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I'm working on a CMS which gets keywords from end user, which means that they are totally dynamic for each page. I get each keyword separately. What delimiter characters should I use to include those keywords in <meta name='keywords' element?

Second question is, can I use space in my keywords? For example, can I have this meta tag element:

<meta name='keywords' content='first keywords, second keyword with space, third keyword with space and another space' />
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Separate your keywords with a comma. Spaces are fine.

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keywords meta tag was maybe usueful in 1990.

Therefor I would say you can spend time putting a comma after each keyword, or simply remove the keyword meta tag.

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  • @Macro, what do you mean keywords meta tag was maybe useful in 1990. Has Google or other search engines recently announced they don't support it anymore? Jul 23 '11 at 11:56
  • @Saeed Neamati: they do support anything written in your site, but meta keywords have no value as a ranking factor now days. Think at it in this way: I create a site that sells Viagra, porn movies etc. Then I think it could be cool to make it be shown on Google when people search for "bank account", so I write in meta keywords 100 times bank, account. Do you really think Google is going to rank well my site when people search for "bank account"?! It would be too easy to cheat the system and Google would be a company worth 10$ instead of billions. BTW: I'm not a MACRO. :) Jul 23 '11 at 14:53
  • thanks for explanation. It is logical as you described it. But do you have proves for that? I know Google uses over 200 factors to rank sites. Maybe meta keywords is also a small factor, but still a factor. :) Sorry to misspell your name. Jul 23 '11 at 17:27
  • @Saeed Neamati: the ref you asked for: webmasters.stackexchange.com/questions/11327/… moreover stackexcahnge itself (this site) is well optimizied for SEO look in source code, do you see any meta keywords?! :) No problem for the wrong spelling of my name. Jul 23 '11 at 17:36
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Space delimitation is fine. And while the keywords meta tag is no longer useful in Google, Yahoo, or other major search engines in the Western world, some Chinese search engines still utilize the keywords meta tag.

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Yes here I would use a comma or a space as well. Do not use a . # or @ sign. This will trip up your database big time if you're going to use these as your delimiters. The . character can give you some flexibility in other scenarios, but usually keywords are not ended with a period.

Commas as delimiters, in certain contexts can be bad too, for example, let's say in the middle of a sentence wherein there is a break in continuity in the text, but it depends on your deployment of such delimiters. But since you're just talking about keywords, you can use the comma as the delimiter here.

It's almost unheard of to have in a keyword, a comma. If your keyword is a comma, that's a problem. That can easily be fixed by defaulting to a space delimiter:

  1. In that instance, if you want to use the comma as the delimiter, then you have to specify to the user that an extra input will be needed, ergo not making the comma the delimiter.

This is probably the best solution, because with spaces, there are intrinsically no keywords that are entirely blank spaces.

I was thinking of another solution, but it would probably be a waste of time because it doesn't really make sense to search up a comma as a keyword as a singular character.

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According to this person's experience (comment at the end), using space works better than commas.

But he mentioned it was the days when keywords meta tag was still important

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