Sep 13, 2019 - 10:17 AM
For most companies, this type of tactic is a complete waste of time. Taking advantage of risky short term tactics can be exciting, but it rarely lasts and certainly puts your site at great risk of being permanently banned by Google.
Now if you are an affiliate marketer with tons of accounts and sites to mess around with, then this type of activity might prove fruitful, at least in the short term.
Parasite SEO has been around for a long time. Having worked for two large UGC plays, we certainly saw spammers come in and go crazy with automated content creation tools. The thing is, not only did we combat this type of activity because we didn't want to see it on our network, but we also were put at great risk of having that type of content on our site. Many large UGC sites have been penalized for allowing such content.
The easy way to spot parasite SEO in the past is to simply search for cialis or viagra or whatever the latest & greatest affiliate offerings are on these sites. It's also a good thing to search on your own site to make sure hackers haven't slipped it into your site.
Most large UGC sites already have systems in place to detect parasitic activity, but also have tools to quickly remove it, ban sites, and report them. As Google became more sophisticated in spotting this type of spam, systems evolved and not only can they filter out these automatically, but they'll will actually provide notice to the UGC site when it spots something that looks like parasite SEO.
For example, last year a major bookstore client received notices from Google when it spotted books about sex or making money because it looked out of place. Of course, these were legit books, but it shows what Google is looking for and it also showed me that Google will automatically filter parasitic SEO in the search results.
The article goes on to explain parasitic partnerships (coupons subdomains for big sites), but what it fails to recognize is that subdomains are not authoritative sites and most of the traffic going to them are for big brand coupons with no affiliate programs (so the coupons are actually a deal between the big site and the brand itself). Subfolders are a trickier area because they can use the site authority to rank high and if it becomes a trend, Google will find a way to auto-filter subfolders of certain sites.
A good rule of thumb for any short term tactic that seems to work, is that once it is published (like the article you reference), chances are the window will shrink rapidly as Google will manually punish those sites or subsections.
If parasitic SEO is still attractive to you, I would recommend finding sites not brought up in the article, or sites you could partner with that don't understand SEO, yet have the authority to help you rank. And do so knowing your window is small and any site you do this for will likely be banned some day.