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Say I'm going to link to another site using the phrase "banana split and chocolate sauce". Is my "vote" evenly split between "banana split" and "chocolate sauce" or is this much weaker than if I had just voted for "banana split" in the first place?

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In all honestly, I don't think it really matters. – DisgruntledGoat Nov 9 '10 at 17:21
@disgruntledgoat Do you mean to say that there is no difference between using "banana split and chocolate sauce" on two pages with similar page rank vs using "banana split" on one and "chocolate sauce" on the other? – Michael Pryor Nov 9 '10 at 17:31

I said in the comment that it doesn't matter. What I mean is the difference is so small it's not worth worrying about.

If you link to a page with "banana split and chocolate sauce" then the page can be returned for any of those 4 keywords. If you linked with "banana split" then a search for "chocolate sauce" would not return that page unless it has those words somewhere else. (And if those words were on the page, that would carry more weight that one in-link.)

Whether the query "banana split" would favour the longer or shorter link text is pretty much impossible to discern.

You could try testing it by linking to two pages with those two variations and see what comes on top (using banana split site:example.com). The problem here is that there would be so many other factors like surrounding text, position of links and so on.

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