Meta Keywords Tag

Meta Keywords Tag

A hallmark of shady natural search engine optimisation companies – the meta-keywords tag. Companies that waste time and resources on these items waste client’s money – that’s a fact:

<meta name="Keywords" content="s.e.o., search engine optimisation, optimization">

I have one piece of advice with the meta keyword tag, which like the title tag, goes in the head section of your web page, forget about them.

If you are relying on meta-keyword optimisation to rank for terms, your dead in the water. From what I see, Google + Bing ignores meta keywords – or, at least, places no weight in them to rank pages. Yahoo may read them, but really, a search engine optimiser has more important things to worry about than this nonsense.

What about other search engines that use them? Hang on while I submit my site to those 75,000 engines first [sarcasm!]. Yes, ten years ago early search engines liked looking at your meta-keywords. I’ve seen OPs in forums ponder which is the best way to write these tags – with commas, with spaces, limiting to how many characters. Forget about meta-keyword tags – they are a pointless waste of time and bandwidth. Could probably save a rain forest with the bandwidth costs we save if everybody removed their keyword tags.

Tin Foil Hat Time

So you have a new site. You fill your home page meta tags with the 20 keywords you want to rank for – hey, that’s what optimisation is all about, isn’t it? You’ve just told Google by the third line of text what to filter you for. The meta name=”Keywords” was actually originally for words that weren’t actually on the page that would help classify the document.

Sometimes competitors might use the information in your keywords to determine what you are trying to rank for, too….

If everybody removed them and stopped abusing meta keywords, Google would probably start looking at them but that’s the way of things in search engines.

I ignore meta keywords and remove them from pages I work on.

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