This post is a guest post by Tynnisha Hamilton
You know those little meta keyword tags that you work so hard to fill with meaningful words related to your business? Well, according to Matt Cutts, a Google Software Engineer, they’re useless when it comes to Googles organic search results. In fact, Google is ignoring these tags completely when ranking sites in their search results.
The Reason Behind It
Unfortunately, there are a lot of reputable websites who have used the keyword meta tags without abusing it who are being punished by this. But, it’s the spammers, keyword stuffers, and downright money hungry marketers who are to blame for this. What was once a useful tool for driving traffic to your site has become a way for people to spam search engine results.
What many people were doing, was filling this keyword meta tag with unrelated keywords or stealing other websites keywords. Google started catching on to this, and began disregarding this tag as a way to rank websites.
In fact, there were actually lawsuits filed because of this dishonest activity. Smaller websites began using keywords found in high ranking websites in an attempt to get traffic that way. The high ranking websites were becoming frustrated because they were seeing other people benefitting from their hard work.
Is There Any Harm in Using Keyword Meta Tags?
Although these tags are being disregarded by Google, there are still other search engines that use these tags. It is possible that other search engines will follow Google’s example because of the increase in dishonest activity online, but it is hard to say. Currently, we see no harm in using keyword meta tags in your site code except that it may be a waste of time.
Even if you are expecting traffic from search engines other than Google, the keyword meta tag might not even be necessary. There are several sites that are completely ignoring this tag and still ranking high in major search engines such as Yahoo!, Bing, Ask, AOL Search, and more.
Yes, I do know that many so-called “webmasters” say that this tag is crucial to your success and high rank in Google. Well, I’m sure a Google Software Engineer, who specializes in the inner workings of Google search results, knows a little more about what goes on behind the scenes.
Matt Cutts explained the unimportance of keyword meta tags, saying “for our main core web search, whenever we look at the keywords meta tag, we say, ‘You know what, too many people have spammed that too much. We really just don’t use this information AT ALL.’”
Heard enough? Well, now you’re probably wondering how Google places sites, if not by their keyword meta tags.
How Google is Ranking Sites
Rather than looking at the keyword meta tag to place sites, Google is looking at the description meta tag, content, and backlinks. While your competition is spending all of their time writing these keyword tags on each page, you can take advantage of that extra time and build quality content and backlinks for your site.
Although many website owners are taking this as bad news because they put so much time and effort into creating these tags, they should look at the positive aspects of this. Since you now know that Google is no longer at this tag, you can spend more time getting quality links to your site, finding better methods to optimize your site for Google, and improving your site. Your competition will continue stuffing irrelevant keywords into their website code, while they are unknowingly ignored by Google.
Tynnisha Hamilton, creator of Ideas2Websites.com, is dedicated to getting people on the road to owning their own business. People should let their passion drive them, not a boss. Turn your passion into a website, fire your boss, and be in charge of your own life.