non-profits.