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I’ll Pass on the Stuffing
On Thanksgiving you’ll never hear me say “I’ll pass on the stuffing.” Come on, who would? And don’t even get me started on the juicy turkey, creamy mashed potatoes, and delicious green bean casserole! Ok, let’s not get off topic here. (We can dream about food later, amiright?) While Thanksgiving stuffing is something I always look forward to, when it comes to creating content for websites, you should ALWAYS pass on the stuffing—keyword stuffing that is.
If you’re not sure what keyword stuffing is or why you should avoid it, we’ve got you covered like gravy on mashed potatoes.
What Are Google’s Thoughts on Keyword Stuffing?
Google defines keyword stuffing as “the practice of loading a webpage with keywords or numbers in an attempt to manipulate a site’s ranking in Google search results.”
No one likes to read a webpage and be bombarded with the same word or phrase over and over. We get it—your blog is about so-and-so! At one time, this was a common SEO tactic to get your page ranked. But it negatively impacts the user experience, which is something Google tries to preserve. This resulted in Google penalties for websites that were stuffing irrelevant keywords into their webpages and blog posts.
Produce Findable Content without Irrelevant Keywords
People pack their content with keywords for one reason—they want to be seen on Google. But there are ways to improve your search engine rankings without being penalized. Instead of listing phone numbers without substantial value, including lists of cities and states you’re trying to rank for, or repeating the same phrase over and over, try the follow techniques to improve your organic search rankings!
Utilize Google My Business and Google+
Every business owner wants their website to be seen on Google. It’s one of the first places people turn to when looking for an HVAC company, a remodeler, or any other business in their area. In turn, Google wants to help these businesses be found, which is why they created Google My Business, a platform that allows business owners to increase their visibility within Google’s search engine results.
In a way, it’s similar to Facebook for Business—but more directly impacts your search engine rankings. It pulls your business info from Google My Business and displays your website URL, phone number, address, etc. at the top of the Google+ page. It also allows you to share posts, similar to a Facebook post.
Use these to post links to different pages on your site that a user may find helpful, whether it’s a service page or a blog post. When you post links on your Google+ page, they will get indexed by Google and can help add authority to your site—and improved authority often results in better rankings on Google.
Optimize Your Title Tags and Meta Descriptions
I know you’ve heard the phrase “don’t judge a book by its cover.” But when it comes to Google, users are forced to judge a website by its title tag and meta description. They’re the first thing you see, and sometimes the only part of a website you’ll ever see. This means that it’s crucial you create unique and helpful title tags and meta descriptions for all of the pages on your site. You need them to be convincing so they generate clicks into your website.
Rules to Follow When Creating Title Tags:
- Don’t include the words “Home” or “Homepage”
- Keep it under 70 characters, but don’t make it too short
- Use primary keywords, but don’t keyword stuff
- Include geographic location if business serves a specific area
- Use more than just the business name
Although title tags impact your Google rank, meta descriptions don’t. But that doesn’t mean they are any less important! While meta descriptions aren’t a ranking factor, they are a conversion factor! A well-written meta description can help improve click-through rate to your website! These snippets of text help give the user an idea of what they can expect on the website if they click that search result. Use your meta description to connect with your target audience and let them know what they’ll get from clicking through on your search result.
Improve Your Webpage’s URL
Keywords are important in your page’s content, including the page’s URL. For instance, if you use a content management system like WordPress for your website, it will automatically fill in a customized URL every time you create a new page or post. However, depending on your settings this may not be something you want! If your business website’s URLs are given a page ID instead of using keywords (i.e. www.exampledomain.com/?page_id=111), it’s not helping you rank. You should personally customize every page’s URL to ensure it includes the primary keywords you are targeting—search engines do look at page URLs when ranking!
Use Internal Links in the Content
Internal linking is a great way to increase your click-through rate to various pages on your site. But this doesn’t mean that you should overload every page with an abundance of links to various pages.
You’re going to need to do a little research to maximize the success of your internal linking. Is your site in Google Webmaster Tools? (It should be!) If so, you can check to see which pages of your sites are linked from other domains. Use this list to see which of your pages or blogs posts are being found as authoritative and valuable, and add internal links within these top linked page! Take advantage of the extra publicity these pages are getting to generate more traffic through your website.
Although internal linking doesn’t add creditability to your website like external linking, it helps users find more of your website’s great content—proving to the user that your business is an authority in its field.
Minimize Keyword Stuffing, Maximize Organic Rankings
Creating content, without over-optimizing for SEO, is crucial to ranking higher on search engine results. By utilizing these tips we’ve provided you should start to see your website’s rankings improve over the next few months. Tackling SEO can be tricky if you don’t know where to start, if that’s the case, call the SEO experts at Blue Corona. We have experience adhering to Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and will help you get more leads and sales from your company website!
Contact us to learn how our content marketing services can benefit your business. And remember, while keyword stuffing is bad, it’s completely fine to fill up on Thanksgiving stuffing. You won’t regret it.
About The Author: Katie is a content marketing specialist at Blue Corona. Outside of content creation and SEO, Katie enjoys stuffing her face with nachos, online shopping, and binge-watching Netflix.
View more blogs by Katie Birkbeck