How Google Treats Articles that Use Cuss Words
I wanted to use some cuss or swear words while I write on my blog. Nothing serious, just a couple of f-words here and there.
But I don’t want to get into the bad book of Google while doing so.
That’s why I searched for information on how Google sees cuss words on a web page.
Do Curse Words Hurt SEO?
Using curse words in suitable niches moderately is likely to be just fine.
However, it turns out that like so many other factors in SEO, this is also a question where the answer starts with the phrase – it depends.
There are no official statements from Google on the use of cuss words. The forum users on Moz, StackExchange, and Reddit also seemed divided in their opinions. However, most of them agree that using in suitable niches in moderation is likely to be just fine.
One commenter rightly points out that Google does index and rank adult content and they are often filled with a hell lot of objectionable words, right?
So, my best bet is that using cuss words if it goes with the niche, matches the tone and voice, and adds to the reader experience, won’t hurt your SEO. You will rank just fine, given all the other SEO signals are in your favor.
It might actually help in making the content unique a bit.
But as with anything else, it’s strongly advised to not go overboard with the use of profanities. Also, do not use such words when it is not suitable.
The Safe Search Factor
One thing that is almost certain is that if a user is searching Google in safe search mode, then your content can be filtered due to having obscene words.
And remember, the safe search mode is turned on by default.
But how much profanity is required to get filtered can not be measured for certain. Will one or two f-words and a couple of s**ts hurts? Maybe not, but the exact quantity measurements are not available.
Can You Use Swear Words on a Website?
In a nutshell, yes you can if it goes with your niche and audience.
But always do it in moderation and only when it adds actual value to your content in a stylistic way.
But before you finally make a decision to use swear or curse words in your content, keep these factors in mind.
Factors to keep in mind before using cuss words:
- Advertisers might not want their ads on pages with offensive words. So, consult with your ad networks about the use of swear words.
- Some niches most probably have a higher sensitivity to cuss words, such as niches related to children.
- Will your use of curse words be taken as unprofessional by your readers?
- Will your audience be put off by your use of the f and s-words?
Considering all the factors, I have decided not to use any swear words on my websites.
I think you should also do the same unless you are sure that your industry and audience are okay with using such words. And, in all the cases, keep the use to a minimum.