Free Code Generator websites are a plage on the internet. There are thousands and thousands of them and the numbers are constantly rising. You can even find app versions of this ‘mini’-scam.
What are free Code Generators?
Free Code Generators are, as you can tell by the name, websites that claim to have a working type of generator. This generator is able to produce free codes for the users, or at least the website providers claim so.
The real goal for the scammer is that the user believes it and ultimately does a survey at the end of the scam. The surveys, however, are also fake and can often be harmful to the user.
To get the user into doing such surveys, they normally show 80% of the “Code” and will blur the rest of it. A pop-up will appear and will tell the user that he, before he can get the rest of the code, needs to do a “human verification”. That means he has to prove that he is not a bot or something similar because otherwise, those ‘bots’ will steal all the free codes. This “human verification” is not the working Captcha method that Google uses. This “human verification” is doing the fake surveys.
Someone that is a bit older and has a minimum amount of experience on the internet knows already “Hey – this is bs and a scam!”. But a child could think differently. A child often doesn’t have much of an experience with scams and also not with tech. So if the site says -you have to verify yourself because of bots- the child could think “This makes sense”.
If a user actually has done a survey nothing will happen. The only thing that will change is the number of the revenue counter of the scammer. The revenue is not high (approx. 0.2-2$ per done survey) but apparently high enough for creating such websites.
They are Everywhere
One could imagine that scammer websites don’t rank well in Google. But for this niche, you just have to think of a gift card that you would like to have and add the word “free” in front of it. So, for example, you want a PSN gift card/code. Just enter “free PSN codes/free PSN gift cards” and you will see something like that.
Those are the results for Google USA. Please take in mind that the results differ from country to country. But you will find this kind of scam without a doubt.
Analysis of the SEO
The title reads “Does ‘bad’ SEO still work?” and that is exactly what those free code generators have. They make crude SEO mistakes in almost every category- but the problem is, it works for them.
Let’s split up the main SEO points and analyse them.
Text (and Design)
One benefit of free code generators is that they usually only have to create text content for one page, the homepage. If they want to rank for a certain keyword, like for free PSN codes or Gift cards, they will have to include those keywords obviously. Every SEO site and expert tells you to include keywords naturally.
How can you naturally include free PSN codes? You just can not. So most o generator site looks like a Wikipedia page for Sony/PlayStation. The text is unnatural, makes no real sense to the user and is just there for the search engine.
On average such sites have a 1.000 words. 100-200 explain to the user that he can get free codes and the rest is just not useful to the user. The design actually varies from horrible to good looking. But almost none of those scammers could find the time to create own pictures. They just copy and paste them.
This is the most surprising. It is understandable if Google still has problems with recognizing bad SEO text, but links is where Google is/should be the best. Free code generators have the worst backlink profiles imaginable.
That is not a surprise if you consider the fact that no one wants to link to a scammer. Not even people who sell posts on their sites. So their link profile is made up of guestbook links, profile links, comment spam links, and so on. No quality, just spam.
You might think now – hey, maybe they are using PBNs. Well no. A real PBN would cost way more than the small revenue that they are making with this scam. And buying links? It actually works, but only for max. 2 weeks. I have seen over 10 sites that came so fast on the google page 1 but left faster and never came back. This is apparently that Google can do very good.
Almost all free code generators want that users share the site or otherwise the user is not allowed to continue with the generating process. I have seen sites that have collected with this method over a 100K of shares.
You see that bad SEO can still work, but maybe it is just because in niches that attract scammers you can only have bad results. No legit site would try to rank for such keywords – it would put it in a “bad neighborhood” and could possibly harm the whole site.