Keyword stuffing in 2020

keyword stuffing-visual

1 July 2020

Current situation

The definition of keyword stuffing is the process of stuffing a web page with keywords or numbers in order to improve the position of the website in Google’s search ranking. Often these keywords are in a list or group and this results in an unnatural flow of the text. In short the definition is: frequent use of a keyword in a text, resulting in an unnatural flow.

An example of keyword stuffing is a block of cities and regions where the page wants to be ranked for. Keywords can be hidden by making the text color the same color as the background, make the text size 0 or place the keywords behind an image. When these hidden text are revealed by the ‘scanner’ of Google, this might result in the website being completely removed of the search results.

The percentage you need to know:

Keyword stuffing can be recognized by a too high keyword density. The keyword stuffing limit is something that is often speculated upon. Because Google’s algorithm for the search results is a secret, nobody knows the exact percentage. Through experience and research, like the one from SEMrush, it is assumed that the keyword stuffing percentage is around 0.5 and 3 percent.

Effect on SEO?

In the past, overoptimising of web texts with a keyword was seen as the best SEO strategy. It made sure your site ranked high in the organic search results. You could see your keywords in the URL, content, meta description, title tags, images, page titles and alt tags. Nowadays, keyword stuffing does not work anymore and is not allowed according to the Google guidelines.

Prevent keyword stuffing and a penalty from Google by using both short-and- long tail keywords. Use these keywords appropriately and in the right context. By stuffing your text with keywords in an unnatural manner, it results in a negative user experience and it can be harmful to your ranking. That is why it is better to focus on valuable content, by using content optimisation.