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Avoid Using Tag Clouds On Your Blog – Matt Cutts

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Matt Cutts works for the Search Quality group in Google, specializing in search engine optimization issues.

He is well known in the SEO community for enforcing the Google Webmaster Guidelines and cracking down on link spam. Cutts also advises the public on how to get better website visibility in Google. (via Wikipedia)

He joined Google as a software engineer in January 2000. He is currently the head of Google’s Webspam team.

In this video, Matt Cutts explains whether tag clouds help or hinder SEO? (or whether they have no effect).

A tag cloud or word cloud (or weighted list in visual design) is a visual depiction of user-generated tags, or simply the word content of a site, typically used to describe the content of web sites

What’s your opinion? It really affects or really matters!? Please share it in the comments!

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CEO and Founder of Slashsquare, Indian Blog Network and Web Consulting Media. HBB is a part of Slashsquare Network. I'm a Tech Blogger, Striving Entrepreneur, Atheist, and Proud Indian. Catch me on Facebook and Twitter.

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    39 Comments

    • Avatar

      Narender Chopra

      I don’t knw its true or not but I saw many of Pro Bloggers using Cloud Tags on their Blog.

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      sac875

      I just started using Tumblr and think the tag cloud is a great tool and way to navigate the site…if not the tag cloud what can be used for navigation? I am new to Tumblr so I don't know of any other way to do it and who wants to scroll and scroll and scroll??!!

    • Avatar

      Casey Henry Web Designer

      That is the right blog for anyone who wants to search out out about this topic. You understand so much its almost arduous to argue with you (not that I really would want…HaHa). You undoubtedly put a brand new spin on a topic thats been written about for years. Nice stuff, simply great!

    • Avatar

      inferno19

      This is a good info.
      I also heard somewhere that usage of tag clouds also poses some security risk to our blog.

    • Avatar

      Iphone 4 Cases

      One thing I’ve done on my sites is keep the tags, but converted them to nofollow. This way I have better control of my anchor text, and what Google sees me linking to. I still think its a good idea to have some tags so users can find posts relevant to a certain idea (i.e. tag). So I figure why remove the extra user functionality contributed by tags if you don’t have to? Just fix the seo problems it may be causing by making modifications to it. WordPress has plugins that convert tags to nofollow. Like this guy said though…..too many is not a good idea as it effects your keyword density.

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      Luc J

      Regardless of the SEO effects, I think that tag clouds are useful to your readers to browse through the site.

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      Udegbunam Chukwudi

      The tag clouds on my blog are staying put as I’ve added nofollow to them all and that shouldn’t piss Google off.

      I’ve also added the noindex thing to all tag pages using All In One SEO

    • Avatar

      Uttoran Sen

      what if the tag cloud is set to no-index, the option is available on the all-in-one-seo-plugin… i guess that way it should not bother google or its pagerank…

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      Video Character

      Tag clouds are sometimes confusing and so messy looking, so I prefer the list type for tags.

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      Luqman | Domain name registration

      Thanks for sharing this video, I use tag cloud on one of my blog, I am thinking of removing it after I seen this video.

    • Avatar

      Digital Imagination

      wow…

      i didn’t knew these facts…

      thanks for the article….

    • Avatar

      TechShare

      not knewing it before……. but also not using tags in my theme……..

    • Avatar

      vishnu

      i use tag cloud and they are great! but now 🙁

    • Avatar

      Shubham

      But I have seen many sites making a good use of tags, I have personally tried that tags helps in searching. I believe that tags should be used in a proper way.

    • Avatar

      solar lights

      Ok now I’m not going to use tag clouds anymore. I thought they were good for getting more keywords on the page.

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      chandan

      Well I can not able to see the video due to the low speed of my internet. Well I want to ask one thing to the community that what is the difference between tags and category. Let say we have one post and put in a particular category, should we also put any tag for it also?

    • Avatar

      Simrandeep Singh

      Pradeep you are still using Tag cloud on your blog 😀

      • Avatar

        S.Pradeep Kumar

        😀 Ha ha… waiting for someone to point out buddy! 😀 Now I’ll remove… 😆

        That is one reason, and the another one, I really don’t care about such stuffs & if I remove it.. the sidebar looks lossy! 🙁

        Have to tweak some settings.. 😉

    • Avatar

      Jailbreak Iphone 4

      thanks god i removed the tag cloud , had almost 200 + tag links , even labnol removed it ….

    • Avatar

      Ana @ Targeted Website Traffic

      Other than the fact that I take Google advice seriously – if I want to be ranked in Google that is, there are some more considerations AGAINST tag clouds.

      In my opinion, they dilute visitor’s attention and can potentially contribute to increase of your bounce rate.

      Most visitors prefer clear navigation and since most bloggers use tagging quite freely, tagged pages might not be what they visitors are looking for.

      Ana Hoffman

    • Avatar

      Blogger Templates

      I think that if you add nofollow tags to the tags in the tag cloud then it will not effect your page rank or link juice.

      • Avatar

        Iphone 4 Cases

        You are correct and I actually posted a similar comment and saw yours after I had already commented. One thing it still does effect though is the keyword density, so tread carefully here and keep tags relevant and to a minimum.

    • Avatar

      tej kohli

      OMG i did’nt knew that. I agree with pooja, m gonna remove the tags too

    • Avatar

      Josiah | Windows Phone 7

      Good advise. I don’t use Tag Clouds myself, i do occasionally use the tag system though. You can tell this guy really knows what he’s talking about, very well said.

    • Avatar

      Pooja

      not knewing this…… will remove tag cloud… thanks pradeep……

    • Avatar

      Shiva | Web Magazine

      I think we should make the minimal use of tags. I had also heard somewhere that usage of tag clouds also poses some security risk to our blog.

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      Tech Freak

      Very good video by Matt.. This is the reason why I do not use Tags at all on my site.. So I don’t loose out on any link juice..

    • Avatar

      Paritosh

      For a starter, more than blogging, it becomes important for him/her to take care of “other” stuff. BTW, i always thought tag cloud was helpful to readers be a less or too much crowded.

    • Avatar

      Ching Ya

      Oh, this is a good info. It makes sense that tag clouds can be overdone sometimes. No distinctive purpose but a random of everything. I’m going for categories too. Appreciate the video, Pradeep. Something to bear in mind during blog setup.

    • Avatar

      Technolic

      I was about to use but now i am not gonnna use it.

    • Avatar

      www.ThePankajGupta.com

      Before this video , I was not knowing this fact.. But now knowing the fact of link farming.. Thanks Matt Cutts

      • Avatar

        Vikram

        Interlinking is not bad. If talking bout link farming then it’s harmful only if you have more than 100 “Outgoing-external” links on any page, and that’s a bad SEO, also violates adsense rules.

    • Avatar

      Mani Viswanathan

      He did’nt indicate on removing Tags..its just that we should not use many tags..a few important revelant tags are always good for ur readers if not for a search engine! I have limited the no. of tags after I got this video on youtube from amit

    • Avatar

      Lakhyajyoti

      I am not using tag clouds in my blog.

    • Avatar

      Arijit Das

      I'm Using Tag Clouds for a long time…. Why not now? 🙁

      Google is getting Strict Day by Day!!! ….

    • Avatar

      Raju

      Not surprising really. he makes sense and it’s been a long time since I removed tag clouds.

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