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Published On: Fri, Nov 17th, 2017

The Importance of Keywords in SEO

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is a combination of a lot of techniques that come together to determine the rank of a website in the search engine results pages.

Whilst there are a number of contributing factors to this rank or score, keywords is one of the most important, if not the most important, playing a major role. Getting the correct words and phrases is essential and can be aided through an SEO agency.

As a website owner and/or creator, you want the keywords to be relevant to the content on the site whilst reflecting what people are searching for. Essentially, they are the words or phrases that are used to match people’s searches to a website. Selecting high quality, relevant keywords is the best step in increasing the search rank and website traffic.

photo/ Gerd Altmann

What are they?

To ensure that a site appears in the search engine results page, they need to reflect what people are searching for. Hiring a trusted SEO company will certainly help this and likely improve results. Each keyword has a quality score based on its popularity and how often people include it in their searches.

The difficulty comes in finding the right words and phrases that also avoid ambiguity. Say, for example, you own a website that sells soccer equipment and apparel. You may want to rank for “new boots”, but if you’re not careful this might end up attracting people looking for women’s shoes instead.

Again, this is where a trusted SEO company will be able to help to ensure that accurate and clear words and phrases are used such as “new soccer boots” instead to narrow the search scope and guarantee appearance in the correct search engine results.

There are a number of different types of words or phrases that can be used depending on the audience that is trying to be reached. There are keywords that help to identify sites that may be relevant to the search. Stemming from this are two important terms;

  • Short-tail keywords – these involving 1-3 words that target a broader audience and are more commonly used. For example, “clothing” or “men’s soccer”. Not only is the competition much higher for these words, but they are often extremely vague and it is difficult to determine exactly what the searcher is looking for. All of this makes it extremely difficult to rank well using this method.
  • Long-tail keywords – these involve 3 or more words and tend to be more specific. For example, “sports clothing for summer” or “best soccer boots for men”. This drives more traffic to the site that actually wants the services it provides increasingly profitability. There is also often less competition for these making it easier to rank well for the given phrase.

Alternatively, there is the option to use negative keywords which mean that when these words or phrases are typed in, the site will not show up. This is useful for common searches that may include certain words or phrases that are not relevant to the site. Identifying where and when to these different types is easily done with the help of an experienced SEO agency.

Why are they so important?

Keywords are important because they provide the direct link between what people are searching for and the information, product or service that is being provided by the website. They are the key driver in determining the amount of traffic and the type of traffic that the website is receiving.

It is important to understand the needs of visitors and constantly be in touch with search data and is a main reason behind many firms hiring a professional SEO agency like SEO Shark to complete the service for them. Whilst a business may think that they have the perfect words and/or phrases that relate directly to their product or service, if no one is searching for them then they will not be found.

Google does provide a keyword planner which can be helpful in identifying the right keywords for the relevant site and also provides a good summary of the popularity or density of a keyword across other sites to aid in determining the best plan of attack.

Because of the importance of keywords in search engine optimisation, it is highly recommended to employ a professional SEO company  to complete all the required work. Not only will they be able to improve keyword selection and relevance but the other areas of the site such as images, text and video to help improve bounce rate and conversion rates.

Author: Colin Steinway

About the Author

- Outside contributors to the Dispatch are always welcome to offer their unique voices, contradictory opinions or presentation of information not included on the site.

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