Barbara: What are we talking about today, Mark?
Mark: I don’t know. What are we doing?
Mark: Like, Thanksgiving stuffing?
Barbara: No, but Thanksgiving stuffing is the best kind of stuffing. We’re talking about keyword stuffing.
Mark: Oh, that type of stuffing. That is not the stuffing we like at all.
Barbara: Nope, keyword stuffing is bad, bad bad. And today, we’re going to talk about why you shouldn’t do it and why you need to be careful when you hire certain companies to do your SEO.
Does Keyword Stuffing Work?
Mark: Alright, so keyword stuffing used to work. This used to be a blackhat technique that SEO companies were able to use years ago to “trick” Google into ranking pages with keywords on them.
Barbara: So basically, what you would do is create a page on your website and put a bunch of keywords into the content so that it ranked for Google. Like Mark said, this used to work back in the day, but Google is a lot smarter now, and this just doesn’t work anymore. They [Google] have said it multiple times on their websites, in podcasts, in articles, that keyword stuffing is not good practice.
What is Considered Keyword Stuffing?
Barbara: Listing phone numbers without substantial value. So, putting a bunch of different phone numbers on your site when you don’t actually have those phone numbers.
Mark: Next is, don’t have blocks of text containing cities or states that you’re trying to rank for.
Barbara: The next thing is repeating the same words or phrases so that it sounds unnatural. The example that they give is:
We sell custom cigar humidors. Our custom cigar humidors are handmade. If you’re thinking of buying a custom cigar humidor, please contact our custom cigar humidor specialists at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mark: Yeah, don’t do that.
Barbara: Way too many words on that.
Does the number of pages or links I have matter for SEO?
Barbara: A lot of people think that they can rank in Google by creating a bunch of pages and a bunch of links for specific keywords. While that used to work before, Google is much more sophisticated now and these techniques just don’t work anymore. You can see in this example all of these different pages for specific keywords. But are people actually searching for these keywords? Probably not. And in this example, there are all of these different location pages to offices that probably don’t actually exist. You can put in really popular cities and try to rank for those keywords, but if you don’t actually have an office in that location, Google can find out and they are not going to rank you.
When hiring an SEO company, be careful
Barbara: We don’t want you to get ripped off, so be very careful about who you hire to do SEO or online marketing. If you have hired somebody that is practicing these old-school techniques, you should fire them immediately because they could actually end up hurting you more than they are helping you.
Mark: Make sure you delete any of these sorts of links if they did add them to your website. That’s really important. Remember, you need to create content for users, not for Google and the search bots. You need to create quality.
Barbara: Quality over quantity. That’s what Google wants and they’ve said it in these articles that they don’t want you to do keyword stuffing. It’s irrelevant and it’s not going to help you at all.
If you’re interested in learning more about SEO, check out our video called SEO for small businesses, where we teach you what you should worry about.