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Gibberish Scores

What does Gibberish Scores mean ?

Gibberish Scores is a system of Google to separate senseless “gibberish” (German translation of Gibberish) from relevant content. In German, it is therefore also often referred to as “Schwafel-Score”. The first patent for the corresponding system was filed in 2009. Since then, the system has been improved many times and equipped with new capabilities.

What are the goals of Gibberish Scores?

  • “Thin” content should be identified. This means only superficial texts that get lost in meaningless phrases.
  • Copied content should be found more easily.
  • Web spam should be easily identified. This includes, for example, largely meaningless strings of keywords.

How does the Gibberish Score work?

The system is built on two pillars: the Language Model Score and the Query Stuffing Score. In the first case, the focus is on the language. The system cleans texts from all HTML elements. The Language Model Score then breaks down the texts into small units.


These are then compared with the content of other results for specific search queries. Originally, Google could only use a certain number of results that were saved over a relatively short period of time.

The Query Stuffing Score also works with algorithms. These can take into account not only individual keywords, but also entire phrases.

The algorithms reveal two things

  • Has keyword spamming taken place?
  • Is the text relevant in terms of the phrases and secondary keywords used?

Finally, both partial scores are merged. From this, the “schwafel score” is formed. Unfortunately, Google does not specify when it becomes “critical”. It is also unclear, for example, how it behaves with other texts. To what extent are these also used.


As an example: A Shoppage of Amazon usually also contains customer reviews that were not formulated with the idea that verbiage should be avoided.

What are the consequences for SEO?

In general, quality content has become more important than ever with the introduction of the “gobbledygook score”. One of the mottos in this regard is “content is king”. A concrete manifestation of this is the WDF*IDF index. This is actually older than the score, but already took into account not only keywords, but weighted certain phrases heavily. In addition, the index also focused on secondary keywords. Simply rewritten texts are also no longer possible. The so-called copywriting has therefore become much more complex. For a long time, machine-generated texts were also no longer a real alternative, because they could only produce content that was too “thin”. In this respect, however, there has been so much progress in the meantime that this could change again.


In summary, what Google itself wrote in its patent applies: It is a valuable tool “for determining whether a source’s ranking needs to be adjusted.” This is true both upward and downward.

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