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Is minifying id and class names a bad SEO practice?

I have seen some of our competitors using keyword rich CSS class names. As an example, if I were in the pet grooming business, I would name my #menu as:

#menu.pet.grooming.moreKeywords.etc { ... }

Does this have any effect on SEO? If so, what is the best practice?

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Jul 19 '12 at 15:59

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

marked as duplicate by John Conde Jul 19 '12 at 16:14

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

Branding and SEO seem to have gotten mixed together. I'd say that is branding, not SEO. It's still valuable, but probably won't help page rankings in the major search engines. – J.Money Sep 8 '15 at 17:34
up vote 10 down vote accepted

Google says nothing about that. The more important things are page structure (correct tags, H1 for headers, sections, etc..), metatags and urls.

The google prefers sites that loads fast, that have good structure and descriptive urls. You should focus on that.

More info here: http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=35291

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Thanks for you answer and providing a source. – Jon Edwards Jul 19 '12 at 15:53

Absolutely 100% NOT!

It's a good rule to make your CSS classes useful and descriptive for a human to read...but what you're seeing here is probably just this; good naming conventions. If your competitor believes that this will help with SEO then they are mistaken.

Instead, focus on good 'in page' content, descriptive titles and useful meta tags.

Avoid keyword stuffing and spamming; it will get you nowhere fast.

Good luck, Michael.

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No. The general rule is things that affect SEO are things that will affect the users experience on the page. Class names do not, in fact they could even slow it down, google recommend short class names

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Answer: Do not use custom CSS class names for SEO benefits.

Many modern search engines will not be looking for keywords within your tags - imagine the miniscule percentage of websites that actually customize their tags to cater for search engines and how much unnecessary work would be required to implement tag-crawling as a result.

Instead, make sure to use standard tag names such as a, ul as much as you can without having to result to CSS tricks. These will make your site much easier to crawl, indexing many more pages as a result. Make sure to use heading tags (h1, h2 ... hn) as much as possible over custom CSS font tags as search engines will make sure to emphasize these results later.

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