Keyphrase Problem Solving

Articles with excessive keywords or keyphrases deliver a poor user experience, destroys your & our credibility and therefore, it’s something in conflict with our goals.

Until today our Editors had a different way of visualizing articles that were submitted with excessive keywords & excessive keyphrases.

If you had an article rejected for excessive keywords or keyphrases, when you clicked on VIEW to see what the problem is, we were only showing you the excessive keywords that tripped our excessive trigger… when most likely it was an excessive keyphrase that resulted in the rejection.

Effective last night, all accounts now are able to see what we see when we reject an article for excessive keyword/keyphrase usage.

If you are one of the 4,750 members who has an article flagged for excessive kw’s/keyphrases, log into your account and click on VIEW to see what we see. To fix and get your article approved, please lower your excessive keywords to less than 2 per 100 words.

Any questions?


setingsetiawan writes:

thanks for this article.. it helping me much to optimizing my blog!

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 8:04 AM


Britt Malka writes:

Very nice idea.

I haven’t had an article rejected for excessive keywords/keyphrase usage, but it would be nice, if you could provide a check tool, like the spell checker, so we could check our own articles and correct them before submitting them.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 8:28 AM




Use FireFox as it has built-in spell check.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 8:39 AM


Vince Samios writes:

I’ve had a problem recently where a single word has been flagged as being used excessively. This change show me what your reviewers see and potentially explains why the article isn’t being approved.

If you’ve read the book Blink by Malcolm Gladwell you will know about the idea of too much information clouding judgement. This is what I feel might be happening in this case since the placement of that single word is entirely appropriate in ever instance, however when highlighting every instance of that word the screen lights up.

I will review the article again and see if I can cut down on how often the word appears, but I do so bitterly, feeling that the quality of my article is reduced by having to do so.

Great update!

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 8:42 AM


Britt Malka writes:

I use Firefox, but I use Whitesmoke for spell checking.

What I meant was a keyword checker. That would be nice.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 8:46 AM




We have no plans to give a keyword checker because we do not want to encourage anyone to write keyword dense articles.

It’s unnatural and takes the focus off the end-reader of the article…therefore, not in alignment with our goals.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 8:51 AM


Britt Malka writes:

I guess most people put keywords into their articles, both because the article is written around that subject and because of SEO reasons.

A lot of the idea behind submitting an article to EzineArticles is to get traffic on a keyword or keyphrase.

Some people might over do it and put plenty of keywords in an unnatural way into their articles, but providing them with a keyword checker would tell them, already before submitting the article, that there were a serious problem they had to correct.

So in my opinion such a keyword checker wouldn’t encourage people to write keyword dense articles, but would hinder it.

When I write an article, I don’t put in keywords on purpose, except of course in the title, and then in the first part and sometimes also in the last. But I might by mistake do it once or twice too many, like I guess it could happen to many others. Therefore, I would appreciate it if I got a notion saying “Thou Shalt Not Put In So Many Keywords” or something like that, so I had a chance to edit my article and correct the errors.

But do you mean that some would misuse such a tool to put in exactly the allowed number of keywords?

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 9:01 AM




Right! Bingo. Giving this tool would be encouraging keyword abuse for keyword sake.

SEO writers are not our target market nor are they ideal members for us.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 9:08 AM


Vince Samios writes:


You say that SEO writers are not your ideal members.

True – Article quality of SEO writers is a lot lower

but conversely

False – SEO writers are probably responsible for the vast majority of EzineArticles traffic and an even higher proportion of EzineArticles revenue, since SEO writers target keywords with traffic and generally also focus on markets with a higher CPC = EzineArticles earnings.

My 2c

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 9:15 AM



Why are writers so keyed over the keywords? One lock has a maximum of three keys. More the keys more the risks. You can say risk of rejection here. Isn’t this good enough lesson?

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 10:26 AM


11 writes:

its really a good article about kewords and really it shows the reallity about a good article with keywords.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 11:17 AM


Priya Shah writes:

As always, a very welcome step towards improving the quality of syndicated content. Even though your new update just created more work for me, I’m with you on this. :)

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 1:11 PM




This isn’t suppose to create more work for you. :)

This is suppose to create LESS frustration and less work once an article DOES get rejected for excessive keywords.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 1:59 PM


Lance Winslow writes:

This is good, because it is very easy to accidentally trip the “keyword” rules without realizing it. Sometimes industries have “buzzwords” and that is what the sector uses, it’s very easy to use them, and sometimes there really is now descriptive alternative. It happens to me every once in a while, I’d once per 75-150 articles or so. It’s quite aggravating to get rejected articles, and it really pisses off the authors. Amazingly enough, I do not believe that the EzineArticles staff realizes just how angry the article writers get.

I think this is the single most devisive issue that is hurting the relationship between authors and EzineArticles actually.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 2:50 PM


King J. For writes:

I STRONGLY agree with Vince Samios and Lance Winslow – I feel really frustrated having articles rejected because of a single keyphrase used “excessively”. If this is just focused on keywords, then it’s understandable, but a single keyphrase being excessively? What SEO purpose will that be for?

The truth is that when one is writing about a particular subject, say “Breast Cancer”, it’s extremely difficult and frustrating to avoid mentioning “cancer” every now and then. The times I tried to correct the articles that had such problems were very frustrating times for me.

Also, Britt is right – if you don’t have an internal checking tool within the article submission area that we can use ourselves to check and be sure an article doesn’t have the so-called “excessive” keyphrase use, then this will surely slow down the article approval process and lead to thousands of more problem articles, probably DAILY!

Lastly, as Lance Winslow has RIGHTLY observed “I think this is the single most divisive issue that is hurting the relationship between authors and EzineArticles actually”.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 9:10 PM


Priya Shah writes:

King J. For, we use the keyword count check in MS Word – it tells us exactly how many times a keyword/phrase is repeated.

And yes, Chris, we do keep a check on keyphrases. So far, we’ve met your standards, and I hope we continue to do so.

Comment provided May 7, 2009 at 10:13 PM


Zamlan writes:

Hi admin,

Is there any limitation of keyword percentage in an articles? How many percentage of keyword density is considered as excessive?

Comment provided May 8, 2009 at 7:58 AM




I’ve already said the answer :)…
So here it is again:

1% is the guideline.

2% is the rule for what where we consider “excessive keyword or keyphrase stuffing begins”

Comment provided May 8, 2009 at 8:19 AM


Vince Samios writes:

To be brutally honest, 2% keyword density isn’t sufficient for a specialist article on a particular topic.

There needs to be some leniency there somewhere.

In terms of SEO – keyword density doesn’t really mean squat anymore. Further, if the excessive keywords aren’t also the anchor text of the link contained within the article, they are most likely (I was tempted to say obviously, but there are still some morons in the world) used naturally and imposing a strict 2% limit hinders the quality of the article.

I had an article flagged for excessive use of the word “home” – I was baffled… changed a few “home” to “house” and the problem was solved, but the artistic value of the article was reduced since “house” is a lot more clinical and a lot less cosy than “home”

Comment provided May 8, 2009 at 8:33 AM



If your goal is to write highly keyword dense articles, then we’re out of alignment.

Unfortunately, and the members I feel bad for, are the non-SEO-writers who accidentally write too dense instead of intending to game our system.

It’s because of the members who GAME us continuously with keyword loaded articles that don’t make sense that all members must deal with our 2% hard rule.

If we didn’t have a few thousand members trying to game us with their keyword junk articles, we never would have needed to create this rule.

Soon… we won’t even allow articles to be submitted to us that exceed 2%. If that means we lose a percentage of members, it’s a risk we’ve already put a lot of serious thought into…and are ok with the loss.

One point of clarity: I’m not going to disagree with you Vince that the 2% rule may lead to a lower quality article when it comes to evaluating the 2% on keywords alone; Our real issue are the articles with 2% or higher keyword dense phrases because that shows a blatant attempt to game the system. How do we know they are trying to game the system? Because the typical 3-5 word keyword phrase is included in the article title, body, resource box and anchored text link. It’s so blatant that it jumps right out and screams, “I didn’t care about my reader and only wanted to game the system to get traffic at any cost including loss of my personal credibility.”

Comment provided May 8, 2009 at 8:48 AM


King J. For writes:

You are right, Chris, I agree with you when you said “Our real issue are the articles with 2% or higher keyword dense phrases because that shows a blatant attempt to game the system. How do we know they are trying to game the system? Because the typical 3-5 word keyword phrase is included in the article title, body, resource box and anchored text link.”

But my major problem is when the editors reject my articles because a certain SINGLE keyphrase was excessively used. I write lots of articles around cancer. I find it very difficult to replace cancer with something else when writing, without distorting what I am trying to say. Of course I can replace it with “disease”, “condition”, “illness”, etc, but certain times this distorts the point I am trying to make and STIFFENS the writing process.

Nonetheless, if this must stick (to weed out the article spammers out there), then it’s imperative that you include a checking feature within the submission area that will alert the writers when there’s excessive keywords/keyphrase used, before accepting a submission. This will save a lot of time re going back and forth before having an article approved.

Comment provided May 8, 2009 at 9:50 AM


Vince Samios writes:


Personally I am primarily an SEO – but I believe strongly that quality beats quantity and I put a lot of effort in getting quality informative articles written.

I feel the solution does not lie in hard coded formulas which bar keyword densities above 2%, but rather in a cognitive appraisal of submitted articles.

If you want to improve the over quality of submitted articles, the answer doesn’t lie in automated formulas. The answer lies in dedicating more resources to appraising the articles.

Yes – you should always provide a few key metrics to those reviewing the article, but they should be no more than a flag for further investigation. ie. “does the article make sense? is it worthwhile?” – give your reviewers the “power” to make a cognitive assessment.

These days in seo a link from an ezine article, is a link from an ezine article – if its posted in the correct category the content of the article has bugger all effect on the power of that link.


the people that will suffer from hard coded metrics are the real experts writing on the subjects in which real information is rare.

Example – If I’m writing about “the lower receptor of the brains cognitive receptor stack” (god knows if that even makes sense) – the word “receptor” is going to be loaded throughout that article. The phrases “lower receptor” and “receptor stack” will also likely be loaded densely, as will words like “cognitive” and “brain”

If I was your average “don’t really give a shit” SEO, if you started imposing 2% hard rules, I would just continue to write rubbish articles which were more broad, less specific, less informative, but still contained that valuable link.

I just feel strongly that the thinking behind this is off a little…

Comment provided May 8, 2009 at 9:57 AM



King J.,

Agreed. We’re already working on a tool right now that will give a gentle warning if you exceed a keyword density metric.

If we can get the keyphrase abuse stopped at the front door, perhaps we’ll be able to ease the keyword density floor limit.

This won’t happen over night, but our dev team is thinking about how to make it happen.

Comment provided May 8, 2009 at 11:34 AM


King J. For writes:

That’s VERY good to hear, Chris… and very encouraging that you are “listening” to us. On a side note, I like the way you come in once a while in the WarriorForum to answer to certain issues raised. I think that’s very professional and shows you value the opinion of your readers. Others would just completely ignore their readers, but not you. Keep up the good job, Chris and the rest of the team at!

Comment provided May 8, 2009 at 4:14 PM


Geoff writes:

“Effective last night, all accounts now are able to see what we see when we reject an article for excessive keyword/keyphrase usage.” Good idea for anyone in that situation. Fortunately it`s never affected me yet, but at least it`s easier to see what the problem is if it should happen.

Comment provided May 9, 2009 at 10:54 AM


Amy Right writes:

Fas for the excessive keyword problem, sometimes it is unavoidable. And is it means that when the keyword density pass 2/100, then it will be rejected?
I haven’t met such problem till now. But I want to know.

Comment provided May 22, 2009 at 2:07 AM


King J. For writes:

Just a quick one to say a wonderful – BRAVO and thanks to you, Chris, and the rest of the team. I noticed that the submit form now has the ability to automatically detect the keyword abuse instances and allow us to correct it before the articles get submitted. This is a GREAT time saver! I also noticed that the “one keyphrase” issue isn’t a problem anymore. Bravo once again. Now for the naysayers – isn’t it obvious why continues to be number one?!

Comment provided June 5, 2009 at 3:47 PM


William Newart writes:

Where is the “VIEW” button? I cannot find it anywhere.

Comment provided June 6, 2009 at 2:46 AM




The VIEW button is within your membership account, on the main home page, when you have an article in PA (Problem Article) status. There’s a VIEW, EDIT, DELETE button in a row to the RIGHT of your article title. Someone from our team will respond to you via email early next week as it’s in our queue.

Comment provided June 6, 2009 at 8:12 AM


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