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burt

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Meta Keywords Are (nearly) Useless.  Repeat:  Meta Keywords Are Useless.

 

It is time for us all to understand that SEO ideas from 10 years ago are no longer relevant.  For the last two years, I've been conducting an experiment:

 

Keyword:   blomdippus

 

A made up, random word - it does not exist in any language or any site, so I added it as a Meta Keyword to a site.  So, let's search for that word.

 

Google

https://www.google.com/search?q=blomdippus

The only sites shown are useless Scraper Sites that you do not want your site involved in.

 

Bing

https://www.bing.com/search?q=blomdippus

Nothing.  The words are changed to search for "blood pus" or something similar

 

Yahoo

https://uk.search.yahoo.com/search?p=blomdippus&ei=UTF-8&nojs=1

Same as Bing

 

AOL

http://search.aol.co.uk/aol/search?q=blomdippus

Nothing

 

Ask

http://uk.ask.com/web?q=blomdippus&qsrc=0&o=312&l=dir&qo=homepageSearchBox

Nothing

 

Conclusion

 

Meta Keywords are (nearly) Useless

 

Caveat

 

There is one search engine that does Meta Keywords, and that is 

 

Baidu

http://www.baidu.com/s?ie=utf-8&f=8&rsv_bp=0&rsv_idx=1&tn=baidu&wd=blomdippus

My site is at the top, along with a useless Scraper site.

 

Questions

 

Why are you wasting your time with Meta Keywords ?

Why does Google show crap Scraper type Sites ?

 

 

What Happens Next 

 

This post will be picked up by some Search Engines and listed under "Blomdippus".  But that has everything to do with this "text" and not with my underlying "meta keywords".


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Because it was there when keywords was important, and taking the effort to remove it guarantee no benefit. Also, trying to convince a site owner to ditch it during an upgrade could be like telling them not to use a schizo slider in the front page. Plus, if I would offer any SEO service that a customer is will to pay...I have been trying to convince a site to re-evaluate the tens and thousands of dollars that it is spending to remove the so call toxic links...well, that's another story...

 

Yes, content is the king!

 

Questions

 

Why are you wasting your time with Meta Keywords ?

Why does Google show crap Scraper type Sites ?

 

 

What Happens Next 

 

This post will be picked up by some Search Engines and listed under "Blomdippus".  But that has everything to do with this "text" and not with my underlying "meta keywords".

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Meta Keywords are (nearly) Useless

They are only useless if they are not used. In Header Tags SEO, they are used to bold the keywords on the page, which is still a viable ranking factor. In a future release, I plan to add code to search the page for the keywords in that tag and flag an error if they are not found. Having just the meta keyword tag by itself, where the keywords are not used on the page, has been an SEO mistake going back years but one I see time and time again.

 

Some SEO people argue that you shouldn't list keywords because it allows your competition to see what you are targeting. That seems silly to me. If a page is optimized correctly, anyone that knows what they are doing would be able to figure out the targets, with or without the tag being present. But even if it does make it easier for the competition, what difference does it make if you rank well?

 

Also, as far as I know, duckduckgo, which is gaining more and more popularity, uses keywords. Searching there for blomdippus returns a number of listings so it appears they are using the tag.

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And within a day...Google and AOL have this thread listed under the keyword.

 

As for duckduckgo - a bunch of useless scraper sites and this thread.   


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Having just the meta keyword tag by itself, where the keywords are not used on the page, has been an SEO mistake going back years but one I see time and time again.

 

If you have the text in the page and in the meta keyword, there is NO WAY to know if Meta Keywords are useful or not...

 

When testing, you test ONE THING at a time.  Otherwise the test is flawed, consequently the results rendered are void.

 


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From my understanding, the focus is moving towards semantics and long tail keywords. Which would take keyword research using moz or Google keyword planner to figure out the best phrases that people are using.

 

I don't have enough seo know how to draw a sound conclusion. I do believe google changed the significance of keywords to force unique content and to discourage plagerism.

 

So maybe it's time to shift seo efforts to employing long tail keywords. Just my thoughts.

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If you have the text in the page and in the meta keyword, there is NO WAY to know if Meta Keywords are useful or not...

 

When testing, you test ONE THING at a time.  Otherwise the test is flawed, consequently the results rendered are void.

 

Yes, you are correct. I was speaking about SEO in general and how the keywords meta tag should be used. Not your method of testing.

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Well, if you sell commodities, their contents would just be product descriptions. So it may not be that easy to get good unique contents; hence, I think good blog or article manger are important...

 

 

From my understanding, the focus is moving towards semantics and long tail keywords. Which would take keyword research using moz or Google keyword planner to figure out the best phrases that people are using.

I don't have enough seo know how to draw a sound conclusion. I do believe google changed the significance of keywords to force unique content and to discourage plagerism.

So maybe it's time to shift seo efforts to employing long tail keywords. Just my thoughts.

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Well, if you sell commodities, their contents would just be product descriptions. So it may not be that easy to get good unique contents; hence, I think good blog or article manger are important...

Google'search algorithms are highly regarded as "sophisticated". With that being said, maybe the keywords are weighted differently between an ecommerce site and a blog. 3 of the largest retailers, walmart, amazon and eBay use keyword meta tags. And we can assume that they have an advantage with silicon valley beyond name recognition.

 

With blogs, articles and information sites maybe content and long tail keywords weigh more than just keywords. Microdata tags may be a means to supplement an ecommerce site's lack of content. With no clear answer from the search engines, who knows?

 

Just my assessment.

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@@discxpress

Google'search algorithms are highly regarded as "sophisticated". With that being said, maybe the keywords are weighted differently between an ecommerce site and a blog. 3 of the largest retailers, walmart, amazon and eBay use keyword meta tags. And we can assume that they have an advantage with silicon valley beyond name recognition.

 

Ah, speculations...especially the part about "sophisticated" Have you ever thought Google may be playing the biggest joke on us? Sophisticated it was then there's no need to roll out Penguin and Panda the way they did. GOD would know if a site did or did not engaged in a paid link scheme, right?

With blogs, articles and information sites maybe content and long tail keywords weigh more than just keywords. Microdata tags may be a means to supplement an ecommerce site's lack of content. With no clear answer from the search engines, who knows?

Hmm....I don't follow...to me...build good contents, attract customer and attract "interactions" on the site are the key to SEO. Think about it, customer interaction is one thing that search engines can keep a tap on, couple with a site's good SEO then it should properly inform the search engine on how the site should be indexed. Yeah, build a good "table of contents" and a good "preface" for the robot to read...lastly, I don't think schema/microdata has anything to do with supplementing an ecommerce site's lack of content...schema/microdata aren't read by human so it will not improve a site's content nor human interaction...

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@​discxpress

 

From Googles own statements, they do not use Meta keywords anymore for search results/rankings in Google.com

 

From:  http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.co.uk/2009/09/google-does-not-use-keywords-meta-tag.html

 

Q: Does Google ever use the "keywords" meta tag in its web search ranking?
A: In a word, no. Google does sell a Google Search Appliance, and that product has the ability to match meta tags, which could include the keywords meta tag. But that's an enterprise search appliance that is completely separate from our main web search. Our web search (the well-known search at Google.com that hundreds of millions of people use each day) disregards keyword metatags completely. They simply don't have any effect in our search ranking at present.
 
Q: Why doesn't Google use the keywords meta tag?
A: About a decade ago, search engines judged pages only on the content of web pages, not any so-called "off-page" factors such as the links pointing to a web page. In those days, keyword meta tags quickly became an area where someone could stuff often-irrelevant keywords without typical visitors ever seeing those keywords. Because the keywords meta tag was so often abused, many years ago Google began disregarding the keywords meta tag.

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@@toyicebear thanks Nick - thats the link I posted a couple of posts ago - but nobody seemed to notice........... also note the date of that article - looks like they havent been using them for several years...........


Now running on a fully modded, Mobile Friendly 2.3.4 Store with the Excellent MTS installed - See my profile for the mods installed ..... So much thanks for all the help given along the way by forum members.

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Now I wonder, is there a statement like that from bing and/or other search engines ?

Or we just don't care about the others ? Oops


KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON

I do not use the responsive bootstrap version since i coded my responsive version earlier, but i have bought every 28d of code package to support burts effort and keep this forum alive (albeit more like on life support).

So if you are still here ? What are you waiting for ?!

 

Find the most frequent unique errors to fix:

grep "PHP" php_error_log.txt | sed "s/^.* PHP/PHP/g" |grep "line" |sort | uniq -c | sort -r > counterrors.txt

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After reading this post I spent a while looking around to see what others were saying on the internet. SEO is a mine field so a bit of research was required on what is best today. The best article I found was this one. I have no links to this site, I just found the text readable and what I was looing for. It was also quite up to date and not years old.

 

http://www.hobo-web.co.uk/definitive-guide-to-using-important-meta-tags/

 

Whilst it seems that meta tag keywords are no longer used by most reputable search engines, there is still a need for on page keywords. Thought I would mention this before everyone stopped writting good descriptive text on the pages.


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This subject is a non issue for me, whether or not the keyword meta tag is relevant or not. I have not used them for years, if i ever did. However, if somebody else wants to use them, for whatever reason, that's their prerogative. The more you become experienced with SEO, the more you see how simple things can be. There are hundreds of ranking factors out there, but most of them carry very little weight individually. Don't expect to rank brilliantly, when you get the keywords meta tag right, but you have a poor page title, poor descriptive text, poor internal linking, and no external links back to the page.

 

How do you optimize a page title, and page content when there are 5+ keywords in the keywords meta tag? Have a look at this page's keyword meta tag, bizarre to expect to rank well for those keywords.

 

I generally don't do anything different for different search engines i.e Google, Bing etc. I find I rank better in Bing for the same search terms than I do in Google, but I put that down to Bing being less competitive with everybody scrambling to please Google.

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From Bing:

 

https://blogs.bing.com/webmaster/2014/10/03/blame-the-meta-keyword-tag/​

 

 

Today, it’s pretty clear the meta keyword tag is dead in terms of SEO value. Sure, it might have value for contextual ad systems or serve as a signal to ‘bots plying the web looking for topics to target, but as far as search goes, that tag flat lined years ago as a booster.​

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Aside from SEO, with HT reloaded you can use the keyword section to capture searches within the site that might otherwise be missed.

 

Example, someone on site using the search box searching for "chairs" may get no results if the product title doesn't use the plural.

 

So adding "chairs" as a keyword to a chair type product picks up all those searches.  That's a big plus.


I am not a professional webmaster or PHP coder by background or training but I will try to help as best I can.

I remember what it was like when I first started with osC. It can be overwhelming.

However, I strongly recommend considering hiring a professional for extensive site modifications, site cleaning, etc.

There are several good pros here on osCommerce. Look around, you'll figure out who they are.

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Aside from SEO, with HT reloaded you can use the keyword section to capture searches within the site that might otherwise be missed.

 

Example, someone on site using the search box searching for "chairs" may get no results if the product title doesn't use the plural.

 

So adding "chairs" as a keyword to a chair type product picks up all those searches.  That's a big plus.I

I was thinking along those lines too, ie the keywords having more of a tagging function


KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON

I do not use the responsive bootstrap version since i coded my responsive version earlier, but i have bought every 28d of code package to support burts effort and keep this forum alive (albeit more like on life support).

So if you are still here ? What are you waiting for ?!

 

Find the most frequent unique errors to fix:

grep "PHP" php_error_log.txt | sed "s/^.* PHP/PHP/g" |grep "line" |sort | uniq -c | sort -r > counterrors.txt

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From Bing:

 

https://blogs.bing.com/webmaster/2014/10/03/blame-the-meta-keyword-tag/​

 

 

Today, it’s pretty clear the meta keyword tag is dead in terms of SEO value. Sure, it might have value for contextual ad systems or serve as a signal to ‘bots plying the web looking for topics to target, but as far as search goes, that tag flat lined years ago as a booster.​

So that settles it for me ... (not that I have any keywords maintained ...)

 

anyone tested meta description ? :D


KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON

I do not use the responsive bootstrap version since i coded my responsive version earlier, but i have bought every 28d of code package to support burts effort and keep this forum alive (albeit more like on life support).

So if you are still here ? What are you waiting for ?!

 

Find the most frequent unique errors to fix:

grep "PHP" php_error_log.txt | sed "s/^.* PHP/PHP/g" |grep "line" |sort | uniq -c | sort -r > counterrors.txt

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As I started this conversation I made it very careful that I only mention "meta keywords".   These are the ones we see all the time like so;  <meta name="keywords" content="blah"

 

We need to ensure not to get this mixed up with "keywords in text" or "keywords as a on-site search engine"...

 

For external SEO it's clear from the link of @@Mort-lemur and the posts/links of @@toyicebear that Meta Keywords for SEO is dead and gone.  My experiments over the last two years confirm it...

 

So, the next time that you (shopowner) are emailed out of the blue by some SEO company saying your meta keywords need updating...you know what to do - print off the email, screw it up and throw it in the Bin.

 

The next time anyone sees advice being given Iin this forum) about Meta Keywords - point the posters at this thread! 


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Hi all,

 

I've just read through this thread  - To be honest it seems a little naive to confirm the death of stated keywords in the head. I fully agree that keywords have a minimal effect as a stand alone SEO factor. However, Google has very much moved into looking at websites in terms of the 'big picture'.

 

Content is declared King - Post articles, write threads, 3rd party reviews, Youtube unboxing's, Facebook likes/follows, Pinterest, Google+ etc etc.

 

That goes for on-page content too - No duplicate articles, No irrelevant drivel that no one needs to see - And for having text on category pages, a big YES (at least 200 words of unique, relevant, information).

 

BUT please don't disregard structure:  Google 100% does take note. Google wants to see a website that's on point and updated anything missing or seen as irrelevant can be a big minus if Google wishes it to be. Check your Google webmaster tools and play the Google game, clean up any issues that it says you have. - Not having any meta Keywords will register as an 'Issue'.   

 

I would advise shop owners to keep updated on the keywords that suit them best and update the meta tags when needed. I am not suggesting that you go and buy any SEO program based on the power of meta keywords. I'm just saying don't discount them. And DEFIANTLY DON'T leave them out of your code!  (I do know no one suggest that you do, just wanted to make it clear.)

 
Search Engines are highly competitive, and it's MUCH easier to move down the rankings than up. So keep your website on point!

 

"So, the next time that you (shopowner) are emailed out of the blue by some SEO company saying your meta keywords need updating...you know what to do - print off the email, screw it up and throw it in the Bin." -  Yeah Right, Ink costs more than petrol! ;)

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So long as your use of meta keywords is honest and not too long, it shouldn't hurt to keep that tag in. By "honest", I mean don't keyword stuff or otherwise use keywords not found in your content. E.g., you sell Nike shoes, so don't put in Puma, Adidas, Keds, etc. keywords unless you actually mention them in your text (perhaps for comparison). If you put in meta keywords not found in your content (or very close variants, such as common misspellings), search engines might penalize you. Some search engines may still use meta keywords to know to give certain text content more weight in rankings, but due to past abuse, don't count on it. Just don't expect SEO miracles from having meta keywords on your page -- ain't gonna happen.

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anyone tested meta description ? :D

 

I don't know how much (if at all) it counts towards search rankings, but it is quite valuable for enticing humans to click on the search link and look at your site. A well-written, short description may not particularly appeal to bots (including search engines), but (if used in the SE results) can give a big boost to the chances of a human clicking through to your site and buying something, rather than if random text from your page is displayed. So, you should certainly put some effort into a good description.

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It's 6 months since I started this thread.  What's changed?  Nothing.  Meta Keywords... 

 

...are at best;

- a waste of time and effort

 

...and at worst;

- harmful as your site gets picked up by loads of crappy scraper sites

 

UNLESS:

You target the Baidu search engine which is so outdated it still uses Meta Keywords.  


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