Posted by Darren Slatten
What’s up, YOUmoz! Ok, enough small talk. I’ll get right to the point.
I have a 2-page website that I created for the sole purpose of having something to link to from my SEOmoz profile page. My site doesn’t really do anything or provide any useful information, but I use it to experiment on sometimes. Over the past 3 months, I’ve written several YOUmoz posts that include links to my site with the anchor text World’s Greatest SEO. I chose this phrase because it amuses me… plus it has virtually zero search traffic, and therefore, zero competition. In other words, simply using that phrase in my home page’s title tag was enough to get into Google’s top 10. After a couple of my YOUmoz posts linked to it, I easily grabbed the #1 spot in Google.
As you might have guessed, my incoming traffic immediately exploded off the charts and set a new record for bandwidth consumption.
Times were good. But then I got greedy. I added the phrase [worlds greatest seo] to my SEOmoz profile page in an attempt to also conquer the #2 spot in Google.
Unfortunately, my plan backfired as my SEOmoz profile took over the #1 spot and bumped my site to #2. I tried to undo the damage by removing the phrase from my profile page, but it didn’t work. Google still ranked it as #1, claiming that some keywords only appeared in links pointing to the page. So basically, my profile page has enough PageRank to outrank my own site, despite the fact that it didn’t even contain that phrase in the content anymore. In other words, this is what I was looking at:
- PR 0
- Exact phrase used in Title, Description, H1, and paragraph content.
- Exact match anchor text in links from several YOUmoz posts.
- Ranked #2
- PR 4
- Exact phrase not used anywhere on page. Only the words "SEO" and "greatest" appeared on page. "World’s" didn’t appear at all.
- Also had at least one exact match anchor text link from YOUmoz.
- Ranked #1
Now keep in mind that both these pages are mine and I love them both… but my SEOmoz profile is kinda like a stepchild to me, you know? I mean c’mon… I built my site from scratch, using nothing more than a text editor and Photoshop. And now my SEOmoz profile thinks it can just show up and take the #1 spot away from my baby? Ha… not on MY watch, you spoiled little brat!
Anyway… I did what any loving parent would do: I nurtured my own child’s success…by secretly beating my stepchild. How? By keyword-stuffing the living crap out of my SEOmoz profile! Everyone knows that stuffing a page with keywords is bad…so I decided I would TRY to get my profile page penalized for keyword stuffing so that my baby could rise to the top, where it belongs!
Well… the results are in, and I think they’re interesting. Basically, it didn’t work. My SEOmoz profile is still ranked #1, despite the fact that it has a ridiculously-high keyword density.
I’m not going to make any claims or assumptions about whether or not Google penalizes pages with unnatural keyword densities. My only point of writing this post is to share an interesting find. I’ll let everyone draw their own conclusions.
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