What Is a Content Mill And Should I Use Them?

David Park2020-09-10


A content mill is an attractive option for business owners who want fast content at an extremely competitive rate. It’s a platform where customers can go to order content for as low as 2 cents per word.

To people new to content marketing and/or SEO, you may be tempted to try out a content mill for your efforts. After all, it’s so cheap you might as well buy a lot of articles and see which of them end up ranking highly on Google.

We are here to tell you to run as fast as you can from these services.

Why Avoid a Content Mill

The content you get from a content mill will always be sub-par. By paying such low writing wages, content mills will only attract amateur writers who have zero passion for their work.

In order to make writing for a content mill worth it, a writer has to crank out an absurd amount of articles per day. To maintain that pace of work, the writer does not have time to create thought-provoking content that will satisfy the Google query. Oftentimes, the writer doesn’t even have time to have fully correct grammar and syntax.

Yes, the content is cheap but what you save in costs upfront you lose in positioning on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).

High-Bounce Rate

One of the most important aspects that Google looks at when ranking your page is whether you fulfill the searchers request. When they come to your article, do they stay and learn, or do they just read the article that is above or under you? If visitors don’t find any value in your content, neither will Google.

In the past decade, there were black hat tricks to cheat your way to the top. It was in these times that low-quality content was thriving and anyone could order “SEO-Optimized” articles for pennies on the dollar.

Those times are long gone.

The only way to rank high is to provide value, and that cannot be done with visitors leaving your site when they see your content.

Lowers Credibility

For most business owners, content is a stepping stone to selling more of your product. By ranking highly for “Online Dog Training Courses”, you ultimately have more prospects learning about your dog training services.

Let’s say, out of some miracle, that the content you received didn’t immediately have the visitor return back to the Search Engine Results Page. Even if they stay on your site, if the message in the article isn’t succinct and persuasive they are not likely to convert into a paying customer.

If you are ranking for a competitive keyword, it is possible that almost every person who sees your article is a potential customer. With all of these valuable leads, would you really feel comfortable posting an article that would convert less than 0.1% of the readers?

By having high-quality content that speaks volumes to your expertise, you increase the likelihood that the reader will trust you and your brand. This in turn will directly increase your revenue and profit while also educating your target market.

Low-Quality Content Wastes Time

Content Mills are dangerous because they are just one small step above “unusably terrible”. The people receiving the content may have the notion that with just a bit of polishing, the content may bring them visitors. This is almost never the case.

What ends up happening is you will:

  • Waste time editing and optimizing the article: These articles will likely have a high amount of “fluff”. Fluff is writing that doesn’t actually achieve anything, and is solely written to increase the word count. Editing fluff can be a difficult and frustrating experience because untrained editors can get stuck reworking a wordy section when it shouldn’t even be there.
  • Waste time getting the article online and live on your blog. These articles rarely come with images or schema, which leaves those time-consuming tasks for you. If this is an article that intersects with previous/future work, you will need to spend time with internal linking and combing through past content you have posted.
  • Waste time every day checking the rankings for that blog and fixing the blog. While this step may waste the least amount of time, it will be the most emotionally taxing. As entrepreneurs, you always want to see progress and/or profits. With low-quality content, you will be greeted with the same abysmal metrics every single day.

Heed the advice here, what you did wrong was the very first step you took. Don't just take our word for it, listen to others who have had terrible experiences with content mills.

Alternatives to Low-Quality Content

It’s clear that low-quality content will produce low-quality results, but is it possible to get content that will rank without breaking the bank? Absolutely.

  1. Self-Writing: If you started a business in your niche, you are likely to have experience and knowledge in that area. Why not try writing the article that you need for your site? You may be surprised to find that you’re a better writer than you think.
  2. Hiring Writers: Cut out the middleman and find a writer that is specialized in your area. You can find writers on several platforms such as: Freelancer, Upwork, and Textbroker.
  3. Arm Yourself With Tools: With both methods above, you can greatly improve and accelerate your writing with the right tools. Here at Jenni, we use advanced AI technology to guide an average writer into an SEO content creator.

Should I Use A Content Mill?

Don’t fall into the trap of dirt-cheap content, and do your research. Several pundits have conducted research on content mills only to find that they produce little to no results. Invest a bit more capital upfront to start scaling your business and getting the organic traffic you need to succeed.

In terms of SEO, content is king, but not all kings are created equal.

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