Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Keyword Use - The Right Way and The Wrong Way

Keywords use and keyword density are probably the toughest things for a newbie marketer to fully understand. Part of the reason may be the ever changing search engine algorithms, but for most, it is the idea that if a little is good...then a lot must be better.

Understanding keyword density and how to make the most impact on a web page SEO is not always cut and dry. If you ask many SEO experts, you may well get a variety of answers to just what the keyword density of a page should be. The truth is, because the search engines are not forthright with their guidelines, we are left to judge for ourselves and find the answers through trial and error.

Unfortunately, the "error" side of the trial can be costly as it may result in getting a page de-indexed, never to return. What I can share with you, with certainty, is what you should and should not be doing. Following these tips will make the best use of your keywords and get you the best results.

Follow the leaders. Since we do not have it in writing what is and is not acceptable, we should look to the leaders to determine the best keyword density. Since EzineArticles is considered one of the best, they allow only 2% keyword density, therefore this is what you should aim for in your own web content.

Choose only one main keyword phrase per page. Now this is the one that most newbies or inexperienced SEO people have the most trouble with. Just because you have a list of 10 keywords that you would like to rank for does not mean you should put all of them into every page of your website. If you do, you will get the opposite effect and likely will never rank for any of them. To be most effective you need one per page. So, if you have 10 phrases you need to have 10 different pages, one for each.

By placing them all in one page, you are actually diluting their effectiveness and confusing the search engines because they cannot pick out one significant word amongst the mish-mash of content.

Definitely the wrong way to use keywords:

For example, let's say your website is a site that sells items for people who own dogs. You may have a list of keywords such as: dog lovers gifts, dog owners gifts, gifts for dog lovers, gifts for dog owners, etc. If you were to use all of those phrases within a product description that was typically 100 words in length this would be a very bad idea. Not only would it not give a clear statement to the search engines, you may very well be slapped with the label of keyword stuffing because the words dog and gifts would be appearing at a very high keyword density. Not to mention, the readability for your visitors would be very poor and your site will appear to be low quality in the eyes of the shopper.


The right way to use keywords:
Select one keyword. Place that main phrase in a title heading at the top of the page. Forget all of the others and focus on the one phrase for that webpage. You should include it in your first sentence and in the last sentence. And that is it. No more. If then length of your text is greater than 200 words, you may choose to add it once more somewhere in the middle. Because you have included it in your heading, the search engine already knows it is the main focus of the page. It is not necessary to stuff it in there every hundred words. Just make sure it appears as close to the beginning of the text and as close to the end of the text as possible.

Now just repeat the process with each of your keywords. You will be surprised at how much better your site performs in the search engines when you give them a very clear message of what each individual page is about and you will move up the rankings for each phrase because your pages are now clearly defined and you are using the proper keyword density.

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