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Do Singular and Plural Key Phrases Matter When Optimizing For Search Engines?

Jennifer Gayadin November 17, 2009 Category Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

There are many beliefs on singular and plural key phrases in the matter of optimizing. You would think a simple variation of adding an “S” or “ies” wouldn’t make all the difference right?

Well guess what, it absolutely does.

Let’s take the word “flower” for example. In Google, the number one search result listing for “flower”  is wikipedia.org. Now let’s search for the plural form, “flowers”. The number one listing for “flowers” is FTD.com.


A lot of people think Google is “smart” enough to detect the similarities, but the truth of the matter is that they are looked at as two separate words (yes even it is just a “s” it makes a difference!). Many websites may rank for a plural term but are nowhere to be found when searching for the singular.

I Want To Rank For Both Singular and Plural Key phrases, How Can I Do That?

The next thought is usually, “well – I want to rank for both “. Of course you do, who wouldn’t right? Every single website has to have a different approach and there are many aspects you have to take into consideration . A rule of thumb that you may use for one website might not necessarily work out for the other, even if you’re dealing with different variations of the same word on the same site. Things like competition, high volume traffic, long tail phrases vs. short tail phrases are things you would have to keep into consideration.

Jennifer Gayadin is a SEO Search Strategist for Path Interactive, a NYC Search Marketing Firm

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