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Keyword Search Marketing - Raking in the Pot with Keyword Search Marketing

what are keywords? why use keywords? what are the best keywords?

Search engine marketers are quasi-gamblers, always laying bets against the house – aka, the major search engine. SEO (search engine optimization) experts play their hands against the complex search algorithms. Winning is for the few – Google’s front page only holds so many. Yet all want a piece of the pot, and so all towards that coveted front page. The hand to get a website there isn’t as flashy as a full house; it’s simple and straightforward, like a pair of queens, and it’s dependable and reliable: keyword search marketing.

What Are Keywords?

In their simplest meaning, keywords are topic words. The keyword phrase, “Guitar Chords,” would describe the topic of an article titled, “How to Learn Basic Guitar Chords.” However, keywords are best understood when viewed through the lens of a marketer.

In search marketing, keywords are used by marketers to lure search engine traffic to their site. They anticipate what terms and phrases an internet user will type into a search bar, and write their text with those words and phrases in mind.

Why Use Keywords?

Keywords are the internet’s primary method of indexing information by topic. They are the internet’s matchmaker. Therefore, websites should use pertinent keywords throughout their web pages, not generic words just to boost irrelevant traffic.

What Are the Best Keywords?

Keywords are a marketer’s bread and butter. Take them seriously. Here is a list of steps to take, along with explanations and tips, to select the best keywords.

1. Identify Your Unique Selling Proposition

In the parlance of marketers, a “unique selling proposition” is that product or service which sets you apart from competitors. It makes you, you. What is the web page’s main focus?

2. With this information at hand, construct a general idea of what type of keywords to include. Then, use a search engine analytics service to decide what keywords to choose based upon popularity. For instance, if you must choose between the words “guitar lessons” and “how to learn guitar,” and the first phrase receives 20% more search queries than the latter, opt for the first phrase. After the primary keyword phrases have been identified, select a second-tier row of secondary keywords.

Are vague or specific words better for keyword search marketing? While some SEO marketers laud ambiguous phrases for their anticipated assurance of high traffic, this strategy is flawed. An internet user searching for piano lessons does not want guitar lessons, and if she clicks on a guitar web page, she is likely to be frustrated and associate negative feelings with that web page. Specific keywords create a better match between the customer and your service or product.

Should you choose individual words or phrases? Depends. Individual words return more general results, while phrases narrow down the listings. Long-tail keyword phrases, those more than four words, should be used for very specific search engine returns.

3. Place the keywords in the web page. Strive for an optimum keyword density of 2%-5%. Any more, and the web page is likely to be flagged for spamming; any less, and the browser may not have enough information to give the web page the applicable topic. All keywords, when read, should make sense. Shoving them in randomly, creating nonsensical paragraphs or making long lists of keywords is not only crude design, poor writing and pathetic customer service, but is also likely to send out spam alerts.

First, write the web page HTML title with a primary keyword.

Second, feed keywords to search engines through HMTL meta tags. While some browsers now ignore these tags because of keyword spamming (overloading a page with terms), it is still worthwhile and, if nothing else, does give browsers further information about the web page.

Third, position keywords in the document’s major headings, subheadings, and within the first paragraph and/or 100 words. These are the primary locations search engines examine for keywords.

Fourth, include keywords in the regular text and image captions.

Oddly, the most important aspect of internet marketing is not keyword search marketing. Regardless of keyword fluff, legerdemain or cleverness, if a web page does not read well and offer unique, applicable content, it will fail. The best SEO practice is simple: write with quality.

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