Would you like some keyword stuffing with your holiday turkey?

During part of my daily routine, I commonly browse the web and search for popular keywords for clients and my own organic SEO efforts. Many times my search efforts lead to a directory of sorts. Usually multiple directories.

Today I happened upon the hugely popular website citysearch.com. How I got here is irrelevant to this rant and doesnt really matter anyways. I was looking for my business or competitors to see how the business were listed and during my few moments on the site I came across a page that, had it been on any other lesser known domain, I would have thought was clearly spam for keyword stuffing.

The page in reference was this: http://fortlauderdale.citysearch.com/site_guide Just looking at the page made my head spin and I quickly realized that this page is intended for a robot to view and not a human. A quick word count gave me 67  instances of the term "Fort Lauderdale" in the body of the page, many of them links, H1, H2, and title tags. I instantly thought this was keyword stuffing and auto-generated content created by a robot. A quick swap of the city in the URL (from fortlauderdale to miami) and my hunch was confirmed.

Check out this fine page: http://miami.citysearch.com/site_guide

I am sure I could have kept going with other popular cities but didn't want to waste any more time. If keyword stuffing is so terrible, why does a site as popular as city search have to do it? Why is this page seen by google as popular (with a Page Rank of 5). Maybe keyword stuffing isn't really as bad as everyone makes it out to be.

So this holiday season, don't pass on the stuffing. Try some, you may like it and your website will thank you in the new year.

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