Keywords. That is, “words that are key” are the backbone of good SEO and Internet Marketing in general. Keywords are bid on for paid searches and they are used to index organic search. In short, they are used to define what a website is about.
Search Alogrithms have changed on how to use keywords effectively. For instance, back in the late 90s, the robot crawlers would look at how often a word was used on a page and also how many words were used in the meta keyword tag. This led to abuses of “keyword stuffing” and “hidden text.” Because of these abuses and others, the algorithm has been changed and continues to change to keep abuses in check.
Because of the abuses of the past, some may be quick to right off effective keyword practice and concentrate on something else, like link building or viral techniques. It is important to know that keywords still play a major part of the overall SEO process – there just needs to be some bravery in knowing what you stand for on the Internet, so this week I’ll be using the not-so-chick-flick Braveheart as an example.
A Small Business Owner
Once I talked with a client about what he wanted to convey on his site. He quickly laid out what he wanted to mention, but careful not to be confused with products his competitors provide. Listing keywords he wanted to use, he became very specific in the phrases he wanted to be known for and was proud of his niche. After taking his list and doing an analysis of those keyword phrases, there was a problem – no one was searching for those terms. He then understood that he needed to craft a site around words that people were searching for, yet stay away from words that thousands of other sites were using. By employing less competative words that people were still searching for and building landing pages that focused on different aspects of his products, he has more of a chance to be found by people who want what he has.
While it is essential to know how you are different than your competition, you first need to let people know about your market and get them in the door.
“I ask that you cease these hostile activities upon our humble nation. Though we seek soverignty, we are not beyond reasonable negotiations that will let us live in peaceful co-existance so as you stop bugging us with your unreasonable local magistrates, intimidating strongholds and all-around general smugness. Leave our women alone and we won’t run you through.”
While crafty marketing speak is respectable, most people want you to speak your peace in as few words as possible. It is key (pun intended) to get your point across quickly by using keywords in your copywriting so those who may be in your market can then come to your site and THEN decide if your terms are worth pursuing. When William Wallace was tied to a table and was beginning to experience new types of pain, he was quickly able to express his own personal keyword. Though some would have chosen to say “ow!” on the table-of-pain he said “Freedom.”
Imagine then, yourself, tied to said table and express your business using as few words as possible.
RETAIL DISPLAY FIXTURES!!!!
CHEAP AIRLINE TICKETS!!!!
FROZEN DOG TREATS!!!!
Once you categorize your business on your website, you are one step closer to bringing a smile to the faces of the Indexing programs of Search Engines. Keep in mind to choose words that:
Would actually be typed into a search engine
Would not be used by every single website currently on the Internet
Would be best placed in your title and H1 tags
Would be used throughout your regular text, when approproate, on your site
To recap, if you think like a web surfer who is trying to find something in your market, the better you position yourself in that market. When you do that then it is more likely someone will enter your site based on your effective keywords alone. Once they enter your site, then you can write and market all the different things that make you cooler than the other sites that ranked around you - wearing a kilt is optional.