Discord SEO: Scraping & Ranking For Servers
As an NBA superfan, I’ve come to rely on certain streaming sites to get league-wide access to games.
However- Reddit recently shut down my favorite NBA streaming subreddit r/nbastreams.
r/nbastreams banned but the discord is more convenient. pic.twitter.com/68iWpAIzNT
— Lamar Langston (@lamarlangston) June 25, 2019
I knew they had created a “Discord” server in the event Reddit finally cracked down and banned their subreddit.
I began Googling around for the Discord link and discovered some sites with crazy traffic / organic keyword rankings purely from scraping Discord.
What Is Discord?
According to Wikipedia, “Discord is a proprietary freeware VoIP application and digital distribution platform—designed initially for the video gaming community—that specializes in text, image, video and audio communication between users in a chat channel. Discord runs on Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Linux, and in web browsers.”
What’s The Site?
The site is Disboard– check out some of their crazy rankings:
The site basically lists out Discord servers- all of the ‘chat groups’ you can join.
They describe themselves this way: “DISBOARD is the place where you can list/find Discord servers. Find and join some awesome servers listed here.”
I’m not sure what their affiliation is with Discord and it doesn’t appear that they’re currently running ads. But they are an example of several sites I’ve found that are ‘curating’ official Discord content.
As you can see, it ranks for some pretty big and weird keywords:
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How It Works
At the time of this writing, it looks like DiscordApp.com, the official Discord site, doesn’t index their different servers.
So, for example, one meme Server I found had this description “Memesters is a new social,gaming,meme and sport server mainly focused on bringing together a fun and inviting community.”
If you Google that phrase, you can see that there are a bunch of pages that have that phrase- none of which is DiscordApp.com:
These sites, aside from Reddit, obviously, are scraping Discord and hoping to drive traffic in Google Search by republishing tons of Discord content.
How Do They Make Money?
They run ads- pretty simple.
Here’s one Discord scraper site that does so:
What’s The Big Idea?
The idea here is that there are ways to scrape content and simultaneously provide value.
I get a lot of emails, usually from novice site builders, who want to build a website and their plan is to scrape a lot of duplicate content.
I always advise against this. However, in this example here, you can see a style of site that is scraping, or more politely put, curating content in a helpful way.
They’ve stepped in to fill a need, helping people find the most relevant servers to their interests.
I can’t speak to the technology- how they actually do it, but it is evidently working and Google hasn’t crushed them yet.
There are definitely ways you can implement this- think through different niches and what information is available to curate.
I’m not sure how Discord feels about these ‘republishing’ sites.
I’d definitely be careful to only curate content like this if it’s explicitly public or with the permission of the original site.
I’ve written about creating a local event site before- a lot of those sites republish events. That could work if you’re running an event site for a particular location.
Or, look at Drudge– the news curation site. It’s become one of the biggest websites in the world just curating news, without ‘republishing’ any content.
Another example is this site that’s currently for sale on Flippa- they curate medical news.