SEO Content Creation
One of the easiest ways to get your website noticed when Google first released its search engine was to do keyword stuffing.
You didn’t need to do anything fancy with your content. All you had to do was add some keywords at the end of each post or page and repeat them multiple times to rise to the top.
As Google’s algorithms got better at recognizing this tactic, content writers started repeating keywords within the body of each page or post instead.
SEO traditionalists still use that method, although the value-based search algorithms don’t reward that writing style.
Mentioning keywords within your content is a crucial way to start building an audience. The difference between then and now is that the targeted words and phrases must appear natural, as if written for regular conversation instead of bot-targeted material.
What Is Keyword Stuffing?
Keyword stuffing involves the constant repetition of the same terms throughout each sentence or paragraph. It is an intentional process that tries to use terminology recognition to gain a better rank on Google.
Here’s an example of this process to review.
“Keyword stuffing is a way to stuff keywords into each sentence to incorporate keyword stuffing as an SEO strategy. When you start keyword stuffing, you’ll see specific keyword stuffing outcomes that can help your brand to grow.”
Google calls content like this “irrelevant.” Your website visitors would likely feel the same way.
If the search engine thinks your content has no value, it won’t receive the higher ranking you want. That means you have less, not more of a chance to get found.
Current High-Quality Content Will Always Be King
Although the “content is king” phrase is overused today, the statement has truth to consider when looking at the topic of keyword stuffing.
If you keep saying the same things repetitively, how much value does that reader get from your content?
Does a book feel more engaging if the characters keep going through the same situation? If you watch a movie, how enjoyable would it be if the characters kept fighting the same battles?
We don’t like repetition when we see it. That’s why keyword stuffing has always been a terrible strategy, even when it worked as a way to get found.
The only way to be successful in today’s SEO environment is to write naturally. These tips can help you achieve that goal.
Tip #1: Avoid Using Grammatically-Incorrect Phrases
This problem frequently appears when someone searches for a specific product, service, or issue within a particular city or region. Many of the phrases that reach the top of the search list follow the same pattern: [topic] + [location].
If you were looking for a new grill to add to your backyard, you might tell Google to search for “Pellet Grills Los Angeles.”
How grammatically-correct is that phrase?
It’s not. Even if you separate the topic from the location, proper grammar requires you to add a comma to the keyword, eliminating the benefit of its inclusion.
You could say, “If you are looking for pellet grills, Los Angeles has numerous stores to offer.”
Some content writers eliminate the comma to get the keyword. Once you do that, you reduce the value of the page or post.
That means neither option is suitable for your SEO needs.
What can you do to change this situation? You add the stop words to the phrase to make it grammatically correct because search engines ignore them.
Your exact keyword could be any of the following and still potentially rank for “pellet grills Los Angeles.”
– Pellet grills in Los Angeles
– Pellet grills for Los Angeles
– Pellet grills at Los Angeles
You cannot add more value terms to the keyword because that changes what you’re trying to say.
“Pellet grills for sale in Los Angeles” is different from “Pellet grills in Los Angeles” because the first option indicates you’re a customer. The second option communicates to Google that you’re performing research.
Tip #2: Assign Primary Keywords to Each Post or Page
Think of your primary keyword as a thesis statement. What content can you build around that word or phrase to add value to your website?
For most websites, the assigned primary keyword should be a phrase that reflects the overall goal of the content.
If you wanted to talk about gardening, your assigned keyword might be “Spring Garden Planting.”
Anything that involves activities reflecting the assigned keyword would add more value to the material.
One of the best ways to find keywords for your content is to use a product like Alexa’s Keyword Difficulty Tool. You can enter terms or topics from your industry or brand, add filters to find close matches, and develop a list from that material to target.
The assigned keywords should rank high for popularity and low for competition to significantly impact your content.
Tip #3: Embrace Synonyms and Long-Tail Keywords
Once you start repeating the same word in a sentence or paragraph, Google’s algorithms may pick out your uploaded content for keyword stuffing.
This issue doesn’t need to be intentional to be problematic. Many writers use the same terms to describe a specific outcome to their readers without realizing what they are doing.
Almost any noun can become repetitive while being grammatically correct, even if it is redundant.
The most famous example is this: “Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.”
This sentence indicates that buffalo (the animal) intimidate others from Buffalo’s city, even though they are also bothered by themselves if they come from the same place.
Something less extreme might look something like this: “You can’t do keyword stuffing with words like because because because won’t make the sentence readable.”
Some common words and phrases that get used in the same sentence of a paragraph frequently are “specific,” “wanted,” and “sales.”
If you try to edit your content manually, these terms may not stick out as being incorrect. Even professional editors miss redundancy issues.
That’s why a tool like Grammarly is worth using. It can find your repetitive words and phrases, highlight them for review, and offer alternatives that add more definition to your work.
Instead of saying “specific” a second time, you can try the word “particular.”
You can take the same approach to your keywords. Instead of focusing on a specific word, use phrases that can help to convey the same information.
Tip #4: Make Your Content More Informative
One of the most popular ways to communicate value to people and algorithms is to create long-form content. When you have a page or post that goes beyond 1,500 words, more clicks can start coming your way.
If your content reaches 3,000 words or more, you’re in the sweet spot for the SEO marketing effort.
Here’s the problem: if your content is boring, 3,000 words of dull information is still worthless.
It helps to go beyond the first click-based metrics to look at how people interact with your content. Is your bounce rate high, indicating that people visit and leave almost immediately?
Do you have a long average stay time because people are reading your content in its entirety?
If you want to avoid keyword stuffing, the best way to approach your content is to make it more informative. The following methods can help you achieve more success in this area.
– Add variety to your content. Break up your writing to have bullet points, number lists, and other visually unique items. Reading large content blocks is challenging, even for graduate-level visitors. Try including some original videos and images to continue with that momentum.
– Keep things casual. Unless you’re writing a formal research paper, the content’s tone should have a personal feeling to it. Each page or post is an opportunity to build relationships with your potential customers. If you can make connections, you will create more loyalty.
– Tell stories. It helps to give people practical examples of what you’re discussing while using a storytelling narrative. When people see the connections you draw from start to finish, the value-based outcomes can generate without any keyword stuffing.
– Offer a surprise. When you do something unusual with your content, the structure creates a “hook” that keeps the reader going. Curiosity drives excitement! Please remember to keep whatever you start with this tip in line with your brand messaging to make it useful.
– Have actionable content. How can someone make their life better after reading your page or post? When you can outline specific actions for people to take, the achievable outcomes reflect the content’s advice.
Tip #5: Review Your Work with SEO Tools
Keyword stuffing doesn’t have a chance to exist when you are using today’s best SEO tools. You can review your work, upgrade your content, or shift items to your optimization strategy using several low- or no-cost methods.
Google uses artificial intelligence with its current algorithms to find and remove poorly created and low-value pages from search results.
By emphasizing SEO tools, you can examine your pages and posts from every conceivable angle. Several excellent choices are available today to help you improve the optimization process.
– SpyFu. This tool provides in-depth features, digital marketing support, and exceptional reporting. Although it is somewhat complicated if you’re first starting the SEO journey, it has about everything you need to accomplish your metrics and goals.
– SEMrush. You’ll receive a simplified process with this tool, making it a little easier for small business owners to achieve some SEO benefits without resorting to alternative tactics of luck to get results.
– Moz. Suppose you want to learn more about keyword stuffing, local optimization, and content best practices. In that case, this tool provides a plethora of resources you can access on free and premium levels.
– KWFinder (Mangools). When you need a keyword research tool, this option does an excellent job of finding alternatives without being overly expensive.
These tools provide an advantage that human eyes don’t offer. They can analyze your pages and posts at the deepest levels to predict how well each one performs.
You can also use Yext or one of its alternatives to provide the local citations needed to enhance the value your site offers.
As you get to know your customer base better, your keyword targets will improve. Your content will begin providing more value, and that means your brand will get stronger.
Tip #6: Quality is Always Better Than Quantity
Writing high-quality content involves more than sitting down in front of Microsoft Word with an idea and a keyboard.
You must have a plan to implement if your goal is to compose valuable content for people to read.
How does Google define value in the quality vs. quantity debate? That answer is not entirely known, but we do understand that the search engine giant wants to answer questions with speed and accuracy.
If you can identify the questions potential customers would ask while searching for your business, you can plan pages or posts that address those concerns.
Adding techniques like authority stacking can enhance those efforts.
It can be challenging to know where to start with this step, so it may help to keep these processes in mind as you get to work.
– Keep track of social media. Watch your social media platforms for mentions. You can also follow cues, trends, and industry topics to see how people interact. These online conversations can become the foundation for your next idea.
– Understand your customer’s needs. There is no way to offer a value proposition if you don’t understand what consumers want from your website.
– Review the competition. Competitive analysis can show you what already works and what doesn’t perform well in your online space. This information lets you know how to improve your communication so that your pages or posts receive the attention they deserve.
– Test your titles and subtitles. Your title is the lure that brings people to your content. The subtitles are the hook that pushes the reader to keep reviewing the information you’ve offered. Although keyword stuffing doesn’t work, you should put your primary keyword in your primary H1 title to ensure everyone understands what you’re talking about in the post.
– Perform the research. Data from 2019 suggests that images are a mandatory component of any content offering. People are more willing to share useful long-form content than short-form pieces because the information supports their expertise. Many readers are likely to share items when you can make a social connection with them.
Once you’ve gone through those steps, your content needs the other SEO efforts that communicate value. It should contain a helpful meta description, links to relevant internal pages, and outbound links to authoritative websites that verify the information you provide.
Keyword Stuffing FAQ
1. What are some great examples of keyword stuffing?
Google gives these examples of keyword stuffing.
– Phone number lists that add no value to the website.
– Text blocks that list locations for where the page attempts to rank.
– Repeating phrases or words so often that it sounds unnatural.
– Repetitive coding or meta descriptions that hide the keywords from visitors, but not from the web crawlers.
2. Why do search engines penalize keyword stuffing?
Google makes approximately 500-600 changes annually to its search algorithms. The goal is to provide value to each person attempting to find specific information. Keyword stuffing doesn’t add value because it only repeats the same data.
The best way to avoid this penalty is to provide unique content that attempts to answer common questions about your information, products, or services.
3. How do crawlers detect keyword-heavy posts?
Crawling is the mechanism that search engines use to find new or updated content. Sometimes referred to as “spiders,” these bots can recognize PDFs, videos, images, content, and more. When websites get searched, the information goes into a comparative index to find uniqueness.
Those comparisons can tell if your content is original or duplicated. It will also register the keyword repetition used for stuffing practices.
Is it 100% accurate? Not necessarily, as some black hat SEO methods are temporarily successful. It continues to get better, which is why the risk isn’t worth the reward.
4. Can keyword-heavy posts be user-friendly?
A keyword-heavy post or page is theoretically possible, but the dynamics of creating that content are incredibly complex. You may also encounter a situation where Google discards the stuffing behavior because the remainder of the ranking factors provides significant value to readers.
Instead of overusing keywords, focus on the information you want to share. Most writers find natural secondary keywords appear naturally with this composition method.
5. Are keywords still useful for SEO?
Keyword placement can help an optimization campaign be successful with reasonable placement strategies. You don’t need constant repetition of the same word or phrase seven times in the same sentence or paragraph.
You want long-tail keywords in your descriptions, subheadings, URL, title, and similar critical structures. It doesn’t need to be found throughout the text body.
6. Will my search rankings improve if I avoid keyword stuffing?
SEO provides zero guarantees. When you provide consistent value to website visitors, it is possible to get your page ranking to rise. Following Google’s general guidelines can help with this process.
Let your content be readable to humans. Create things that people want to share while separating yourself from the competition.
If you optimize for the crawlers or attempt to deceive users with your structure, Google may not display your website as prominently once those efforts get discovered.
How to Solve Keyword Stuffing Problems
The best way to resolve issues with keyword stuffing is to write naturally. Don’t worry about any density ratios, repetitive phrasing, or total words listed in your page or post.
Those items can get fixed later with the best SEO tools out there today, including some free options.
Write authentic content. If you have some expertise that can help others, find ways to share it through your website. When your passion flows through your words, everyone will pick up on the emotion to fuel their efforts to find success.
Keyword stuffing was successful in the late 1990s and early 2000s. It’s not helpful today! Incorporate these ideas into your next page or post to see if you can achieve the optimization benefits you want.
Although there is no way to predict results, your chances get better every time you publish content following the guidelines outlined within this piece.