Does "fewer keywords" == "fewer impressions"?

About six weeks a go I thinned down the number of keywords per page on my website from about 16 to about 8. My reasoning was that a more focused target would improve my page ranking. Two weeks later, I noticed the number of impressions was declining. Until three days ago (when there was a sudden jump back up), the number of impressions had been about 50% of what it was before I made the changes, and my page ranking had improved only slightly, if at all.

Can I get some feed back on this. Is there an optimal number of keywords per page?

Thanks in advance,

Fewer keywords as in your case will be better in the end, but there are bound to be fluctuations when you removed 8 of the keywords. It is not always the number of keywords but the effectiveness of them. If you have done your keyword research correctly then you shouldnt have too many problems…

The number of keywords you use on a page is irrelevant as long as it is well written and you are not stuffing the kewyords in the page title, h1, body, etc. The greater the number of words you use on a page the greater the chance you can pull in long tail traffic. As long as your content is well written, natural sounding and written for a user and not for a search engine you should be fine.

I believe I’ve done a good job of selecting my keywords: keywords that are relevant to my pages and likely to generate impressions.

Will you clarify please? In what way will fewer keywords be better?


It seems to me that you’re in direct disagreement with IPexpress, whose position is that fewer keywords is better. As I understand you, the more keywords I target, the better - as long as I do a good job of it. This actually makes sense to me in terms of generating impressions, but how will this affect my page rankings?

There is not really a direct correlation between rankings and the amount of keywords you use on a page. Rankings depend on many different factors outside of the keywords on a page. Obviously, if you want to rank for something then you want to use that word/phrase and similar ones on the page, and typically when you target a phrase you use it multiple times on a page. There are some people who get caught up in keyword density on a page, they say the more you use the phrase the greater your rankings, but there is no magic formula and when you do this you take the risk of keyword spamming. Plus once you start trying to mention a phrase a certain amount of times on a page you start writing for the search engines and not for users.

I think what IPexpress may have been referring to is targeting multiple topics on a single page. If you are writing about different topics on a single page it can be difficult to rank for all of them since it may confuse the search engines about the page is actually about, but if all of the phrases you use are similar and it is about the same topic then your chances of ranking for more phrases about the topic increase.

I would say that over stuffing the keywords isn’t right from longterm perspective of website’s sustainability. it is always better to use optimum number of keywords and rank for them. This would bring you adequate traffic as well as keep you away from being threatened by any penalties for over stuffing of keywords.

Six weeks is quite a long time for a sudden change to take place.

Did you make any other adjustments to your budgets?

I think you may be right, and that is, in fact, what I had in mind. There’s also the problem of having my own pages competing with each other.

My website is about ‘hand drum repair’. When I first launched my site, each of my pages targeted that particular phrase (among others). I now have my Home page dedicated to that keyword, another page to ‘hand drums’, yet other pages targeting specific hand drums, and so on.

My problem is that I’m addressing a very finite niche, so maximizing my traffic is crucial because, at best, traffic will be very limited. When I see the number of impressions drop by 50% I see a big red flag.

That makes good sense to me. Can you define “the optimum number of keywords”?

I would say that you shouldn’t go beyond 5 keywords per page and density of each keyword should be not more than 2.5 to 3%. Staying around 2 to 2.5% can keep you in safe hands. Hope this helps!

First, I want to thank everyone who contributed to this thread. I’ve gained some good insight on one or two issues I hadn’t given much thought to.

Second, I thought I’d give you an update. Interestingly enough, the impression rate has steadily increased back to its previous rate. A little higher even. I find it interesting because I haven’t done anything to the site that can explain this.

What I think is that my ranking has increased, and the added clout raised the impressions. Does this make sense?


As per the SEO techniques for Meta Tags we can put some 834 characters for Meta Keywords, which is the best optimal solution for getting good visibility and good impressions and obviously with full range of keywords can help in getting good impressions which lead to good traffic.

I’m curious where you get the 834. From my research, most people who claim to know these things cite 250 or 200 - 300.

I wouldn’t worry about the number. :slight_smile: As you probably know, Google no longer makes use of the keywords meta tag at all, and if any of the other search engines do use it, it will be just one very small factor. There’s no point wasting time on it.