There is a temptation for companies and web designers, once they discover search engine optimisation, to utilise it to the point when it begins to have the opposite to the intended effect.

According to a report by Internet Business (IB) website, there are three distinct areas affected by over-optimisation: poor usability, readability (keyword-heavy text, linkability) keyword-heavy links.

IB described the symptoms of an acute reliance of search engine optimisation (SEO) tools as "obvious – and terrible".

Obsessive attention to providing keywords and links can be to the detriment of the user experience, it noted: "There’s so much focus on delivering keywords and internal links that the webmaster completely forgets about the actual visitor experience."

It warned that Google liked to rank websites on good user experience and taking short cuts by trying to ‘cheat’ the system and not give customers something positive would get the site downgraded anyway.

Blue Collar SEO suggested that content should be high-quality and up-to-date, with good links and considered meta information.

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