I just found this answer with this bit in the middle:

Please ignore the following questions. These are meant to be picked up by Google/search-engines to better aid in quick research for beginners, as well as redirecting those who would ask the same/similar questions unnecessarily.

How do I create larger structs in Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2013?
How do I create structs with more sections in Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2013?
How do I create large structs in Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2013?
How do I edit MSVS2013 Compiler options?

I'm pretty sure this is not the way to do SEO, but on the other hand, should we have a "hidden" place to put "similar questions" for SEO in the question/answers? Not sure how to handle this.

Should the SEO questions be removed, or moved to the question and made invisible?

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    This looks like a very well-intentioned attempt at creating a reference question. It probably isn't going to work though because it deviates too much from the site's conventions – Pekka Dec 19 '13 at 22:34
  • There is some duplicate answers here: stackoverflow.com/questions/8225078/… and stackoverflow.com/questions/16663365/… – John Palmer Dec 19 '13 at 22:38
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    The whole question is dodgy, to be honest. While it is a valid question "don't ever do that" seems like the only valid answer. – Time Traveling Bobby Dec 19 '13 at 22:39
  • I realize the question itself is dodgy, and I presume normal SO behavior will handle that. This post is about the embedded SEO questions, and if they should be hidden or removed. – Mooing Duck Dec 19 '13 at 22:41
  • @JohnPalmer: These questions aren't that great as well...I'm in favor of closing the other two as duplicates of #8225078. – Time Traveling Bobby Dec 19 '13 at 22:42
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    Removed...I'm not aware of any rules or directives for this, but what isn't part of the answer should be removed from the answer...those "other questions' are not part of the answer (and also not of the question). – Time Traveling Bobby Dec 19 '13 at 22:44
  • They definitely do not belong in the answer, but It occurred to me it might be helpful to leave them (invisibly) in the question. – Mooing Duck Dec 19 '13 at 22:45
  • This popped up in the sidebar: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/99775/… Did I just make a dupe? – Mooing Duck Dec 19 '13 at 22:47
  • Not really in my opinion. Most search-engines are building a list of "alternate" questions themselves (what was searched, what was clicked), this list will naturally grow within the search-engine if there is demand/need for it. – Time Traveling Bobby Dec 19 '13 at 22:47
  • No, your question is about a specific behavior/instance. – Time Traveling Bobby Dec 19 '13 at 22:48
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    @MooingDuck Hiding text for SEO purposes is a quick way to get penalised or even black-listed by search engines. It is ok to hide text only if it is intended to be read by users via clicking a button/dropdown/etc. See Matt Cutts talking about the right/wrong ways to use hidden text. – Dhaust Dec 19 '13 at 23:28
  • What a very very strange idea. – TRiG Dec 19 '13 at 23:56
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    Maybe a feature should be added to have alternate titles for the same question. It would certainly help in dealing with duplicates. – Menelaos Dec 25 '13 at 22:33

SEO phrases should be removed from answers for two reasons:

  • They don’t answer the question.
  • They pollute the site. If we let this slip through, we will see more and more of this. Imagine such a list on every 3rd answer, each one competing with similar lists on other answers.
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    The OP rolled back the previous removal so I've flagged to get moderator attention on the issue – Richard Tingle Dec 25 '13 at 22:30
  • @RichardTingle I rolled back the rollback (hah). We'll see if it gets reverted again. – Adam Lear Dec 25 '13 at 23:38
  • I took the same out of another answer. And now … we have a link-only answer. – fuxia Dec 25 '13 at 23:52

If the information in the SEO questions is useful, consider rewriting it to flow naturally. For example:

In order to create large structs you will need to edit the compiler options, since you're using Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2013. [The answer...].

Because people sometimes link directly to an answer, it can be helpful to give a sentence or two of explanation for what your answer is solving.

Content should be both useful for people and easy to find with search engines, not one or the other. If something's not useful to the people reading the post, it should be removed (certainly the SEO questions as quoted are of no use to readers).

Most search engines do fuzzy matching, where, for example, searching for 'big struct' would find you a page with 'large struct'. The notable exception to this is the built-in search, but for that we have tags.

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