A Big Deal out of Nothing? What Google’s Data tells us about Voucher Code Sites

Steve Paine
Steve Paine
11. September 2019
Steve Paine
Steve Paine
Steve 'Chippy' Paine is the UK country manager for SISTRIX. "I've been working with the Internet for over 30 years. From copper, to Chrome."

Google has announced that its systems are being improved such that they are able to understand when white-label content is used on directories or sub-domains. This isn't a new topic, but the white-label community have become quite vocal as a result of the announcement. In this article we look at the current landscape for hosted voucher codes in the UK. From a Visibility Index perspective, there's clear evidence of change.

Back-story

This is the tweet that sparked a new wave of discussion about the topic of white-label web spaces. Obviously this ‘system’ update has the potential to affect the success of white label sites. There’s also the question of where you draw the line on third party content pages and a raft of technical SEO questions, hence the discussion. Here, however, we’re going to focus on what Google’s search data is telling us, today, about the space.

Popular Keywords

In order to analyse the segment we generated and analysed a list of over 59,000 keywords related to Voucher Codes and Discount Codes in the UK. We found the highest-volume search terms also included brand names and that months / years are also present. An indicator of the earning potential in the sector is that many SERPs also have ads in them.

Here are some of the high-volume keywords.

Using the 153 highest-volume keywords (with a search volume average of over 5000 per month) from the list, we used list analysis features in the SISTRIX Toolbox to find out what domains are most dominant across the SERPs for this keyword set.

Visibility changes (hosts vs paths)

Of the 873 domains found, we selected the top 20 domain that use either a host or a path as the web space. The table below includes the percentage visibility change over the last month.

Domains with a voucher code path or host
DomainVisibility 05-08-2019Visibility 02-09-2019Change (Percent)
discountcode.dailymail.co.uk5.76325.7118-0.89%
https://www.independent.co.uk/vouchercodes/5.47273.3684-38.45%
discountcode.metro.co.uk/0.83650.943712.82%
https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/deals/6.51217.232111.06%
discountcode.mirror.co.uk0.41470.3921-5.45%
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/vouchercodes/1.64750.7672-53.43%
https://www.marieclaire.co.uk/vouchers/0.4160.3213-22.76%
discountcode.theguardian.com0.13410.150412.16%
https://www.nme.com/discount-codes/0.64440.348-46.00%
https://www.standard.co.uk/vouchercodes/0.32420.213-34.30%
discountcode.mumsnet.com0.03010.03278.64%
https://www.thesun.co.uk/vouchercodes/0.18140.057-68.58%
coupons.businessinsider.com2.28573.160838.29%
discountcode.independent.ie0.00790.00835.06%
coupons.cnn.com1.32751.2637-4.81%
https://www.nus.org.uk/en/nus-extra/discounts/0.98590.3068-68.88%
https://www.pcworld.com/couponcodes/0.90240.3301-63.42%
https://discountcode.digitalspy.com0.00730.0036-50.68%
https://www.wired.com/coupons/0.40430.2945-27.16%

Analyses

By looking at these 20 domains we are able to extract the following information:

  • These 20 domains account for nearly half (49%) of the total SERPs coverage for the keyword-set.
  • For most domains in the list, the voucher code space within the domain accounts for a relatively small proportion of the domains’ overall visibility.
  • The average percentage change across the 20 sites over the last month is -21.98%
  • The average change on path-based sites over the last month is: -40.66%
  • The average change on host-based sites over the last month is: 2.2%% (Note: The outlier site in the domain digitalspy.com has been removed as it is too new and too small to be relevant in this calculation)

Amongst the 20 most significant domains in the voucher code space across the last month there’s a clear difference between percentage changes in host-visibility and path-visibility of voucher-code sites. Two domains, however, are worth watching over the longer term.

Example: Host-based voucher codes site

dailymail.co.uk has the most visible dedicated host for voucher codes in the list. The host’s visibility is currently stable and accounts for 18.72% of the visibility of the domain in the UK.

Example: Path-based voucher code site

independent.co.uk has the most visible dedicated path for voucher codes in our list. Over the last month it has lost 38.45% in visibility.

Conclusion

There aren’t many significant path or host-based voucher code sites hosted on domains. However for the domains that we found, it appears that directory-based sites have already been impacted.

Remember that voucher codes are just one of the white-label content types. Classifieds, affiliate shops, sub-companies, partners and other content types might fall under the umbrella.

If you wish to do your own keyword and domain-coverage analysis in the Toolbox, read our article about keyword research and the list analysis features.

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