I would like to know your thoughts on tag clouds. We would like to add one to our careers web site but are being told that this is not an acceptable practice for business to business web sites and we will be black listed by search engines. Is it true that only blogs and internal social networking type sites are “allowed” to use these?
Whoever gave you that advice is talking bollocks. For starters, if you use tags or topics on your site, tag clouds are a useful navigation feature to help your site visitors find the topics they are interested in. Tag clouds don’t have to be limited to blogs.
The idea that you will be black-listed by search engines for using tag clouds is utter nonsense! If it makes life easier for your readers to have a tag cloud on your site, go ahead and use one. If anything, a tag cloud will probably make it easier for all your various pages to be indexed by search engines as they are similar to a site map.
Very cool. What the heck is a “Tag Cloud?”
I can answer it for you. Don’t use it. They are over used and for the visually impaired they are even harder. So don’t worry about black listing by not using them.
I heard a very interesting audio the other day that mentioned tagclouds. Tagclouds also help you to identify the most searched word or phrases on your site. You then use this feedback eg if creating another site. Use that word in the name of your site as first or second word. Also use it in the content of your site.
P.S Found your site listed on the 100 Awesome List – http://whdb.com/2008/100-awesome-webmaster-blogs-by-and-for-women/
As for the ‘visually impaired’ comment above we can always increase the size of the font for the tagcloud. In most cases if they cant read the tagcloud they wouldn’t be able to read your site as the tagcloud font is usually bigger print than your site.
If the tag cloud consists of specific keywords, written as text in different sizes/colors, each being a separate internal link with relevant “title” tags added to each, this would get round the visually impaired or screen reading visitor issues.
As for being penalised I really don’t think this could be an issue as all you are doing is providing relevant internal links that could mirror your “keywords” and “description” Meta tags so increasing the relevancy of the meta data.
So long as they are used and included in the saturation percentage then I see no reason for any SE to impose penalties.
I rate tag clouds but I must confess I have still to implement one on my own site but would have no issue using them.
I notice your pages do not utilise tag clouds, is there any reason for that.
The only reason I don’t use tag clouds is space conservation! I have my topic drop down list at the top which also lists the number of posts on the related topic, so I feel that having a tag cloud as well is a bit overkill. Plus there seems no obvious space for it