Sunday, 27 February 2011

Search Engine Optimisation Overkill

By Peter Bowen, Director, First One On

Struggling to get to the top of search engines' results knows no limits that some SEO - search engine optimisation firms will go to and yet only too often we hear about websites that have been temporarily or permanently removed from Google’s index because of erroneous SEO practices or the use of ‘black hat’ or dishonest SEO optimisation techniques. Search engines will not tolerate tricks and cheats that some so called SEO practitioners include in their arsenal. And even if search engines do not discover these underhanded attempts right away, your competitors might report you.

Keyword Density or Keyword Stuffing?

Sometimes SEO practitioners go too far in their desire to push their clients' websites to top positions and resort to irrational practices, like keyword stuffing – placing too many keywords into the content text on a webpage. Keyword stuffing is considered as a questionable practice because you are diluting the value and quality of the keyword. Bearing in mind that the recommended keyword density is from 2 to 5% of the content on the page, that is repeating the keyword twice in the first 100 words, anything more than this, say 10% density will begin to look very much like keyword stuffing and it is very likely that it will get noticed by search engines and could face penalties.

"Generally, keyword density in the meta title of the page, the main H1 headings, and the first few paragraphs really has more value", says Peter Bowen, SEO Expert at First One On. Needless to say, that you should be especially careful not to stuff these areas. Generally words that are in bold and/or italic are considered important by search engines but if any occurrence of the target keywords is in bold and italic, this also looks unnatural and in the best case it will not push your page up the rankings.

Doorway Pages and Hidden Text

Another common keyword trick is the use of doorway pages. Before Google introduced the PageRank algorithm, doorways were a common practice and there were times when they were not considered an illegal optimisation. A doorway page is a page that is made especially for the search engines and that has no meaning for humans but is used to get high positions in search engines and to trick users to come to the website.

Very similar to doorway pages was a scam called hidden text. This is text, which is invisible to humans (e.g. the text colour is the same as the page background) but is included in the HTML source of the page, trying to fool search engines that the particular page is keyword-rich. Needless to say, both doorway pages and hidden text can hardly be qualified as optimisation techniques.

Search Engine Optimisation expert Peter Bowen at First One On is considered by many to be a master craftsman when it comes to SEO techniques, and his expertise is sought after far and wide throughout Europe and North America.

1 comment:

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