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Keyword definition


Keyword (© PureSolution / Fotolia.com)

Keyword (© PureSolution / Fotolia.com)

When it comes to digital marketing, there are few aspects that are more important and fundamental than SEO. And when it comes to SEO, understanding keywords lies right at the heart of your understanding and your success. When it comes to digital marketing, there are few aspects that are more important and fundamental than SEO. And when it comes to SEO, understanding keywords lies right at the heart of your understanding and your success.

What is a Keyword

SEO is search engine optimization. This is the process of getting your content to ‘rank’ at the top of the SERPS (search engine results pages), so that when someone searches for a specific term, they’ll find your site. So if you have a site that sells hats, then you might want to appear on the SERP for the term ‘buy hats online’. This way, people who are actively looking to buy hats, will now be much more likely to discover your site and to buy hats from you.

In this scenario, your keywords are:

“Buy hats online”

We talk about ‘a keyword’ as being this string of words, when really the term ‘keyphrase’ or ‘key term’ might be more appropriate. Either way, this is the term that you want your site to rank for and that you believe will bring the right, targeted traffic to your company.

How to Use Keywords

So, what does this mean in real terms? How does this affect your marketing strategy?

The first thing that a company will need to consider, is doing keyword research. This means looking at the terms that are most likely to bring people to a website in a specific niche and it means looking at the ‘search volume’ for specific phrases. In other words, people might be searching for certain phrases a whole lot and others not at all – there’s no point in spending time and/or money on SEO if your keyword isn’t something that will bring you any new traffic!

But at the same time, you also need to consider the competition around your term. This is where local SEO terms and where long term keywords can sometimes be good strategies. From there, a company then needs to strategically include those search terms in its marketing. That means lacing content on the site with those search terms and it also means including them in the branding, in the file names and in the meta tags around the site.

openPR-Tip: It’s important that this is done in a careful manner. SEOs must use search terms in their text but without making it look unnatural – it is recommended that they aim for a ‘density’ of around 1-2%. Likewise, they must use related terms and vocabulary as would naturally occur. This is what is sometimes now referred to as latent semantic indexing.

In short, this is a relatively complex process but the basic objective is to increase the number of times that you repeat the specific phrase throughout your site and to thereby increase the likelihood that Google will associate that term with your brand.


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