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How Many Keywords Should I Optimize My Site For?

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The best approach is to create content for people and not for search engines, and in most cases, to optimize every Web page for a keyphrase that consists of two, three, four, or five words. What you really want to avoid is one-word keywords, as the competition for these is fierce. Researching keyword popularity is also important.

SEO Considerations

As far as search engines are considered, it’s better for a Web page on your site to be extremely relevant to one keyphrase, than moderately relevant to two, three, four, or more keyphrases. It’s easier to get a top Google ranking with one keyword. Also, focusing on a single keyphrase will make content creation a lot easier, and less spammy.

That doesn’t mean, however, that you cannot sprinkle a few other good keywords throughout your Web pages, as long as they appear naturally. If you have the main keyphrase in mind while creating the content, you will encourage other related keywords to surface on their own. But these should be kept forever in the shadow of the big keyword. And always use analytics software to assess keyword popularity when choosing your keyphrases.

Use Related Keyphrases

Ideally, you want to optimize all your Web pages for different but related keyphrases. A keyword research and suggestion process done by expert SEO services can create a whole bunch of good keywords. From these you choose the ones most relevant and suitable for your business, and build a Web page around each of them. The other keywords you sprinkle through the content. Keyword suggestion software can also help, especially when used in conjunction with a Web analytics software. A good approach is to choose a single keyword that appears in all your keyphrases.

You don’t want that main keyphrase only in your content, though. You want it in the title, headline, URL, image titles and image Alt tags, video titles and descriptions.

Use Specific Keyphrases

The length of the keyphrase matters. A targeted keyphrase that consists of three or four words is more specific than a single keyword. With a keyprase it’s a lot easier to get a good SEO ranking, as well as to attract targeted visitors who will be more likely to answer your call to action. A search query for the keyword ‘shoe’ will produce many, many, many results. But a search for ‘buy cheap tennis shoes for women’ much fewer.

In conclusion, optimize every Web page for a unique keyphrase, but make sure that all keyphrases you use are related and preferably share one or two keywords.

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