What’s the Importance of Keywords in Search Engine Optimization?
A search engine collects information about all the data available in the world wide web as plain text, pictures, graphics, videos, audios, PDF’s etc and stores this information in their own database. Further it provides a facility to the users in the form of an interface called as a search box where the users enter a word or sentence that defines the specific product or service that they are looking for. And then the search engines match these words with the pages available in their databases and displays them in the search engine results page. The selection and listing of the web pages are made on the basis of certain set of algorithm that the search engines follow, but one basic rule followed by the search engines is that the content of the page or pages should closely match the word or words that the user has entered in the search box. This word or set of words are generally referred as keywords or key-phrase.
What is a Keyword or Key-phrase?
A Keyword or Key-phrase is one or more set of words that closely relate to the product or services that you are selling on your website. Like for example if you are providing a computer repairing service then your keywords on that web-page would be computer repair service, computer services, printer services, computers repairs etc.
What is the importance of a Keyword?
The entire concept of a search engine is dependent on the words or phrase or keywords that the user keys-in the search box. The search engines will pick up the list of pages of information from its databases that closely match the keyword and lists them in the search engine results page. So, from the point of view of the website designer it becomes important to include and write the page content using the relevant keywords that match the product or services that you are trying to sell or promote on your website.
How do you select the right set of keywords for your website?
Its not enough if you just select a bunch of keywords and sprinkle them in your web-pages, its also important to do a proper research and find out as to what the people are searching for and how they are searching them, like what are the keywords or key-phrase they are using. In addition you need to know as to how many pages are already indexed by the search engines for that set of keywords, I mean the competition level. Also you need to remember that the keywords that you select for your website must be suitable to describe your products and service in a very convenient and meaningful manner.
How many keywords can I use per web-page?
Do not use too many keywords because that would make your page look very generic and not so specific and at the same time do not use just one keyword. It would be good to use between 2 and 3 keywords max in one page.
Some important concepts that the search engines consider with reference to the Keywords.
Its the ratio between the total indexable words used on the web-page and the number of times you have used the keyword within the document. It should be maintained between 3-4% max.
If your keyword is a phrase consisting of 2 or 3 words, then you can use it as a single key phrase within your document or you can split the words and use them independently but remember to keep the different words of the same key phrase as close as possible to each other preferably within the same sentence. This concept is usually referred as keyword Proximity and search engines give a lot of importance to it while ranking your website in the SERP’s.
Repeatedly using the same keywords within your document without any meaning with the sole intention of increasing the keyword density is called a keyword stuffing and the search engines do not encourage it, if used extensively your website is likely to be banned by the search engines.
Using the same keyword phrase in different combination is called as keyword dilution. For example if your keyword is seo training Bangalore, you use it as Bangalore seo training, training in Bangalore, seo Bangalore training etc. This is not encouraged by the search engines and may lead to ban of your website.
The search engines have figured out the most important locations within a web-page where the keywords should be used so that the visitor who sees your website gets a clear picture of the products and services that you are offering and also encourages him to buy on your website. Some of the important locations where you can use the keywords are in the page title, page description, page header, file names, alt text in images, within the page content etc. This is referred as keyword prominence.