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Ranking With Intentional Misspellings

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SEO misspellingsGoogle is smart. They want to be smarter. Every search engine dreams about developing an algorithm that actually predicts a searchers intent, and if there is anyone out there who might solve the puzzle, it will probably be Google. I appreciate when Google can look at a search I make and understand when I misspelled something. But what happens when I’m trying to rank something that is intentionally spelled incorrectly?

Well, Google hasn’t quite planned for that. At least their algorithm doesn’t address it.

I’m working with two companies now that have altered, cute spellings for their brand. One ranks properly for the misspellings, the other doesn’t. The first has been in existence for a while with a lot of links, the second is equally old, but very small – it doesn’t have a large link portfolio. Both have the intentionally misspelled terms in their URL.

I’m not alone. Other webmasters frequent the Google help forums with the same issues. We do not want Google auto-correcting our spelling. Frankly, I don’t even want a “did you mean…” link in the result pages, but I understand the option. To be a company with an intentionally misspelled name or product, it’s pretty important you hammer home your intentions with your content and your links. You have to work harder to get Google to notice, just like you do your consumers. Led Zepplin and Def Leppard didn’t get spelled in the “officially” correct names until they were household names. Same concept applies.


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