Don’t bother filling in the keyword meta tag on your website’s source code anymore. Yahoo’s senior director of search, Cris Pierry, said this week at the SMX east conference that the search engine stopped using it “a few months ago.”
Thanks a lot, Cris. Just two weeks ago, when I wrote about Google ignoring the keyword meta tag, I suggested that it wouldn’t hurt to keep some keywords in there since Yahoo still looked at it. So much for that advice. Sorry, folks.
So, what does this news mean in the grand scheme of SEO? Does this mean keywords aren’t important?
On the contrary! They’re the backbone of getting found online. The “key,” pardon the pun, is to make sure that your keywords and phrases are written in the copy you display to the world.
But don’t stuff them in there. That’s probably the reason why the major search engines have stopped looking at the keyword meta tag. People crammed so many words in there to artificially boost their rankings that they forgot about creating relevant content online that people would want to read!
The bottom line is, create a web page that is relevant to your readers. Sprinkle two or three different keywords and phrases throughout each page. Make the copy compelling and interesting to read.
But don’t forget about meta tags altogether. As I said a couple of weeks ago, the title and description meta tag are still relevant to the search engines. So, put some of your best keywords in there. That will help get you noticed by Google, Yahoo and more importantly, your potential customers.