By this time, you surely know that content is the fuel that gets your website going in the search engine results. Not enough content – no good rankings: Google’s spiders simply don’t have enough information to relate your page to any search query.

But the quantity is not nearly as important as the quality of this fuel. Just like you wouldn’t ruin your new car’s engine with low quality gas, you don’t want to wrack your website with poorly written content. That’s why never repeat the most common content mistake of the previous years.

Keyword Density – the Most Dangerous Killer of Quality

Ever since business owners realized that top positions in search results mean more leads. SEO people have been manipulating content to achieve better rankings for their customers’ websites. Back in the days, it was widely believed that a particular density of keywords in the content had the power to make that content rank better.

This concept of keyword density had been a benchmark of how well content was optimized for quite a while. And that’s what was killing its quality and readability: some of the SEO pros recommended a 6-8% keyword density rate, which is a rate that makes writing sound unhuman. For you to get a better idea, by the time you reach this sentence, you would have stumbled across our keyword – say, “content creation” – sixteen times.

The “optimized” content sounded absolutely unnatural, but the idea of getting tons of fresh traffic from Google was so tempting for the website owners, that they were eager to sacrifice the quality. In the end, though, that keyword-stuffed gibberish would just scare the leads away, even if it did get a website to page one.

How Does It Work Now – Keyword Quantity or Quality?

Fortunately for the consumers, people at Google stopped this keyword madness with several powerful search algorithm updates. Some of the keyword-stuffed websites still keep their positions for certain search queries (not too popular ones). But all in all, search engines have made quality their goal. Overly optimized content is seen as that of poor quality, and not only is it useless for getting better rankings. But you can even get penalized and lose your positions because of it.

Content that Makes a Difference is the Key

Today the quality of your content is not define by a low or high keyword density. Even if you don’t overindulge in keyword optimization. There are still other factors to think about, like good grammar or uniqueness. Above all, though, high quality content makes a difference in the readers’ lives: answers their questions, helps solve their problems, or truly entertains. With content like that, you get all the social media shares and exposure you need – and ultimately. The good rankings you have been running after.

How about your website, did you sacrifice content quality for keyword density in the earlier days? What was the outcome? Share your experience in the comments.