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Why You Shouldn’t Use Spun Content

High-quality content is the cornerstone of any website. When laid out correctly, your content will help bring in organic visitors from the search engines and engage prospects once they arrive on your website. Good content offers real value, reads easily, and represents your brand in a positive light. The tone of your content matters just as much as the information it offers. Depending on your niche, it may also be important that you go back regularly to update old posts and information so they’re always current.

Of course, managing high-quality content like this takes a substantial amount of work. It all begins with a content strategy where you sit down and think about who you’re trying to reach and what you want to tell them. Planning out your content in advance is really the first step to making sure your content is effective. However, every step in the publishing process is essential to assuring the content’s final quality.

Even if you fail to plan what you’re going to write or when you’re going to post it, the writing process in and of itself is arguably the most important step in creating something people will read. Unfortunately, this is the part where many people cut corners. While it’s understandable that individuals and even small businesses might not be able to afford the industry standard rate of $0.10/word for writing services, the old adage still very much applies…

“You get what you pay for.”

Maybe they’re attempting to be frugal out of necessity. Or, maybe they’re simply skimping out because they don’t want to foot the bill of a professional (or even an amateur). In any case, when you decide to buy spun content, you are unknowingly setting yourself up for failure. The money you spend on software and the time you invest in it will ultimately go to waste, and here’s why.

What is Spun Content?

Spun content is content pumped out by a “spinner” software. This is software that takes a piece of writing and automatically “spins” it by swapping words. When novice website owners and cheap marketers use it, the hope is that the word swap will be enough to fool plagiarism detectors into thinking that the generated content is brand-new content. Of course, any experienced marketer knows that search engines are far smarter than that.

When you input text into a spinner, it generates what’s known as “Spintax” for you to review. This shows you potential word replacements inside of brackets. For the tool to do its best work, you would ideally read through your article and remove word replacements that didn’t make sense. You can’t get away with not doing that because Spintax replacements often don’t make sense within the context of the sentence. In fact, that’s the biggest weakness of spinner software. It goes word-by-word, ignoring the fact that words have multiple meanings in the English language.

Here’s an example of Spintax: “My { blue | yellow | green } hat is somewhere { over there | there | here }.” This Spintax could generate multiple sentences, like: “My yellow hat is somewhere here.” The software generates the Spintax and then selects replacement words at random from the brackets, thus creating something “new”.

Examples of Spun Content

Some software definitely performs better than others, but none are perfect. One of the best I have come across is WordAI.com, which is a paid monthly service that claims to be powered by AI. It is by no means perfect and still not the quality of a handwritten piece, but it makes fewer mistakes than other software I’ve seen. With that in mind, here’s a look at what some other software will put out.

As an example, I placed the intro paragraph of this article into a free article spinner.

The Original Version:

“High-quality content is the cornerstone of any website. When laid out correctly, your content will help bring in organic visitors from the search engines and engage prospects once they arrive on your website. Good content offers real value, reads easily, and represents your brand in a positive light. The tone of your content matters just as much as the information it offers. Depending on your niche, it may also be important that you go back regularly to update old posts and information so they’re always current.”

The Spun Version:

“Brilliant substance is the foundation of any site. At the point when spread out accurately, your substance will help acquire natural guests from the web search tools and draw in prospects once they touch base on your site. Great substance offers genuine esteem, peruses effectively, and speaks to your image in a positive light. The tone of your substance matters the same amount of as the data it offers. Contingent upon your specialty, it might likewise be vital that you return normally to refresh old posts and data so they’re constantly current.”

The Impact of Using Spun Content

No one in their right mind would read a piece of spun content and actually publish it somewhere. Not unless they first put it through some serious editing process. In fact, for the years that I offered editing on Fiverr, I often had clients send me documents that had clearly been spun. They usually told me the same story: “I hired someone to write this, but it’s un-useable.”

They would speculate that the person they hired was a second-language speaker who lacked writing skills. To me, that clearly wasn’t the case in most of these situations. That’s because most ESL (English as a Second Language) writers actually have a very formal style. They make mistakes, but most of the tecnical rules are fresh in their mind. If anything, they have a hard time writing conversationally.

In these situations, it simply sucked. Not just the writing, which was clearly bad, but also the fact that these nice clients had trusted someone to create content for them and what they got back was simply unacceptable. Most of these clients were not aware that content spinners even existed until I told them of my suspicions. In those cases, I would typically refund the buyer’s editing request and encourage them to go back to where they bought the content from to ask for a refund. Spun content can’t truly be fixed with editing, it requires a complete rewrite.

I always try to lead my clients in the right direction, even if that means refunding them for a service that doesn’t fit their needs. When possible, I’d prefer to save them the back-and-forth altogether, which is why I felt the need to write about this topic today. Now that you have an understanding of what spun content is, here’s a closer look at why I’m so against it.

It Hurts SEO

Low-rate writers might use content spinning and attempt to pass the finish product off as their own. However, even more often, you’ll run into spun content when you hire someone to build backlinks for your website. Spinning content is a “black hat” SEO tactic that Google and other search engines frown upon. That’s because it produces low-quality content that’s valueless to readers and, even more so, it infringes upon the rights of the original content creators.

Even if a spinner is good enough to fool a plagiarism detector by swapping out so many words, that doesn’t make it okay to publish. To avoid copyright disputes, a writer always has to cite sources and add new information to a piece in order to avoid breaching serious plagiarism laws. With all of this in mind, there are multiple ways that spun content can hurt your SEO.

Low-Quality Site Content

The first scenario is you hire someone to write content for your blog and they end up using a spinner to generate posts. Google can pick up on this low-quality jumbled text, penalizing you for not offering good content. If plagiarism or duplicated content is detected, you’ll harm your SEO efforts even more. Oftentimes, if you purchase a pre-made website, you’ll find that the creator has done nothing more than duplicate an outdated template and fill the pages with spun or low-quality content. This makes SEO a challenge right out of the gate.

Low-Quality Link Content

The second scenario is you hire someone to build backlinks to your website. So, they write a blog post linking to your site. Their tactic is to get as many links as possible, but even they know they can’t throw the identical blog post up in hundreds or even thousands of places. Their solution? Use a spinner to generate different versions that they can post in different places.

If the articles aren’t different enough, Google will instantly catch on to what you’re doing and penalize you for using a black hat tactics. And, even if they do happen to slide under Google’s radar at first, black hat groups repeatedly use the same websites to publish their “guest posts” and backlinks. Eventually, Google’s advanced algorithms pickup on it and suddenly your backlinks become penalties.

It’s Bad for Your Brand

As Post Modern Marketer put it: “Nothing of worth is contributed to the Web via article spinning. It’s like a bookstore clogging up its shelves with 30,000 different versions of the same book. No matter how many copies there are, there’s really only one book’s (or blog post’s) worth of information. And it makes it that much more difficult to find other quality sites and blogs on the same topic, because they’re drowned out by all of the nonsense.”

When people come to your website looking for an informative article, they don’t want to be met with a piece that’s difficult to read or poorly edited. These are the rules to follow with all the content you publish, spun or not. Your pieces should always offer additional information, too. Information that a reader can’t find anywhere else. Going the extra mile when producing your content will help you stand out and position yourself as an authority.

Be Smart

To sum up my advice, avoid spun content like the plague. Whether produced by man or machine, low-quality writing is only going to disappoint you (and everyone else). To protect yourself and your investments, play it smart. Always be weary when purchasing something from anyone, be it a writing service, backlinks, or a website. Ask questions, ask for samples, and make sure they have a refund policy. Reading reviews never hurts, either.

Sydney Chamberlain


5,137 reviews

I’ve been writing and editing professionally since 2014. Over the past five years, I have worked with thousands of clients in a variety of industries. In fact, I’ve collected over 5,000 reviews from my happy customers.

I live in the United States, but I travel often. With that said, I’m super easy to find! I’m a native English speaker and always up for a new project. You’ll find me to be extremely communicative, professional, flexible, and fun to work with.




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