The Importance of Keywords
Updated: May 9
Every event has its own generic rule of precepts intended to regulate something for a successful outcome. Be it parenting, cooking, gardening, architecture, technical website building or writing and reading, each event follows learned guidelines.
Take for example how users read on the web. In summary... they don't. People prefer to scan, skim and scroll. This is based on a 1997 study by Neilson & Norton Group the world acclaimed research entity; and this known web reading habit has not changed in 2021. The results of this study found that 79 percent of test users always scanned any new page they came across; only 16 percent read word-for-word.
Unfortunately, that of course affects your stunning and diligently composed website content because all is instantly poofed-away the second the users eyeballs hit your site page.
Thus, all of the above brings us back to the SERP discussion about search engine results listing to Page 1, which of course affects traffic and ultimately conversion potential; and its importance is based on users search and web reading habits.
An eye-tracking study by Google found that most users got what they wanted from the first two or three listings on Page 1 in search results. A perfect search engine gives users exactly what they need with the very first result, every time. That's what exact keywords produce. If that’s what Google is optimizing for, your website should, also.
Google has more than 200 ranking factors for your website to achieve towards the top SERP position. And those guidelines are largely related to algorithms.
Algorithms have sophisticated systems for analyzing the keywords that users employ in their queries as well as the terms that are used throughout a given piece of content.
Keywords are not a ranking factor
Before you can achieve ranking your site must be found.
And that's the purpose of keywords.
Researching keywords can be a daunting experience and time consuming. The skill of keyword usage is based on reverse engineering. In other words, a writer has be familiar with the users search query (keyword) that is plugged into the browser... for the crawler to understand what the user is requesting. If the match is exact BINGO!
A keyword is a descriptor for information retrieval. It is a term that captures the essence of the topic of a document. Keywords are stored in search index. Search engine optimization indexing is the collecting, parsing, and storing of data to facilitate fast and accurate information retrieval.
Some folks think that adding keywords to your page's code as custom meta tags will improve ranking. However, it's important to keep in mind that Google and other major search engines don't use keywords as a ranking factor. As such, these meta tags do not affect the way your site is indexed and ranked in search results. Search engines use your content to understand each page's value and rank it accordingly.
Hear what Google's software engineer has to say about meta tagging keywords.
How many types of keywords are there?
Every situation has its own keywords. Different audiences require different keywords. Here are a few introductions with specific characteristics briefly mentioned
High search volume, high competitive rate, broad search intent, low conversion rate; use it as a theme keyword that appears consistently throughout your website
Low search volume, low competitive rate, specific search intent, high conversion rate; use this for targeted pages especially product page and blog posts.
3. Short-term fresh keyword
Explosive search volume, medium competitive rate, specific search intent, high conversion rate; use it to create up-to-date content for view.
4. Long-term evergreen keyword
Moderate search volume, medium competitive rate, specific search intent, high conversion rate; use them to craft detailed, informative pieces that can be updated regularly or age well.
5. Product defining keyword
Low search volume, low competitive rate, specific search intent, high conversion rate; use it on your product pages to stand out from the generic crowd and match user intent.
6. Customer defining keyword
Low search volume, low competitive rate, specific search intent, high conversion rate; use it to address your customers directly to create a sense that the product is tailored made for them.
7. Geo-targeting keyword
Low search volume, low competitive rate, specific search intent, high conversion rate; critical for local business, and delivery base business
8. LSI keywords (Latent Semantic Indexing)
Low search volume, low competitive rate, specific search intent, high conversion rate; boost ranking signal for the main keyword, and good for content creation.
Some folks who don't want to do keyword research they rely on Black hat SEO. These are tactics that are used to rank a website that violates search engine guidelines Black hat SEO techniques attempt to manipulate search engine algorithms to increase a site's rankings on the SERPs.
The following SEO tactics are considered black hat and should not be exercised at all if you want to stay above board with Google and other search engines:
Hidden Text or Links
Reporting a Competitor
Guest Posting Networks
Link Farms, Link Wheels or Link Networks
Rich Snippet Markup Spam
Automated Queries to Google
Creating pages, subdomains, or domains with duplicate content
In the event that your website is the target of a negative SEO campaign of spammy links, use the Disavow Links Tool in Google Webmaster Tools after you've tried to contact webmasters whom are pointing these links to your website to have them removed.
Using black hat SEO tactics can lead to your website being penalized (either algorithmically or with a manual action), which means lower-ranking positions and, most likely, a decline in organic traffic.
Be safe with happy keyword researching!