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Keyword Targeting: A Guide

Estimated reading time: 3 mins

An incredible 3.5 billion searches are performed every day on Google alone. This is why search engine optimization is a crucial aspect of your business marketing plan. If you don’t appear on page one, your competitor will, and you will likely lose valuable customers.

Under the broad SEO umbrella are on-page and off-page optimization. Both are equally as important; both can boost your organic search ranking, moving you up the result pages. On-page SEO counts toward 25% on your overall optimization, but it is the only factor which is entirely in your control. It means you need to utilizeit to the highest standard, and one such way is to use targeted keywords to move up the search engine results page (SERP).

But, how do you know which keywords are the best, and where do you use them?

The following guide is going to touch on these two important points:

  1. How to choose the right keywords
  2. Where to use target keywords

How to Choose the Right Keywords

A business cannot create an effective keyword strategy without knowing which words and phrases to focus on, and most importantly, how to use them. While once short, snappy keywords were the best for the job, experts now believe that long-tail keywords are much more effective. On Google, 70% of searches now include long-tail keywords. People don’t search “buy wedding favors”; they will instead look up “where to buy wedding favors for my bridesmaids.” You need to replicate what people are going to type into the search box on your website to ensure you are the first result.

To create your keyword strategy, there are a variety ofexpert tools that you can access to help collate the best list.

However, you will need to come up with initial ideas. These should relate to your business and the goals you wish to achieve. Do you want your wedding favors page to move up the ranks? If so, base the keywords around this before undertaking target research. Think like your customers rather than a business owner to discover the best phrases.

Once you have your master list, narrow it down. Create a list of variations for the same phrases before choosing the one most natural to your content and your page. Be specific rather than generic.

When narrowing down your keywords, you need to focus on these crucial areas:

  1. Search volume: How many times a phrase is entered into Google.
  2. Relevance: How relevant the keyword is to both your business and what you want to achieve.
  3. Current rank: Do you currently rank for any of these terms? If so, how can you improve your positioning?

Once this research is complete, you will have the top phrases and search terms to use for on-page SEO, but never stop researching. The job is not donejust because you have a list of viable keywords and phrases. Not only do the search engine algorithms change, but so does how people search, and what they search for.

Where to Use Target Keywords

For the novice website owner, it can be tempting to stuff as many keywords into a paragraph as possible. Thisis incorrect practiceand one thatcan see you penalizedby the algorithm. You need to use these phrases and words as naturally as possible. It’s advised to head to a specialist, such as Digital Mark Group, a Portland SEO agency, that can research the best terms and seamlessly integrate them into the content.

Focus on the following three areas of your website first:

  1. Page title: Highly influential, putting your keyword at the beginning of your page title will help you rank better.
  2. Content: This is the place where you willmost often see keywords heavily stuffed. The content text contributes less toward your overall SEO, but it is still important, and you still need to optimize it with the correct keywords. As many search terms as seems natural is the right amount. It could be two, or it could be
 

About the author /


Simon is a creative and passionate business leader dedicated to having fun in the pursuit of high performance and personal development. He is co-founder of Applied Change, a Business Change consultancy based in the UK. Simon is also an Ambassador for Gloucestershire business. Simon is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Professional Development.

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