Optimizing Your Keywords for Google — People First Content

Google is the most popular search engine in the world. It has a market share of about 90%, and there are more than 8.5 billion searches on Google every day. So optimizing your keywords for Google should be a top priority.

As a business owner, you want some of those searches to come your way. But if you’re a small business owner, the odds of someone finding your website can seem, well, 1 in 8.5 billion.

Google’s search engine algorithm is complex, but we can still make it work for us with the magic of keywords.

What Are Keywords in SEO

If you already know what keywords are, feel free to skip to the next section. But if you’re starting out in digital marketing-or just want a refresher-this is the place to start.

Keywords in SEO (search engine optimization) are the words and phrases that people use to search for products, services, or information on the internet. The goal of SEO is for your website to appear in the search results when someone searches for something related to your business.

Keywords don’t have to be a single word. The keywords you’ll want to target will often be a few words long. Longer keywords are called long-tail keywords.

What makes a good keyword?

What you’re looking for in a keyword comes down to a few factors:

  • Is it related to your product or service?
  • Are people looking for it (and using that word in their searches)?
  • Is there not a lot of content already written for it?

How you answer these questions can depend on your business, but generally, you’re good to go if you answer yes to these three questions!

How To Use Keywords for Google

There are many different techniques for optimizing a keyword for Google. You can get Google’s take on the subject straight from the horse’s mouth here, but these are the highlights.

Pay attention to placement

Not all keywords are created equal!

If a keyword’s goal is to tell a search engine the topic of a page, it should appear in the heading tags. So, naturally, the H1 (or title) is weighed the most when Google considers your page. But H2s and H3s also matter, as do the keywords you put in your URLs, alt-text, and meta descriptions.

There are many things to consider when constructing an SEO-optimized blog post, so make sure you don’t forget anything.

Don’t keyword stuff

Often, when you find a great keyword, you’ll be tempted to put it everywhere in your content. But Google frowns on this practice since it makes your content less readable and ultimately less helpful for a reader.

So don’t put a bunch of keywords in the <title> element. And don’t make your meta descriptions a laundry list of different keywords without anything to make it make sense.

The other place they discourage that practice is in URLs. Put your focus keyword in the URL and leave it at that.

Focus on intent

Search intent is what a user is looking for when they search. We have a post that goes more in-depth on the subject, but the general idea is to know the idea behind the keyword and strive to deliver the answer to that.

Use a variety of keywords

The other important element of that you should think through the different ways someone might try to find what you have to offer and cater to that.

For example, someone who knows the digital marketing industry’s jargon might ask, “best SEO practices.” But someone who’s just learning might search “how to get my website to the top of Google.”

Keep both of those people in mind and incorporate both versions into your page.

People first, Google second

If Google is the one saying it, you should probably believe them. A search engine’s goal is to satisfy the user. If you’re only catering to an algorithm, the algorithm will penalize you.

Related Article: Writing Content for SEO: Do’s and Don’ts

For that reason, make sure your keywords are natural and related to your topic.

Anchor text

Links on your page are connected to anchor text-the highlighted and underlined text when you add a link. Keep anchor text short, sweet, and descriptive, and don’t use it as another opportunity for keyword stuffing.

Make sure your keywords deliver

What it always comes back to is quality content. So having relevant, high-value content related to the target keyword will always help you in Google’s eyes.

3 Keyword Tools for Google (by Google)

All these guidelines may seem like common sense, but finding good keywords sometimes can feel like looking for a needle in a haystack. We want to use keywords with high search volume, low competition, and high commercial intent.

Luckily there are some keyword tools for Google that Google itself has developed that can make that process a lot easier.

1. Google Trends

Google Trends shows how often a particular search term is entered relative to the total search-volume across various regions and in multiple languages. It’s a great tool to see the popularity of a topic or keyword over time. It can also be used as an indicator for understanding what topics may trend in the future.

It can be handy for businesses to see what topics are trending in the future and what keywords they should focus on in their content.

2. Google Keyword Planner

Google Keyword Planner (previously Google Keyword Tool) is a free online tool that helps content writers to find the most relevant keywords for their content. It shows you how many people are searching for your chosen keywords, what they are searching for, and how much it would cost you to advertise on those keywords.

It can also give you an idea of the level of competition for that keyword and how much traffic you can anticipate for your website if you rank on page 1.

The Keyword Planner also provides information about related keywords and phrases, top search results, and the number of other competing websites.

3. Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a very helpful tool for digital marketing in general. It provides a ton of data about the visitors to your website, which you can then use to improve your marketing campaigns. For example, you can see where they are coming from, what they are searching for, and how long they stay on your site.

The most helpful feature for researching keywords is seeing which keywords are bringing in the most traffic. In addition, you can see what “queries” are leading people to click on your content, so you can further optimize for those keywords or related ones.

If you’re looking for more helpful SEO tools, here are 4 tools for search engine optimization.

Take-Aways

Optimizing your keywords for google can seem like an ordeal, but luckily, most guidelines are pretty common sense. Use keywords to let people know what you’re talking about and make sure that they add and don’t detract from your content. Find out what people are looking for and provide!

It always comes back to quality content. So, if you want to focus your efforts on other elements of digital marketing, we can provide the content! People First Content can write SEO-optimized content for your business that attracts more leads. Contact us today to get started!

Originally published at https://www.peoplefirstcontent.com on June 5, 2022.

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