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Matt Cutts is back again with another one of his block rocking beats. The Webmaster Help videos that Matt Cutts puts out may not be the most glamorous pieces of SEO news around, but we still honestly feel that they are worth covering. Paying attention to the great, sweeping changes in the SEO field is only a piece of the puzzle. To truly have great SEO success, you need to know the minutea and have it perfected at every level. It’s a tough job, but it’s what separates great SEO companies from not so great SEO companies.
This week, Matt Cutts is asked the following:
“In terms of SEO, what is the difference between <strong> tag and <b> tag for emphasis on certain words of text. From the user perspective, both tags have the same effect (words in bold). Which tags should we use in which circumstances?”
This is actually a question that gets asked a lot, and people have many different theories about what exactly is the right way to do things. When do you use the <strong> or <b> tags? Well, according to Matt Cutts, it just doesn’t matter, so you can stop worrying about it.
Yup, sorry to break it to all of you bold and strong conspiracy theorists out there, but Google treats the tags exactly the same. The only advice we can really give you is to use them as naturally as possible. If you’re writing copy and you want to emphasize a word to make it stand out in the text, that’s where you traditionally use bold. If you want to emphasize a word so that it’s read by screen reading programs and the like differently, then you use the strong tag.
According to Matt Cutts, it doesn’t really matter either way anymore. Modern browsers will display both as bold, so just do what you think is best.