What is a Keyword in SEO?

What is a Keyword in SEO?
almost 3 years ago

Thoughts and quick one liners about keywords in SEO

So you want to learn about Keywords eh?

Let's start with one simple notion.  WORDS ALONE ARE VERY POWERFUL.  So...given that, your Key Words must be EXTRA powerful.  Why, because they are KEY. (Get It?)  They are the most important words in your SEO strategy. Please note these are often also referred to as Tag Words.

So what are Keywords? Keywords are the words that best summarize what your content is about. Is your content about "Why Fleas Go To Dogs" or is it about "How to Get Fleas Off of Dogs" this are subtle distinctions, but by organizing your content cleanly and properly, you can remove any doubt for what you want to be found for.  Do you want to be found for your "Company Name" or for a "Product You Company Carries"

Search engines are incredible and intelligent and they can tell when a piece of content has useful information beyond just the topic of choice. But often these search engines can get confused if the Tag/Key Words are disorganized or CONFLICTING.

The reality is that search engines only have limited real estate in a search result, so they have to find ways to decipher your content to determine the validity of the point you are coming across to. So the flow of your Keywords within your writing helps to determine what your content is BEST about in the eyes of a search engine.

General thoughts to be aware of with Keywords

Thought #1 - Over using keywords is suicide. In fact when I am writing this content, I am trying to find other ways to let you know that your important words for SEO are not to be overused. The reality is computers are sharp enough to pick up on patterns very easily.  So if you think you can fool a computer with a few extra keywords, you are wrong.  The search engine bots have no emotion and they basically know when you are full of crap.

SEO, overuse, tags

Thought #2 - Too many keywords are confusing. If I am a computer and I see a bunch of tags, I don't know if you are coming or going. So I will likely put you in the I will get to that later. So don't throw out a thousand words hoping you will get lucky.  Not going to happen. Too many people coming with precise content.

Thought #3 - The title of your content is where is all starts. From there you can form a logical pattern to really allow the computer to make sense of your content and give you credit for what you want to be found for.

Hints on Tags (Alternative Term)

Hint #1: The keywords  and Title Of Your Content you use should be a balance between words that are highly sought after, aligned to your business and not overly competed for.

It is VERY hard to render the top spot in google for highly competitive generic terms like "boats" - Some sites very early on, did a great job securing the high spots, and Google sees no reason to dethrone them. These sites provide legitimate and fresh content. So you might want to create content and subsequently keywords for example "Larson Boats 2016" instead of going for the general term.

Hint #2: If you are writing a legitimate and original piece, the reality is you likely should research reference that you did so.

Search engines give your content credit if you reference other VALID content that might add value to your Keywords.  For example, if you want to get search for "The Colorado River" there is nothing wrong with referencing white water rafting operations that work the Colorado River.  Your content just became more relevant.

Hint #3: When you reference and article that you feel is relevant to your keywords, it's not a bad idea to insert it right into the content.

Here is a great article right from the horses mouth (Ahem, Google) on the need to have legitimate sites referencing your information.

So I am referencing another article that will validate my content on Keywords. (Many people go on and on about Google algorithms always changing.  I don't think they think this is a game. I think that Google wants to drive people to legitimate content. So they change algorithms to make their results even better.  I don't see them changing their fundamental belief to drive people to the most relevant content for a search term.

Hint #4: Use Images with Keywords in the alt tags of the images.

Well you know what they say, images are worth a thousand words. And if you are going to take the time to put up an image and label an image, then you clearly care about what you are trying to do.


You have got to be kidding me if you think a computer can't quickly scour a database and match a few words to know that what you have written is also somewhere else.  And even more so, they know who wrote the content first.

What is a Keyword in SEO?

Hint #6: If you are going to reference content, please, please reference the original piece.

It's ethical and obviously important when you are writing anything to summarize into some original thought and credit those who you have learned from.  All of your good content and keyword organization can be for not if you are perceived to have duplicated content. Klusster uses a system to automatically give credit to the original article in a portfolio. This article on canonicalization will help you see the value of crediting the original piece.

Doesn't all this sound like Common Sense? Takes you back to public school really when you learned bibliography skills

Article Summary

Keywords are what search engines use to determine what your content is about.  How you structure your Keywords and content is just as important as the words themselves to making your content valuable.

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