Avoiding the Pitfalls of Keyword Stuffing
Maintaining a strong and steady web presence all comes down to rankability. But can SEO keyword usage ever be overdone? Just how much is too much?
What is Keyword Stuffing?
In short, keyword stuffing is search engine manipulation. Realizing that repetition of words and phrases translated directly to a higher search engine ranking, companies started writing content for search engines, not for people. In the real world, a business would not stay successful long with an advertising message like the following: “If you’re looking for cheap car accident attorney in San Diego, you’ve come to the right place. Our cheap car accident attorneys provide cheap legal representation in San Diego.” But with SEO rankings on the line, lawyers have fully adopted marketing practices for the web that they would never attempt in face-to-face communication.
What are the Dangers of Keyword Stuffing?
It didn’t take long for the bright minds at Google to catch onto these practices, which is why their new policy is quality over quantity. Now GoogleBots are designed to analyze web content for relevancy. Any page that has over 5% keyword usage is immediately flagged for stuffing, which translates to a severe drop in ranking and could lead to the page being removed altogether! New algorithms have been developed to evaluate not just the words themselves but how the words are being used.
What is the Ideal Keyword Balance?
However, to stay relevant on the web, keywords cannot be completely ignored. To keep your customers from feeling like they’re talking to a machine, keep your keyword density to between 2%-5%. Any less than 2% and you run the risking of low rankability, but more than 5% and you risk even more of a drop in Google relevancy. Another way to maintain long–term relevancy is to use synonyms. Google rewards word variety through a new database that helps GoogleBots differentiate between a variety of word meanings.
In the end, content is king. Keyword stuffing, however tempting and helpful in the short-run, will cost you in the long-run. However, well-written, unique SEO content will boost your Google relevancy and your niche authority, which translates to repeat visitors. People will want to read your content because it is written for them and meets their needs. Google will reward you for your efforts, and you will see more conversion from your sales.