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Google's Matt Cutts: do not stuff your keywords

Keyword stuffing is one of the oldest spamming techniques on the Internet. Many webmasters still use that technique although most search engines can detect it nowadays.

Last week, Google's anti-spam engineer Matt Cutts made fun of a website that used keyword stuffing. Apart from the rather dubious content of the web page, the webmaster included a very long list of related and unrelated keywords in a small text box at the end of the page.

Google doesn't like keyword stuffing

"Keyword stuffing is considered to be an unethical search engine optimization (SEO) technique.

Keyword stuffing occurs when a web page is loaded with keywords in the meta tags or in content. The repetition of words in meta tags may explain why many search engines no longer use these tags." (Wikipedia definition)

Google doesn't like keyword stuffing at all. If Google detects keyword stuffing on a web page, that page will be banned from Google's index. Google's Matt Cutts puts it that way:

"Webmasters are free to do what they want on their own sites, but Google reserves the right to do what we think is best to maintain the relevance of our search results, and that includes taking action on keyword stuffing."

You might use keyword stuffing on your web pages without knowing it

While most keyword stuffing is done intentional, it can also happen that your web pages trigger Google's spam filters although you didn't want to spam.

For example, if you have very similar keywords that are used often on your web pages, this might look like keyword stuffing.

How to avoid unintentional keyword stuffing

If you're unsure if you use a certain keyword too often on a web page then use IBP's optimizer tool. The optimizer tool will analyze your web pages and compare it to the web pages that currently have a top 10 ranking for that keyword.

IBP will tell you in plain English sentences how often you should use your keywords on your web page so that your site can get top 10 rankings. IBP will also tell you in which web page elements you should put the keywords (and how often) so that you get the best results.

Spamming search engines is not a good idea. Although most spam techniques will work for some time, all of them will get your website banned sooner or later. Better focus on ethical search engine optimization methods to get lasting results.

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July 2007 search engine articles