What is keyword stuffing and why is it bad for your website

You've just embarked down the path of building a website for your business, and you're trying to optimise your site for search engines. It's tempting to take shortcuts like keyword stuffing, but here's a rundown on why that can be a natural killer for your site.

You’ve just embarked on the path of building a website for your business, and you’re trying to optimise your site for search engines. Of course, it’s tempting to take shortcuts like keyword stuffing, but here’s a rundown on why that can be a natural killer for your site.

What is keyword stuffing?

Keyword Stuffing is when a business or brand stuffs their website with the same target term or terms (e.g. “call business name now”), over and over again, expecting it to increase their rank in search engine.

Google’s Search Central offers more on Irrelevant Keywords here.

Things to look out for:

Here’s a few examples of what to look for when trying to identify keyword stuffing.

  • Repeating words or phrases
  • Adding words out of context
  • Inserting blocks of the same keyword(s)
  • Using keywords that are not relevant to the topic of the page (or website)

Here’s an example of keyword stuffing in a paragraph:

“If you’re looking for the best computer, look no further than here. Contoso Co offers only the best computer you could ever need for your business! It comes with all the latest software that really makes it the best computer for you!”

In this example, the examples of keyword stuffing are in bold. Writing copy that goes overboard in repeating the same terms or phrases can be a real doozy when you’re trying to climb the ranks on Google or any other search engine.

Keyword Density

Keyword Density in Search Engine Optimisation is the percentage of times a keyword or term is used in the copy.

Keyword Density = (Words In Copy) / (Times Keyword Appears)

While there’s no “magic number” for keyword density, it’s a good idea to aim for about 2%. Keywords and phrases should appear naturally in your copy.

Why is Keyword Stuffing Bad?

After reading both the example and explainer above, you should know why keyword stuffing on your website is a bad idea.

It creates a poor experience for users, and it often leads to inferior copy. The goal of your website should be to engage, serve and educate readers with your content. If you’re stuffing your pages with keywords, you’re not doing this. It’s that simple.

Most search engines condemn the use of keyword stuffing, so much so that Google could hit you with a penalty that results in your page being removed from search engine results pages.

Don’t be tempted into trying to game the system – in the long run; it won’t work.