When in comes to achieving top search engine rankings how large of a role do keyword tags actually play? This is a simple question with no easy answer. Not only does the answer vary depending on which search engine a marketer is targeting, but it also depends upon the changing valuations search engines place on these tags.
At one point in time the keywords tag had an impact on a web site’s position within the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPS). Now the keywords tag has little impact on where a site will appear in the search results. When search engine first started determining the relevancy of a site they placed a larger emphasis on these tags.
Soon every webmaster used these them and oftentimes overused these tags and therefore the search engine placed less importance on them. After all, not every site that adds “SEO Company” into their keywords tag can have a top 10 ranking within the SERPS for the phrase “SEO Company”.
Still there is some value associated with this tag. Type the following into Google, Yahoo, and MSN only without the quotations, “dsrurejjnr“. This is a made up phrase that appears only in the keyword description tags of Real Good Furniture (take a look at the website’s source code). [note, some geocities spammy pages are listing it too]
Now look at the SERPS and notice that only in Yahoo does the site appear number one. It is not even listed on Google or MSN. The takeaway is that while the importance of this tag is minimal, Yahoo still gives it some weight.
Now this test is partially flawed since this information has appeared within the site’s source code for some time now. As one might notice when following the instructions above there are websites that have linked to Real Good Furniture, which have included the made up words on their page.
Therefore links pointing to the site now have some association with the fictitious keyword.
My suggestion is to try this test with your own website. Make up a keywords phrase and add it as the last keyword with the keywords tag of the source code. Wait a couple weeks and then do a search on the major three search engines. Now you will know the true importance the keywords tag plays in SEO.
- Additional Resource: Meta Keywords Tag 101
Brent Yorzinski is the owner of the SEO Company Agilis Marketing. Despite his young age and even younger appearance he has successfully helped hundreds of companies achieve top search rankings on Google, Yahoo, and the other major search engines.