Annette Riley Web Design 

Wednesday Web Tip                            November 20, 2013


Stuff Your Turkey - Not Your Keywords 


In the the early days of the Internet, search engines were not as sophisticated as they are today. Keywords were just about the only the way to get traffic to your website. To game the system and get an edge, keyword stuffing was born.


What is Keyword Stuffing?  


Keyword stuffing is stuffing as many keywords as possible into as many places as you can - meta tags, image alt tags, copy. Unethical tricks included making extra keywords visible to search engines only, but not to people. They did this by using hidden text: making the text the same color as the background or setting the font size to zero.  


Websites are more sophisticated now. And so is Google. Recent changes in their algorithms (which determine website rankings) penalizes such tricks as keyword stuffing and duplicate content. Google changes their algorithms almost daily! So how are you supposed to keep up with all the changes?   


Here are a few keys to using Keywords: 

  • No major search engine pays attention to the keyword meta tag anymore, so don't bother with it. They look in the title meta tag, description meta tag and text in the content.
  • Keywords have become keyword phrases, because that is how people search. 
  • Know what your target audience is typing in the search bar to find what they are looking for and write good copy with them in mind. Instead of repeating the same thing over and over, use synonyms and alternative phrases.     
  • Offer quality and value, and keep user experience in mind above all.
  • Make SEO a PART of your marketing plan. It should not BE your marketing plan. Get the word out in other ways to drive people to your site.

Even Google wishes you would stop obsessing over keywords.  Here is what Matt Cutts, head of Google's Webspam team, has to say:

What is the ideal keyword density of a page?

What is the ideal keyword density of a page?


Have a Happy Thanksgiving! 


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