I am not sure what the obsession around LSI keywords is in the SEO space. It is one of those myths that simply won’t go away, despite how often SEOs and Googlers say there is no such thing. So now 2023 is more than half done, and John Mueller of Google said it again (well, he said it several months ago but you guys wanted me to post on Labor Day).
John said on Twitter, “both have no effect. Anyone who tells you to use LSI keywords is … still wrong after all these years.”
Here was the question:
— Suhail Ahmed (@engrsuhail92) January 2, 2023
John first responded with a bit of snark and then replied again:
(Both have no effect. Anyone who tells you to use LSI keywords is … still wrong after all these years)
— John Mueller is mostly not here 🐀 (@JohnMu) January 2, 2023
Here is what John said in 2019:
There’s no such thing as LSI keywords — anyone who’s telling you otherwise is mistaken, sorry.
— John Mueller is mostly not here 🐀 (@JohnMu) July 30, 2019
LSI is Latent Semantic Indexing or Latent Semantic Analysis (LSA) – a topic I really have not mentioned here since that 2019 statement and then prior to that was in 2005. It is basically a natural language technique that analyzes the relationships between a set of documents and the terms they contain by producing a set of concepts related to the documents and terms. It is a technique Google can use to understand content and concepts on pages within its index. The late and great Bill Slawski wrote about it and covered if Google uses it or not. But we’ve seen SEOs use that talk before, see this thread where an SEO said, “LSI/keywords seems to have become less important and authority more important,” when discussing an algorithm change.
So here is the 2023 version of that. Note, I wrote this the first week of January but didn’t publish it until now.
Forum discussion at Twitter.