Keyword stuffing is an outdated SEO strategy that involves stuffing a website with keywords in the hopes of achieving higher rankings in search engines. The practice dates back to the early days of search engines like Google, which didn’t have as sophisticated algorithms for detecting this type of spammy behavior. Basically, it’s the idea that if 1-3 keywords are good on a page of content, then 50 would be better.
Unfortunately, this is no longer true, and Google, Bing, and even Amazon search engines will no longer promote content that is so stuffed with keywords, it’s looking like a Thanksgiving turkey. Instead, focus on creating great content that will naturally attract readers by appealing to their interests. Here are some more details about keyword stuffing and why you should avoid it.
What is Keyword Stuffing?
Keyword stuffing is the practice of overloading a web page with keywords in an effort to manipulate search engine results. This is done by repeating the same keyword multiple times, using synonyms or other related words and phrases, inserting long lists of keywords in the content, or any other way to inflate the number of times that particular word appears on a page. When you read the content, it no longer feels natural.
You might be surprised to learn that keyword stuffing dates back to the early days of search engines. At that time, search engines were not as sophisticated and could not provide accurate results for all queries. Before you knew it, keyword stuffing became a common practice with SEO experts in an attempt to rank higher on search results.
Unfortunately, this no longer works and can actually hurt your website’s rankings. The reason for this is simple, Google has made major improvements in its algorithms over the last several years and now attempts to identify unnatural language patterns as well as misspelled words.
Why Do People Do It?
Inexperienced entrepreneurs sometimes learn about keywords and get excited about the idea of being on the first page of Google. Instead of learning how to get them organically, or through purchasing ad space, they try to stuff more keywords into their content than is natural. When you are using Google or Amazon keyword optimization, they have some specific parameters around keyword stuffing. It’s best to understand these foundations before creating a site jam-packed with too many of the same words.
Keyword Stuffing Might Help Shortly
Keyword stuffing can temporarily help a site rank, but not for long. It’s not a sustainable strategy. In order to rank well and stay on top, you need to have good content that users want to read. If your content isn’t compelling enough, Google is going to penalize your site and demote it in the SERPs—search engine results pages. Keyword stuffing is an outdated technique that’s more likely to hurt your rankings than help them.
Keyword Loading is Way Easier to Spot
Google and other search engines are more sophisticated in their algorithms. This means that keyword stuffing isn’t nearly as effective as it used to be, as it can be spotted far more easily by search engines.
Keyword stuffing is still a black-hat SEO technique. This means that it’s not really following the rules and can be penalized by search engines. The fact that most of us don’t see keyword stuffing anymore doesn’t mean that it’s not happening; rather, it’s just much harder for webmasters to get away with now than it was before Google got wise about this practice. Additionally, people won’t go back to sites that have a lot of keyword-stuffed content. It feels awkward, bulky, and isn’t helpful to read.
Other Reasons to Avoid Keyword Stuffing
It gives users a bad experience.
When you stuff keywords into your content, it becomes difficult or impossible to read what you’re trying to say because there are so many repetitive words that don’t add anything to your message. This could frustrate readers who may eventually just leave your site altogether because they don’t want to waste time finding out what it is that you want to tell them about your business or product.
It diminishes trust.
Trust is a valuable currency in the online world. Your brand depends on your content to help communicate who you are and what you offer. People need content that makes sense if you ever expect them to buy from you or interact with your content online.