Understanding Keyword Use for Your Website

Published on Feb 19, 2014




© kritiya - Fotolia.comCurrently there are many debates about whether webpreneurs should still focus on keywords. While the way they are used may have changed, keyword research remains an essential element of effective search engine optimization. Consider the importance of keywords as well as the best ways to find them.

Basics About Keywords and Keyword Phrases

The goal of your website is to attract targeted customers who really want what you offer. Bringing irrelevant traffic to your website is meaningless. The key is to lure customers who are more likely to respond to your call to action. Conversion rates are better when the right type of traffic can find your website. This is the major purpose of using keywords and keyword phrases.

Consider the queries people type into the search bars of search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo. As the owner of a website, you want to know what keywords people use to find businesses such as yours. For example, your business might be landscaping in Newark, NJ. You might use a keyword phrases such as, “Newark NJ landscapers” in your web content. Using the proper keywords can improve your chances of appearing on the first page of certain search engine results. These keywords should be using sparingly to avoid facing penalties from Google and other search engines. Being penalized can cause your website to plummet down the search engines or be eliminated from them.

How to Find Viable Keywords

While some keywords such as “landscaping” or “landscape design,” might be common sense, they could also be saturated. This means many other websites are focused on them, which makes it difficult to improve your site’s rankings. It often better to focus on narrower keywords and keyword phrases to corner a particular search. An example is “lawn and garden services in New Jersey.” Fewer people might be using those keywords, which means you would come out on top when they are used. Think of the terms people might use to find your business and include those keywords in your content.

There are also tech-savvy ways to find good keywords to include in your web content. If Google Analytics are installed on your website, you can check out the Traffic Sources menu. While many results are not provided due to recent Google changes, you can see some of the keywords people use to find your website. Another strategy is to enter your common-sense keywords in the Google search bar. After the results, you should see a section where Google lists keywords that are related to the ones you used. These related keywords can be incorporated into your web content.

Using Keywords Effectively

Now that you have a few keywords you want to use, take advantage of Google Adwords Keyword Planner to find out which keywords attract the most traffic. You will have to register for a Google Adwords account to access this information. If you don’t want to establish an account, Wordtracker has a free keyword tool. Consider using keywords that attract less traffic to corner a certain niche. There is fierce competition for the high-volume keywords.

Certain words are not considered keywords such as your business or product name. You want to use more generalized terms that reflect what your business does. Keywords should be used in the title of your page and in the first paragraph of the web content. Include your chosen keywords in the tags and URL of the web page and sprinkle them into the body of the web content. Never overload your content with keywords. Try creating a web page dedicated to each keyword but avoid overusing it. It is a fine balance between attracting search engines and creating content that repels them. Your content should also be legible, sensible and appeal to human readers. The most important way to attract search engines and potential customers is to provide meaningful, original content.

Search engine optimization and the use of powerful keywords are still viable ways to rank well on search engines. Create interesting content, add a couple of keywords and use a unique voice to reach out to actual people. Striking the right balance is the key to online success.

Main Takeaway:Search engine optimization and the effective use of keywords are still viable ways to get your website noticed by search engines and customers. Do keyword research, use common sense when you select keywords and use them sparingly to avoid penalties. Keep in mind your ultimate goal is to create original, meaningful web content.