What are Keywords?
Keywords are focus words that are used to describe a topic.
In terms of SEO and search engine, keywords are words or phrases that searchers type on Google or any other search engine to find a result for their search query.
Keywords help search engines like Google to find the most relevant result for a searcher’s query.
When you make a Google search, you type in relevant words to find what you are looking for. These are keywords that describe your search intent.
The search result that Google returns to your query is based on the keywords you typed. These search results can be organic or paid advertisements, but they are all relevant to your keywords.
To make you better understand let’s look at an example.
Suppose you want to buy a used car. You might make a Google search to find a used car that is available for sale.
To find a used car, you might type “used car for sale” on Google. Although your search query consists of 4 words, it is still considered a keyword.
Google will provide you a list of websites relevant to your search query.
When it comes to SEO, understanding what keywords are and how to use them properly is very essential.
Also, it is important to know how keywords can affect your SERPs ranking and improve your SEO.
As a website owner, if you know how to use keywords effectively, you can attract thousands of website visitors. So make sure your keywords are relevant to the topic people are looking for.
Why Keywords Are Important For SEO
Think of keywords as free marketing for your online business.
To understand keywords you need to understand how search engines work.
The whole search engine algorithm is based on keywords. Without keywords, it probably would be extremely hard to find something using the search engine.
The whole concept of Google search would be very different without keywords.
Keywords are essential for SEO because when someone types a keyword in search engines your chance of being discovered increases if you rank for a keyword.
Your content should have the relevant keywords that people are searching for online.
Keywords can help you drive organic traffic to your website through search queries.
Organic traffic is the most important asset of an online business or blog. So there is no other alternative to keywords to drive free traffic to your website.
Keywords can help you attract the right kind of audience for your business.
Suppose you are selling ‘tuxedo’ on your website and your target keyword is ‘buy tuxedo online’. When people search with this keyword their intent is to buy a tuxedo online. So most people visiting your site because of this keyword are likely to buy a tuxedo.
Targeting the right keywords can increase your site’s traffic notably.
When optimizing content for your site, your goal should be to rank for a targeted keyword.
How To Show Up On Google Search Results
Showing up on Google SERP is very easy. Once your content is indexed by Google, it will appear on Google search. The difficult part is showing up on top of SERPs for certain keywords.
If you show up on the top 10 search results for a keyword, kudos to you.
It is extremely difficult to show up on the first page of Google search, especially when you are competing for a very competitive keyword.
To show up on the top of search results you can do one of these two things –
- Improve your web page SEO (search engine optimization)
- Use Google Adwords For advertising with PPC (pay per click)
There are no other alternatives to show up on top of Google search. You can either show up on top of a search result by paying Google for a certain keyword or improve your SEO.
Pay Per Click (PPC)
If you use PPC to show up on top of SERPs, you will able to see the instantaneous result.
PPC or pay per click is a form of advertising where you pay Google only when someone clicks on your ads that appear on top of SERPs.
You can bid on a keyword and the highest bidder will win the first spot of search results.
Ads are distinctive from organic search results as they are labeled by Google.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search engine optimization or better known as SEO is the way to optimize your web pages and contents to appear on top of Google SERPs.
SEO can improve your keyword visibility on search engines and help you get free organic traffic.
Improving your SEO can help your content rank on top of SERPs for relevant keywords.
Sometimes a single keyword can help you get tons of free traffic on your website. The best part of organic traffic is it is consistent till you rank for a keyword.
It is very important to understand which keyword to target. Some keywords can generate thousands of traffic while some will just sit on top of SERPs without a single hit.
Keywords are one of the most important factors of on-page SEO. Search engines find out the most appropriate search results based on keywords.
Google’s algorithm is designed to provide relevant content. Keywords from a web page can help Google search engine decide whether it is relevant to search intent.
What is Search Intent – Understanding User Intent
Before you dive deep into SEO you need to understand what is search intent.
Search intent is the intention or reason behind an online search. It is used to understand the purpose of a user behind a search query.
Basically, it is asking “Why” a person made this search.
Search intent usually describes what the user actually wants from a search result.
You can understand a searcher’s search intent by looking at the keywords they are using. You can tell if they are looking to buy something, looking for information online, or just want to visit a specific website.
Keywords can help to curate different search intent. Using keywords you can attract an audience with specific search intent.
There are four types of search intent –
- Informational Intent – When a searcher is looking for information or a solution
- Navigational Intent – A searcher wants to go to a specific website
- Transactional Intent – When a searcher is looking to buy a product
- Commercial Investigation – A search is looking for information about a product before buying
Understanding a searcher’s intent can help any marketer generate traffic and convert them into leads or sales.
Types Of Keywords
Keywords are the building blocks of SEO. Without keywords, there is no such thing as SEO. Understanding the types of keywords to use to maximize your SEO effort is important.
Because the perfect keyword strategy can help you increase your website traffic. There are various types of keywords. But most SEOs focus on the 3 main types of keywords to increase their reach.
- Short-tail keywords
Short tail keywords are focus keywords that are made up of 3 words or less. Short-tail keywords have a huge search volume but they are also very competitive.
- Long-tail keywords
Just like the title suggests, long-tail keywords are longer keywords that consist of more than 3 words. They are more like key phrases and not keywords.
Long-tail keywords have lower search volumes and easier to rank on SERPs.
- LSI keywords
LSI keywords (latent semantic indexing keywords) are thematic words that are relevant to the content of the page and focus keyword.
These keywords are used to describe a topic on a broader range.
How To Use The Right Keywords
Previously people use to stuff their web pages with keywords in order to rank higher on search engine results pages. Some people even used to hide keywords within their content.
While this cheap trick used to work in the early 2000s, Google’s algorithm has become a lot smarter till then.
Remember, Google prefers content that is human-friendly and not made for bots.
When optimizing your web page, make sure your content is enticing to your readers. Do not try to force keywords within your content. Make sure your keywords appear naturally.
Keywords are the most important part of SEO. It is the conversation between the searcher and search engines.
Understanding how keywords function can help you understand your user intent.