Keyword Density… Seriously?

 
 

I was doing my dose of relaxing and looking for some nice content to read on StumbleUpon, trust me, this is what I do when I want to relax my brain a little but need to stay glued to the PC, I think of it as a break. Anyway, I just stumbled upon a keyword density checker…brain freeze…

Since I use StumbleUpon often, I thought I left these spammy things behind, as you don’t get much repetition on Stumble, and the last time I saw one of these there was in 2009 I think, so the thought crossed my mind, someone must have thumbed it up, maybe so maybe not, I decided to investigate and I was shocked with what I found. Remnants of the old SEO ways still polluting our search quality and getting new SEO minds on the wrong path, bloggers and webmaster beware, old SEO is still out there, and if you are not careful you might just go the wrong road.

I guess this is nothing new, 3 years from now people will still talk about meta tags and keyword density, I get it, but still, take a look at the results and you will understand why I was so stunned.

First I did a run through open site explorer because the page has a PR4, it turned out it has page authority of 72 and almost 1800 domains linking in, one of the links is actually a PR5 Yahoo Directory page (no comment).

Nothing strange there I thought, aged links and what not, it’s perfectly normal, but then I thought about checking the search volume. 10 million results, 40,000 broad searches and over 8,000 exact match, that is when I got a little bit scared.

keyword density search volume

Fired up Google insights and got scared even more, see the graph below and you will understand.

google insights for keyword density

Although its slightly falling down it still amazes me the number of searches it gets and the tenacity of this trend. If you check out suggestions below it says that “keyword density check” and “seo keyword density” are on a breakthrough, and several other searches are on a 400% rise! What got me the most is that in the top 5 countries for this trend are UK and Australia, US is 6th, c’mon guys, read quality SEO sites, there are ton of them out there, why take the words of some huffed up marketer that spams your mail 10 times a day?

rising searches

Again, I know the old school SEO will be there to haunt us in the future as well, but haven’t we evolved quite a bit in just the past year, not to mention all the changes that happened over the last few years and SEO has been one of the most talked about topics among webmasters and even businesses online, so how do things like keyword density checkers and meta tags still get by? And I know that not all of the searches were of intent to use these tools, maybe to brush up or genuinely do research, but even still, these numbers and way too high.

Please share your thoughts on how to educate the public, the non SEO interested public, webmaster, bloggers, about these kind of things. Appeal to all hosting companies to add a mandatory basic SEO course before purchasing a domain and a hosting account; maybe that would help?

Oh, and by the way, “meta tags” have over 300,000 broad searches and 33,000 exact match, so go figure.

Zac is a link building specialist and a seasoned SEO professional. He manages a team of link builders and actively promotes some of Australia's biggest brands. Zac is an active blogger and also maintains Dejan SEO's news and updates section.

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3 Responses to “Keyword Density… Seriously?”

  1. It is how it is… I remember that managers in my previous company asked from content writers to keep in mind keyword density when creating content. That was 2011. 

     
    • Bojan Djordjevic
  2. yeah, I guess most of the in-house digital marketers still tend focus their writing on keywords and keyword density, in fact you just brought to my attention freelancing sites, so I took a look at what is offered on freelancer and oDesk, and a great number of writing projects have keyword density as one of the requirements… so this is one of the things that is keeping it alive

     
    • Zac Grace
  3. Zac,

    I think the thing to remember with your meta tags example, is that phrase is used to cover a lot of different HTML tags, not just the elements. As an example, the meta tags Google help document makes reference to the tag. I’m just thankful that the Google document doesn’t even mention the meta keywords tag at all, even if it is to say “we don’t support it” – because that’d just cause the uninformed to go and invest time in doing it for Yahoo!/Bing.

    Al.

     
    • Alistair Lattimore

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