Figuring out the algorithms that Google uses to determine which websites rank the highest in search results is basically impossible. The principle always remains the same – showing users the most relevant content that answers their questions. However, the way Google decides who shows up first in a search keeps changing.
Early on, keywords have been playing an important role in helping Google understand what kind of content you have to offer and whether your website is valuable to its users or not. And they continue to be an essential part of Search Engine Optimization. To make the most of your keywords and ensure that Google picks them up when indexing your page, there are a few basic rules to consider.
Keywords and Content
In general, there are two ways to make keywords visible to your readers and Google. You can either create a keywords list upfront and create content around it or weave your keywords into the page. Choosing the letter, however, can prove tricky to those unfamiliar with Google algorithms.
If your keyword does not appear often enough on your website, Google will simply ignore you, thinking that your content is not what you claim it is about. On the other hand, overusing your keyword can quickly result in Google spam filters picking you up for “keyword stuffing” and throwing your website into the sin bin.
In addition to having your keywords show on your page it is also recommended to include so-called LSI keywords. LSI stands for Latent Semantic Indexing and means that your chances to appear in Google searches are higher if your website also uses phrases related to your keywords or main phrase.
There are several reasons why LSI keywords boost your SEO. In the eyes of Google, their presence generally shows that content is well written rather than created by bots, hence is of better quality and more relevant to what users might be looking for.
Undertaking keyword research is essential to succeed, and tools such as Google Analytics and Google Keyword Planner are a great place to start. After that, with a clear picture in mind of what you want to write about, it should come naturally to have your base and LSI keywords appear throughout your content.
Apart from the content text, there are plenty of areas where your keywords can appear including the meta description and meta title tags as well as headings and internal links. The website or page title, however, is the most important area to have your keywords present as this is what Google will index to determine the value of what you are offering Be aware that cramming too many keywords into the title can compromise its readability which is a red flag for Google, as are titles that are extremely long.
You can also use your keywords in filenames, audio and video titles. The latter is especially important as posts with the right alt text and title attribute appear much higher in image searches, thus resulting in more traffic.
There is no one answer as to how many keywords you should or can have on your website. But, the more keywords you use, the higher the chances are that Google deems your content spam or useless – simply because the content you provide may not be specific enough to satisfy users of the search engine.
It is best to focus on one to two main keywords or keyword phrases that are present in your SEO title tag, headline, meta description and throughout the actual text. In addition, you can include a number of LSI keywords and phrases that are likely to be used in search queries.
For help boosting your rankings in search engines, contact the friendly team at Energise Web today.