keyword density

Don’t Overuse Keywords for your Content

In this lecture, you will learn about the optimum usage of exact keyword density in the body of your post. In the recent search research data, the keyword density of the top-ranking pages has come down significantly.

The average number of keyword appearances has come down from 10 to 7.5 in the Top 10 search results and to 7.4 in the Top 20 search results when compared to previous years.

The most important observation here is the correlation factor.

It has come down from 7% to -1%, which means, if you add more keywords than what’s recommended, then you will start to do badly in search rankings.

So, for beginners, what is the keyword density that I recommend?

For a 1500 word article, you should write the keyword not more than 8 times in the body of the article.

Normally Yoast SEO plugin recommends up to 1 or even 2% keyword density.

But that’s kind of very high compared to the actual search survey that you can see in these graphs.

So the maximum percentage of Keyword density that you can use on your article should not exceed 1%.

Beyond this keyword density, I advise you to look into the relevant terms and proof terms to improve the overall semantic density and not just the keyword density.

Semantic density is nothing but increasing the density of the overall theme of the post or the overall concept or logic of the post.

How can we do that?

Well, in some of our lectures, you could have noticed that I might have reiterated the conclusion or inferences of those lectures again, in different words.

That’s because, at first, I might have explained in a way that intermediate and expert students can understand, such as what is a holistic approach and what is the importance of proof terms and relevant terms.

After that, I might have given a conclusion of the same thing in simple words and in a shorter manner.

That’s for students who are in the beginner level.

Likewise in your website, you may increase the density of the content or the theme, i.e the semantic density, by reiterating the concept in different words with different examples, to satisfy the needs of different sections of visitors.

Or you can also increase the semantic density by providing your diplomatic opinion in your own style, on the subject of your post.

Let’s take a post about semantic density from Moz website, for example.

They have written clean content with a lot of sub-headings and easy to read bullet points.

But what I’m referring to in this post is these ‘Recommendations’ below every subheading and the ‘Takeaways’ at the end of their post.

They have simply reiterated their explanation in a concise, easy to glance format.

This makes it easy for the readers as well as this increases the overall semantic density of the post.

In this manner you are making it easy for the search engines to understand the overall concept of your post.

If your post has a good semantic density, then the probability of appearing in the top search results for the nontargeted keywords will get higher as time progresses.

We have already discussed that you need to write articles that are comprehensive, which answers many of the search user’s questions and it should have an average word count of around 1800 words.

But what should be the quality of your article?

How easy should it be to read & understand?

And what should you do:

Putting Keywords in URL

Uniform Resource Locator (URL) is the web address or link of a file on the internet. It is unique for each file. When creating a URL for your article, one of the things to include is your primary keyword. Mentioning the keywords in URL of your article helps search engines to identify your article as a relevant result to the searcher’s queries. Also, phrases from URLs are often used as anchor texts for many content based articles around the web. Thus, having a keyword phrase in your URL is vital.  

Tag Keywords in Meta Descriptions

Meta Descriptions are concise descriptions that offer a preview of the article. Even though, it does not appear in the content of the article itself; it does appears on the SERP when a searcher posts a query. You should tweak its (meta description) content in order to incorporate your keywords. Although, search engines like Google and Bing have claimed that they do not factor meta descriptions in their search engine algorithms, it still is of considerable importance. This is because if you use keywords that the searcher’s are likely to use in their search query – it appears on the SERP with keywords in the meta description being highlighted. Therefore, keywords in meta descriptions increase visibility, earning your article more and more clicks.  

Use Keywords in Your Content

This is perhaps the most essential and significant part of keyword based SEO strategy. It is ultimately content itself that is assessed by the search engine algorithms in order to determine its relevance to search queries. Here are a few things you need to consider when using keywords in your articles:  

  1. Choosing the right keyword density:

    Establishing an optimal keyword density to include in your article is crucial. Essentially keyword density is about how many times you should include your keyword in the article. A general criteria of keyword density is between 1% and 4%, but it depends on article to article. Just make sure that you don’t overuse your keywords. There are many tools to determine the optimal keyword density such as Live Keyword Analysis and Textalyser.
  2. Make sure that your chosen keywords are relevant:

    Relevancy is the key. If your chosen keywords are not relevant to the article you are writing about, it will not matter if you rank higher on a SERP or not because users are likely to exit your web page without reading your article completely, if they don’t find the content relevant.
  3. Placement is more important than frequency:

    While having lots of keywords in your article can improve the ranking and visibility of your article in the SERP, too many mentions can compromise on the content quality. Thus, focusing on the placement of your keywords is more important in such an instance. As mentioned in this section above, you need to place your keywords in the title, URL and meta description along with in the article itself.
  4. Integrate keywords in the article naturally:

    Plugging in keywords in the article just for the sake of it is going to make your article appear senseless, confusing and even stupid to the reader. You should, under no circumstances, compromise on the quality of your article and user experience for keyword usability.

You need to incorporate and integrate keywords naturally to make your article valuable. Creating a rough outline before writing a final draft can help you ensure that your article is smooth.  

  1. Key positions for placing keywords in the article: Making sure that your keywords are included in certain key positions in the article is another thing that you need to consider. Make sure your article contains a keyword in the first paragraph or at least within the first ninety characters. Also, keywords should be incorporated in the last paragraph of your article.
  2. Use keywords as anchor text in the article: Anchor texts are simply a phrase or a text which provides a link to another relevant article. For your article, you should use your keywords as anchor text.  For example: use keywords in articles here is hyperlinked to our SEO service page.


Keyword Practices: What Not to Do?


Do Not Use the Same Keywords as Your Competitors

It is important that you avoid using the same keywords as your competitors. This is because using similar keywords as your competitors will not distinguish your content. To make your content stand out, you need to get more creative. Search for synonyms for the competitor’s keywords and assess if those words will be used by the searchers.  

Do Not Use One Specific Keyword

Under no circumstances should you use only one keyword phrase. Not only will it make your content look repetitive and induce boredom among readers, it may also result into penalty from search engines. Instead, try creating variations with your original keyword phrase to keep your content interesting and free of a potential risk of penalty.  

Avoid ‘overstuffing’ keywords

People tend to think that stuffing as much keywords as possible in your content is going to ‘over optimize your articles. If you also believe in over optimization, then consider this a fair warning – there is no such thing as ‘over optimization’. In fact, overloading your content with keyword phrases is only going to backfire as it compromises your content quality. Search engines such as Google and Yahoo don’t take over stuffing lightly and are more than likely going to penalize your website by possible blacklisting or lowering your overall ranking. They use advanced topic modeling algorithms which help them analyze and assess the relevance and quality of your content. Writing a  keyword optimized article is no easy task. Everyone needs to take care of search engine ranking as well as ensuring that readers find your content interesting in order to draw web traffic to your blogs and articles. With search engines getting more and more sophisticated, you need to smarten up and be aware of techniques regarding keyword usage in your articles. Ultimately, it is these keywords practices, that determine whether your article will be found by the search engine crawlers or not, and hence, read by the people.

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