The role of keywords is to ensure your site can be found in Google; be sure to pick them carefully. Explore as many keyword options as possible before you choose the best ones for optimization.
Not all keywords will be equally useful, and you will have more luck with some of them than with others. How do you pick the useful ones? The trick is to find keywords that get a lot of searches and aren’t used by competitors you can’t hope to beat.
Using a keyword tool can help you there. I use WebCEO’s Keyword Suggestions tool.
Short-tail keywords (made of one or two words) are safe to rule out as too competitive. However, you can use them as a basis to find less competitive keywords: mid-tail and long-tail. Type your keyword ideas into the tool and press Search, then choose the most suitable options from the list. Aim for the ones with the most Google global searches.
Also, the Search Trends column can give you an idea about how popular the keyword is going to be in the near future. If the number of monthly searches has been growing, it’s a good sign.
Once you’ve found enough keywords, the next step is to start putting them in your site. These are the spots:
- Page URL addresses
- Page titles
- Page meta descriptions
- Content on the page
- Image filenames and alt attributes
- Anchor texts of the links pointing to your site’s pages (both from other pages
on your site and from other websites)
What should you NOT do with keywords?
Don’t stuff. Stuffing is oversaturating your content with keywords to the point it no longer looks natural. Example of keyword stuffing: If you’re thinking of buying a custom cigar humidor, please contact our custom cigar humidor specialists at email@example.com.
Don’t cannibalize. It means optimizing multiple pages for the same keywords. How would you like it if Google couldn’t rank your site pages correctly? That’s what happens when you cannibalize.