2. Hidden Text and/or Keyword Stuffing
If you hide text or links within your website’s content to help your search ranking, you are essentially deceiving Google and breaking the rules. For example, some black hat SEO techniques that used to be employed regularly were things like:
- Making text the same colour was used to hide lists of keywords
- Putting text behind an image or moving text off screen using CSS
- Setting your font size to 0
- Hiding links by linking with one character (like a comma or a hyphen)
Not only are the above techniques ‘cheating’ in Google’s eyes, but it also provides a negative experience to your user. Pushing a website up the search rankings using these methods will no doubt increase the visibility of irrelevant pages, meaning your user isn’t getting what they really wanted from their search.
Keyword stuffing is another element of SEO that results is significant penalties. For example, if you use keywords unnaturally or simply listing them without including them properly in the prose and without context, you will be penalised.
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We can see in the above text that their chosen keywords have not exactly been used sparingly, thereby making an unnatural sentence that doesn’t read well for both Google and your users. Create content that is informational and engaging – you can get your keywords in their naturally, and if not, maybe research some new potential keywords.