Posted on July 19, 2012 by
Spread the word...

It looks like I am going to end up with a series of “Dear Matt Cutts” blog posts over the next several days. Try searching for “retirement homes in Attleborough” and you will probably come across the following set of results, see the screenshot below:

Now click on the Anchor.org.. link and you will land on a really interesting, useful and highly engaging landing page, the landing page is one of the most useful out there on the Internet, compelling content and what not, you know, here is a screenshot:

Google, are you kidding me? A blank page that has nothing – ranks? The webpage is not even indexed!

Get .Gov citations and you will rank with a blank page

Obviously, I had to look into this result a little deeper. Looking at the citations for this particular business, I discovered there are 71 in total. There is however one interesting thing about these citations, turns out that 21 of their citations are from .gov.uk websites, see below:

 

So there you have it, you can have a blank page ranked on the first page on the map listings if you have citations from .gov websites.

Pretty straight forward! No need to create compelling content? No need to create an awesome landing page!

Update:

Matt Cutts has acknowledged this on Twitter:

 

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  1. Ryan Jones says:

    I’m going to venture that it’s not because they’re .gov sites but more likely they’re all pagerank 6 or higher sites.

  2. Yousaf.

    Great to see someone has the guts to write about this.

    You may need a post tag named Dear Matt Cutts

    I’ve written about this many times in comments on SEO blogs referring to SERPS results for WordPress keywords because i’m always finding Forum post questions ranking 1,2 3 in Google’s index. Without any answer to the question posted in the forum.

    It’s clear WordPress.org has a strong DA and link profile but its also fact Matt Cutts is more interested in wiping out real content with is nuclear algo updates than doing anything that effects big American owned domains.

  3. [...] read a post about how Google’s Matt Cutts is ranking blank pages top 10 in their [...]

  4. Looks like Matt cleaned this blog post from your server instead of cleaning Google’s data :p
    I’m writing this comment Google’s cache version hoping the comment lands somewhere!

  5. Jonas says:

    Cant find the url in SERP so I guess its been handled.

  6. I just ran the search and it’s still there. From BD it isn’t in the SERP but if you add …&gl=UK in the query, it’s there.

    Update: Haven’t heard anything from Matt & his team but a prominent SEO did say its normal and showed reason why Google did this. Screenshot here: http://bit.ly/NReOg3

  7. [...] o conteúdo é o mais importante, como é que ainda há poucos dias uma página sem conteúdo pode “rankear” nos primeiros lugares para qualquer tipo de pesquisa? A resposta é simples: se tiver links oriundos de sites .gov ou de [...]

  8. [...] o conteúdo é o mais importante, como é que ainda há poucos dias uma página sem conteúdo pode “rankear” nos primeiros lugares para qualquer tipo de pesquisa? A resposta é simples: se tiver links oriundos de sites .gov ou de [...]

  9. Kishore says:

    Yup, It’s still there. I am also waiting for the updates from Mattcutts.

  10. Pho Vu says:

    @Yousaf: Thank you for the interesting blog post. I think the problem is solved. I could not see in the search anymore.

  11. Sparkie says:

    What’s interesting about Google is that despite the algorithmic changes and stringent “anti-spam” measures, they still display a plethora of thin content and spam sites!