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    Newbie Keyword Density Q?


    I help manage a pretty successful local online marketplace for businesses and consumers to post classified ads. The entire system was built on SEO architecture. Many of our ads can be found at the top of Yahoo and Google while others have not even been indexed by any of the major search engines. I know SEO is a skill best learned by real world experience and that's what brought me here.

    Sometimes, based on need, my customers will pay a little extra and have me write the ad for them. I always use overture to find the keyword selection, and then make sure the title of the ad and the body has a high density of that keyword set, using the Keyword Density Analyzer (http://www.searchengineworld.com/cgi-bin/kwda.cgi) I like to stay in the 9-10% range of keyword density. However I've noticed some sites are well above that range and still constantly rank for those keywords...I thought going above 10% was a bad thing? Anyone have any pointers?
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    of all the onpage factors you could attempt to manipulate, you could do far better to spend your time writing great title, h1 tags, and appealing sales copy for the ads.

    in addition to having to spend time trying to determine and then hit the "magic number" for density, artificial inflation of keyword density just makes your page read weird. users are probably less likely to convert than if you present them with a compelling sales pitch emphasizing the benefits of the services being sold, etc.

    for some background on keyword density (which may influence whether you continue to spend time on it), randfish's post gives some great info:

    http: //forums.seochat.com/t28007/s.html

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    • rmccarley agrees : Absolutely
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    no I understand. Writing relevant ad copy with influencing call to action sales pitches is truly the easy part. I"m also fairly decent at avoiding keyword stuffing that doesn't seem reluctant or overkill in a sense. I was just wondering if going over 10% is truly a bad thing. I mean, if I can squueze more than 10% keyword density on a page, and it flows well along with great information and relevant contant, can I be penalized?
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    You can, but if it flows perfectly naturally it should be fine. It's only when a person reading could "smell" that something was funny - that you were overtargeting a term, that problems might arise.

    If you're IBM for example, writing a press release, maybe the term IBM will have a KWD of 14-18%. Not a problem. It's when people see a naturally written page that's been re-stuffed with terms to try to make it rank that problems arise.

    Remember that the BEST you can possibly do in terms of rankings with KW usage is simply to have the kw term the MOST FREQUENT term of its length on the page - by 1, 2 or 25 instances makes NO DIFFERENCE.
    CEO & Co-founder of SEOmoz

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