Poll: Will You Use Meta Keywords Knowing Bing Uses It & Google Doesn't?

Aug 24, 2011 • 8:56 am | comments (13) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under SEO - Search Engine Optimization

meta keywordsA WebmasterWorld thread points to a comment by Bing's Senior Product Manager, Duane Forrester, who said just like Yahoo in the past, Bing does use the meta keywords tag for ranking purposes.

Duane made sure to explain that it won't make a huge difference in rankings. Duane said:

I'll make this statement: meta keywords is a signal. One of roughly a thousand we analyze.

Getting it right is a nice perk for us, but won't rock your world. Abusing meta keywords can hurt you.

We know Google currently does not use it but don't confuse it with the meta description tag which they do use.

That being said, will you spend the time manually or even programmatically adding in meta keywords into your pages, knowing Bing uses them and Google does not?

Take our poll and tell your friends to take our poll:

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

Previous story: Short URLs Now Official Option in Google Maps



08/24/2011 01:52 pm

Why would you not use them if Bing are going to make some use of them ? Surely you won't get penalised by Google for having them ?

Adam Claydon

08/24/2011 02:36 pm

no, but as most traffic is driven by google nowadays surely it is better to spend the time you could be putting into meta keywords into doing something more google-orientated?

Ian Williams

08/24/2011 03:39 pm

I've used competitors' meta keyword tags to understand their priority keywords etc so I currently don't use the tag. European company, the overwhelming majority of our organic search traffic is Google.

Emilio Espinoza Jr

08/24/2011 04:02 pm

If one reviews the Google webmaster guidelines, it specifically states that even though Google does not use the meta keyword tag as a ranking factor it is a good idea to use it because other search engines use that meta tag in their ranking factors, prime example Bing! Even Matt Cutts in some of his videos when explaining keywords tag has mentioned that Google does in fact not use it but one should not ignore it! Emilio

Ben Johnston

08/24/2011 04:21 pm

Personally, I've always used them anyway. Not because I'm expecting some huge ranking boost or anything out of them, just as a way of "categorising" the page when I'm writing the meta and content, kind of like Tags in Wordpress. In my experience, when you're writing meta tags for a huge site (200+ pages), this can be really handy.

Electronic Cigarette

08/24/2011 05:04 pm

agree, always use meta tags, for both Google and Bing~


08/25/2011 04:43 pm

I dunno, I figure it's just a matter of time before Bing either abandons parsing the Meta Keywords tag because of its obvious susceptibility to gaming or admits that it never really factored that data into its relevancy calculations in the first place.

David Brown

08/25/2011 06:03 pm

We only use a max of 3 key-phrases per page. Even if Google doesn't look at them... we do! And by we I mean sometimes there's more than one person working on a project, we all know how to look at code... So having the keyword tag right up at the top there allows anyone (new to the client site for example) to quickly see what's being done on that page and for what key phrases. It takes 3 seconds and Bing does account for a little bit of traffic, so in the long run yeah we'll keep doing it. 


08/26/2011 01:40 am

Though the vast majority of my traffic is from google, and it does not take keywords tag as a fact to decide the rank, i keep having them. After all, no hurt at all. And it may bring some benefit for other search engines.

Douglas Thomas

09/07/2011 07:08 pm

I never understood the "don't use 'em" crowd. They take no time to set up, and, since they're likely not a major signal, can be used intelligently to bolster the keyword for the page without having to worry about the optimal usage of it. For those worried about tipping your hand -- there are better ways to tell what you're up to. Somehow I don't think your site with its top links with anchor text as "new jersey nissans" are selling hookahs to stoned college kids in Pawtucket. (Or maybe I just found someone's racket.) Or, you know, your Title Tags or your content, or your H1s or your description or the keywords you bid highly enough on to have your ads show, or or or. SEO is kind of a open-handed game... Furthermore, the idea that you should not do something solely because Google won't look at it is absurd, even in areas where Google IS the unequivocal top dog (I'm lookin at you, Europe.) While you should serve the highest ROI first, there is a difference between doing something to increase ROI and missing an opportunity.


10/17/2011 09:26 am

Forget about Meta Keywords! They are a waist of time and will not be used to rank your site! Have a read of this http://searchengineland.com/the-meta-keywords-tag-lives-at-bing-why-only-spammers-should-use-it-96874 and then those of you that have voted yes above, should ask to change your vote to a no :)


10/17/2011 11:51 am

Thanks NathanielB! Yes, it *does* seem as though having keyword-festooned Meta Keywords tags could be an easy flag for search engines to give those pages extra scrutiny. I'll add that I, too, have worked with clients whose site search providers made use of the Meta Keyword tag, and now I'm wondering if that got them extra search engine attention they might otherwise have opted to avoid...

Joe Cunningham

05/04/2012 06:01 pm

I agree w/Adam.  Just putting keywords in the meta tag is something anyone can do.  If you want to be truly relevant, do the more difficult task of adding fresh, relevant content. Google has been around the block and is not #1 for nothing.  It seems they would rather use this to scruntinize as said above and notice over use w/o relevancy as potential spam.

blog comments powered by Disqus