A Beginner’s Guide To Keywords

Although many of us have probably heard of the term ‘keyword’, a lot of people do not actually understand the importance of keywords in the digital marketing world. Providing content that satisfies a users demand is crucial in driving in good quality, relevant website traffic. To ensure you publish the right content for your site it is important to understand what users are searching for. That is why we have provided to you a beginner’s guide to keywords, read on to find out more.

What Are Keywords?

Keywords or phrases in a digital marketing sense are the words and phrases that searchers use when entering queries into search engines. As a webmaster, you want the keywords on your pages to be relevant and match what people are searching, giving you a greater chance of being found and driving traffic.

Why Are Keywords Important?

Keywords are important as they act as the middle ground between what a user is searching for and webmasters publishing and providing relevant content to the user. When a site ranks effectively in search engines it will drive organic traffic to the site, the keywords that you optimise for determine the kind of traffic you will receive. Effective optimisation that is targeted towards a companies target market ensures you will drive in relevant traffic.

As search engines become more intelligent and sophisticated, the relevance of keywords’ content and context are becoming more important. Users perform searches differently, variations such as language, tone and tense play a role in the search results displayed. To create content that ranks organically and drives in traffic it is important to understand the needs of visitors. Effective keyword research, customer feedback, engaging in community forums and even observing the results pages gives you the opportunity to get a feel for your target market and the kind of searches that are being made.

Are Long Tail Keywords Useful?

Keywords contain different dynamics. Top level keywords, which tend to be generic terms, are usually shorter but have much larger search volumes. These naturally tend to be much harder and more competitive to rank for. Longer tailed keywords or phrases are longer and contain a more detailed search intent. Because of this, longer tailed keywords will tend to have lower search volumes but are usually easier to rank for. While it is tempting to target keywords with massive search volumes, the reality of you ranking well in a short period of time is very low. In some instances companies find it makes more sense to rank much higher for lower volume search terms.

Using Keywords Effectively

In the early days of SEO it was common practice to keyword stuff, mention your keywords as many times as possible, and this would often be enough to rank well. However, as search engines grew more sophisticated the need to publish good quality, authoritative content that provided a service to users became very important. When tied in with strong backlink profiles, proper on-page optimisation and search engine friendly sites it provides a solid foundation. Best practice dictates including target keywords in places such as the page title, meta description, alt tags and headings, as well as in the main bodies of content. Also using synonyms and variations of terms can help with ranking.

Keywords still have a big role to play in optimisation. Ensuring your content is targeting the right market and providing users with quality information will drive in high quality traffic. When implemented as part of a well rounded digital marketing strategy you are sure to succeed!

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